first_imgPrince’s Grant is one of a handful of highly rated clubs on the Dolphin Coast of northern KwaZulu-Natal. These include the Tom Weiskopf-designed Zimbali Country Club, two courses at Mount Edgecombe, as well as Simbithi Country Club and Umhlali Golf Estate near Ballito. 20 December 2010 Gems of the Dolphin Coast A favourable climate and a wealth of pristine scenery make golf a popular sport in South Africa, with enough course designs and terrain to suit all handicaps. Prince’s Grant, a premier golf estate in KwaZulu-Natal province, is but one of numerous choices on offer. The course at Prince’s Grant is a challenge for scratch golfers, so it’s to be expected that high-handicappers, like myself, will find it tough going. The course offers unrivalled vistas over the ocean and surrounding fields. The signature 15th hole, for instance, drops dramatically from an elevated tee to a narrow fairway hundreds of feet below. When the views are this spectacular, you shouldn’t worry too much about your score. But the story behind Prince’s Grant is altogether less regal. George Wilson Prince acquired the land by “deed of grant” in 1856 as a sub-division of a much larger farm called Hyde Park. Top-ranked course The course at Prince’s Grant is consistently listed in South Africa’s top 20 in the annual ranking conducted by Golf Digest magazine – no mean feat, given the many world-renowned courses located across the country. It also hosts the annual National Amateur Championship, the SAA Pro-Am, as well as other local PGA events. Course management is key. At just under 6 000m off the club tees, it doesn’t require big drives, but it does demand accuracy. The rough can be unforgiving, and there are large tracts of out-of-bounds territory snug against the fairways. Take extra balls! Having said all this, perhaps the best counsel to follow is the old saying about not letting a round of golf become “a good walk spoiled”. A cursory glance at some of the country’s place names seems to suggest an almost national obsession with royalty: Chiefs, amaKhosi in isiZulu, and other traditional leaders provide one set of descriptors: from the new King Shaka International Airport near Durban, to the Chief Maqoma heritage route in the Eastern Cape and 2010 Fifa World Cup venue, the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg, North West province. With so many South African place names linked to royalty, first-time visitors to the resort could be forgiven for thinking that Prince’s Grant takes its name from some imperial benediction or other. Then there are the designations that date back to the colonial era and the days before the country became a republic, alluding to successive generations of British monarchs: King William’s Town (that’s William IV); George (King George III, in case you were wondering); Queenstown (named after Victoria); Prince Albert (after her husband), as well as Port Edward and Kind Edward School (in honour of a visit in 1925 by the Prince of Wales, who later became King Edward VII). Designed by top South African course designer Peter Matkovich, Prince’s Grant was opened in 1994 and has grown into one of the country’s most prestigious coastal golf estates. The 14th, “Windy”, is just that – but, to be fair, so is much of the course. Upcountry golfers should remember the golden rule when playing near the sea: take a lower club than you usually would, or you’ll end up short every time. Later, in the 19th century, indentured labourer-turned-property tycoon Babu Bodasing bought the farm. It stayed in the Bodasing family for many years, and they remain shareholders of Prince’s Grant Holdings today. The lodge at Prince’s Grant is a four-star bed-and-breakfast facility with 15 rooms looking out over the course. As a holiday destination, Prince’s Grant also offers a pristine private beach, canoeing on the lagoon, health and beauty treatments, tennis and squash courts, swimming pools and conference facilities – but golf is without doubt the major drawcard. It’s also wise to pay attention to the playful monikers given to each hole. For example, listen to the advice implicit in the nickname for the par-four 13th hole, which makes a dog-leg up a blind rise. It’s called “Stay Right”. I didn’t, and paid a heavy price. Fortunately, I was warned to keep calm on the first hole, “Temper Tantrum”, and managed to retain my composure even after I fluffed my drive right in front of the clubhouse. It’s nestled on lush stretch of land along the northern coast of KwaZulu-Natal, about 75 kilometres or 45 minute’s drive north of Durban. Attractive holiday houses have been constructed on about half of the 460 residential stands, and many of these are available for rent by golfing parties and other visitors. First published by MediaClubSouthAfrica.com – get free high-resolution photos and professional feature articles from Brand South Africa’s media service. Clubhouse and lodge manager Dereck Hirson says that it is difficult to relate Prince’s Grant with these courses. On the one hand, they occasionally work together, combining their marketing capacity to bring golfers and other tourists to the area. After all, the Dolphin Coast is a little out of the way for many travellers. But, on the other hand, they are essentially competitors in a limited market. And golf tourism is as affected by local and global recessions as any other sector. In the roughlast_img read more


first_imgRelated Posts Tags:#start#startups dana oshiro In a few weeks, moviegoers will flock to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s latest rock ensemble flick Pirate Radio. A fictional period comedy about an illegal station in the North Sea, the film embodies the same anti-authoritarian sentiments that Gen X and Y audiences have grown to love. Jelli.net, a crowdsourced radio station with a Web-based interface, has found a way to democratize sound waves and captivate that same 18-35-year-old audience. The Bay Area company launched in June, allowing users to access a Digg-like interface and vote up or down real time on FM radio during CBS’ Live 105 KITS’ Sunday programming. As of this evening, the company has penned a national deal with 450 Triton Digital Media radio stations and a distribution deal with Australian broadcaster Austereo. Says Jelli’s CEO Mike Dougherty, “What makes this different than request radio is that while program directors set up the broadcast sandbox, there is no actual middle man between a request and radio play.” According to Dougherty, Jelli’s voting platform directly informs programming servers sitting at the radio station’s transmission tower. In other words, if the community decides to vote up a War of the Worlds-style radio scenario, it’s entirely possible to do so. As of today, the community now has access to a nationwide network of stations, and in a few months time, they’ll also have access to stations in Perth, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Melbourne. Rather than kowtowing to advertisers and labels, programming is directly affected by the likes and dislikes of the Jelli community. According to Dougherty, on average two tracks are voted off the air per hour. Just as music fans vote their favorite songs onto the radio, they can also “bomb” them down into the lower echelons of Jelli’s charts. In some cases, waring factions of fans have rallied to take over the airwaves, and in other cases programming revolves around a specific theme. Jelli’s chat feature makes it possible to sway the music mob. In the past, community music sites have struggled to increase their catalogs because of the balancing act they had to maintain between freemium music models and major label licensing fees. With Jelli, the community gets the music they want via streaming web service or traditional radio, and stations continue to tackle the ad placement and legal work. With radio transmission towers constantly connected to the cloud, Dougherty believes that there is a world of opportunity to pull in Facebook applications, mobile interfaces and additional levels of a web-based feedback loops. For developers, stations and advertisers, this cloud-based data means the difference between waiting on a quarterly Arbitron radio rating and gaining access to demographic data on a weekly (and soon daily) basis. Instead of changing the radio station, Jelli empowers users to simply change the song. To check out the service, visit Jelli.net. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more