The Sandy Lane Resort, located in St. James on the western coast of Barbados, has served as an exclusive getaway for celebrities and discerning personalities since it opened in 1961. It has also been busy accepting accolades from guests and travel industry critics alike. Once you get to Sandy Lane resort you will know why. Its 112 luxurious rooms and suites are set along the Caribbean Sea, and the attractive ambiance between the resort's facilities and the natural beauty of the area have coupled to make Sandy Lane resort one of the premier addresses in all of the Caribbean. Ever since the opening of Sandy Lane Barbados resorts have had a standard to compare themselves with. There is nothing you won't find here when looking for the ideal place for a Caribbean vacation. While Sandy Lane resort and its secluded locale offer a tantalizing getaway for couples and families, it also has become quite the destination for golfers. The resort features three golf courses, with the recently opened Green Monkey golf course leading the way in excellence.
The Green Monkey golf course is part of Sandy Lane's $300 million plus renovation project, $25 million of which went into the course's construction. The course was designed by Tom Fazio, one of the top golf course designers in the world, and it has significantly helped Barbados establish itself among other Caribbean golf destinations such as the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. Several first attempts to open the Green Monkey golf course were delayed by Sandy Lane's owners, who were bent on presenting the course in all its possible splendor. For those who are fortunate enough to play a round at Green Monkey, the experience is hard to beat. The first eight holes of the Green Monkey golf course slowly work from a relatively benign first hole into the more drama-filled abandoned quarry. Besides the quarry walls, reaching almost 90 feet high, golfers will enjoy views of the Caribbean Sea throughout their 18-hole journey. Generously wide fairways make for nice shots off the tee, but by no means is Green Monkey golf easy. The greens can be quite complex, and depending on which tees you select, the course could run from 5,410 yards to a long 7,389. Among the Green Monkey golf course's visually pleasing holes is the picturesque par three 16th. An accurate shot down into the quarry will be needed here, or else you might just end up in the green-surrounding bunker. You just might land your shot on the bunker's grass island, which has been shaped like a Barbados green monkey.
The Green Monkey golf course offers five par 5 holes on its card, which could be a reason Tiger Woods likes it so much. In 2004, Tiger Woods, who is a friend of the owners, chose the Green Monkey golf course as the site for his wedding. If you are a soon to be married golf enthusiast looking to mix the ultimate in relaxation and the best in golf, you might consider having your Caribbean wedding at Sandy Lane resort. Although you probably can't hit 300-yard plus drives like Tiger, you can share the same wedding venue. While Green Monkey golf continues to attract professional and amateur players alike, you'll have to be a guest of the Sandy Lane resort to gain access to the course. Whereas this has disappointed those who had hoped the course would be open to the public, it provides the mean's by which Sandy Lane resort can attract golf vacationers to its famed premises.
A round of Green Monkey golf is certainly going to cost you, as the lowest rates you will find at Sandy Lane resort start at $950 a night. That's just the cost for the most modest accommodations during the off-season. As the prices work their way up through the chain of available lodging selections, you can pay up to $25,000 a night for a Villa at Sandy Lane during the peak weeks of mid-December to early January, making Sandy Lane one of the most exclusive Barbados hotels and overall vacation destinations. To play the Green Monkey golf course, you will have to shell out an additional $375, leaving you in a pretty exclusive club. The resort only plans for around 3,000-4,000 rounds to be played at Green Monkey each year, ensuring the course will stay in immaculate condition. The clubhouse is a remarkable venue, complete with the most ideal changing rooms and clubhouse atmosphere. If you need to rent clubs for your Green Monkey golf round, you can pay $65 for Callaway rentals, and you can also rent shoes for $20. There are two other golf courses found at Sandy Lane resort and both are open to players not staying at the Sandy Lane Resort. They are the nine-hole Old 9 course, and the 18-hole Country Club course. In 2006, the Country Club course hosted a World Golf Championship, and hopes are that the Green Monkey golf course will soon figure in among selected venues for professional golf tournaments. At just over 6 miles from the Barbados capital of Bridgetown, the Green Monkey golf course at Sandy Lane resort is an easy find once arriving on the island. The resort's facilities and overall amenities will keep each member of your group satisfied, whether they come to golf or not.