For the latest installment of ’4 Questions with …’, I sat down with Banyan Golf Club‘s director of golf, Joe Morrissey.
Actually, we didn’t sit. We were on our feet, playing a round of golf on the track Asian Golf Monthly readers voted the ‘Best New Course in Asia-Pacific’ in 2009.
During our time together, I learned the affable Brit of Thai descent first came to Hua Hin five years ago to help his parents get a restaurant off the ground, met his wife soon thereafter and has spent all but four days in the area since first setting foot in Hua Hin.
“I went back to the UK for a visit once,” he said, “but I cut the trip short because I realized it wasn’t for me anymore.”
I also found out the lad is a plus-3 handicap(!), knows how to both punish and finesse a golf ball, and has more than a few opinions on the place he now calls home …
Q: There are more than a few good holes here at Banyan Golf Club. In fact, I like them all — and it’s rare that I say that about a golf course. But the par-3 15th is probably the most talked about and photographed. Is it the best?
A: It’s definitely a stunner. The tees are elevated, so you’re looking down at the green with the sea and Koh Sai in the background to the left. But personally, I think the holes just before that — Nos. 13 and 14 — are best. Both are short par 4s. Both make you think. I like that.
Q: It’s warm out here and an ice cold beer at the turn sounds good. Singha?
A: It’s my preference. A lot of people prefer Chang or Leo. But I stick with Singha. No rhyme or reason really. Just personal preference.
Q: Aside from the Mulligan’s Bar terrace (Banyan’s “19th hole”), where do you like to kick back with a Singha?
A: Anywhere really. With a bowl of noodles on a street corner is tough to beat. But I also like having a drink once in a while at Putahracsa resort, on one of their outdoor sofas, right there on the beach. That’s a fantastic spot for a beer. So is Retro Bar, near the railroad tracks and just across the street from Hua Hin Night Market. Great place to people watch, too. And it’s just a couple doors down from Margaritas, which serves up the best Mexican food in Hua Hin. One of the guys there is Mexican, so you know the food is legit.
Q: Sounds good. What about to get away from the crowd? Where would you go?
A: Sai Noi Beach, just past Pak Nam Pran. It’s the best beach by far. The beach is only about 100 yards long, but there are no tourists, and it’s in this secluded little cove, with rocks on one end and jungle on the other. I like to climb up on the rocks. No one can see you up there, and the view is spectacular.