Ernie Els shares designs for the future with The Els Club Malaysia at CIMB Classic

21 November 2018

Ernie Els meets with The Els Club officials to discuss a bright future for his signature Malaysian designs at CIMB Classic

Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, November 2018: Four-time Major Champion, Ernie Els, took time out of his schedule while on-site during the PGA Tour’s CIMB Classic in Malaysia to meet with Stephen Havrilla, The Els Club Malaysia Group General Manager, and his team to get an update on the progress of his signature designs in the country.

They discussed a wide range of topics, from golf course maturation to Ernie’s future visits, helping to establish, in the eyes of the designer, the strategic vision for each of The Els Club Malaysia locations.

World Golf Hall of Fame member, Ernie Els, said: “I’m extremely proud of The Els Club Malaysia. The courses have turned out really well and the team there are doing a fantastic job. Stephen updated me on how well the courses have progressed since I was last there and the news was very positive.

“The courses are so strong at The Els Club Malaysia that I truly believe the sky is the limit for the destinations, and I’m already planning my next trip out there!”

Stephen Havrilla, The Els Club Malaysia Group General Manager, said: “It’s always great to catch up with Ernie. Amazingly, despite his busy schedule, he’s very hands on with all of his ventures and wants to hear first-hand how we’re doing, so it was a pleasure to give him an update. We spoke about our plans for the future and his feedback was very positive, so we’re looking forward to welcoming him back as soon as possible.”

During his visit, Ernie was also updated on the progress of Desaru Coast, home to The Els Club Desaru Coast. The destination gradually opened its components this year, beginning with the Riverside retail village in June, followed by the Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark in July and the Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast in September. This follows the commencement of operations of The Els Club Desaru Coast’s Ocean Course in September 2016 and the Valley Course in March 2017.

The updates were shared by Roslina Arbak, Chief Executive Officer - Destination Resorts Southern Region and Phil Whitaker, Chief Commercial Officer & Chief Executive Officer Integrated Themed Parks & Attractions of Themed Attraction Resorts & Hotels Sdn Bhd.

The Els Club Malaysia, managed by Troon’s International Division, is comprised of two world-class golf locations in separate locations, each utilising its natural surroundings to create a breath-taking setting for golf. In the north, upon the picturesque island of Langkawi, is The Els Club Teluk Datai. Home to the Ernie Els-designed Rainforest Course, Teluk Datai has earned a reputation amongst the world’s very best courses, with a testing design nestled amongst ancient Malaysian Rainforest that will test every standard of golfer. The facility boasts world-class facilities and is accompanied by outstanding accommodation and off-course activities to offer a comprehensive proposition for the golfing tourist. In 2014, The Els Club Teluk Datai was voted the ‘World’s Best New Golf Course’ at the inaugural World Golf Awards. In 2016, it became the first golf course in the Ernie Els Design portfolio to feature on Golf Digest’s prestigious top-100 courses list.

In the South East, upon the shores of the South China Sea, is The Els Club Desaru Coast, a 45-hole facility with two championship courses designed by Els and his close friend, Vijay Singh. Els’ Ocean Course is an open, expansive design with many of the holes offering a view of the scenic coastline. The course takes inspiration from a traditional links with large rolling greens and testing run off areas aimed to challenge the short game.

The Valley Course, the inspiration of three-time major champion, Singh, offers a different aesthetic, built on a dramatic piece of land, the course owes much of its character and challenges to the sheer undulations and smaller greens.

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The Els Club Malaysia is the third Els Club in the world, following The Els Copperleaf South Africa and The Els Club Dubai. Located in two stunning destinations in Peninsular Malaysia, the island of Langkawi is home to the Rainforest Course at The Els Club Teluk Datai, while The Els Club Desaru Coast is home to the 45 holes of championship golf across the Ocean Course and Valley Course. In addition, The Els Club Desaru Coast boasts a 9-hole, state-of-the-art Els Performance Academy.

Managed by world-renowned management organisation, Troon Golf, the experience, service, and condition are of the highest order and bring a new standard to golf in Southeast Asia, giving members and guests assurance their experience will be first-class each and every time they play.
Situated on the mystical island of Langkawi, The Els Club Teluk Datai is renowned for its spectacular vistas of marbled mountain peaks, virgin rainforest and the emerald green Andaman Sea. Designed by 4-time Major Champion, Ernie Els, and opened in October 2014, the 18-hole championship Rainforest Course is located within Teluk Datai (Datai Bay).
Set in the heart of Desaru Coast, The Els Club Desaru Coast comprises two beautifully manicured golf courses that feature 45 holes in total: Ocean Course, a 27-hole golf course designed over three loops of nine (Ridge, Coast and Lakes) by 4-time Major Champion, Ernie Els and Valley Course, an 18-hole golf course designed in collaboration with Els’ long-standing friend and fellow major champion, Vijay Singh. The Els Club Desaru Coast is the second chapter under The Els Club Malaysia umbrella and was the first golf course to be created upon Desaru Coast when it opened in September 2016 in compliance with strict environmental practices.

Ernie Els Design is a full-service golf course design company wholly owned by its principal, four-time major champion and World Golf Hall of Famer Ernie Els. The international scope of Ernie’s 70 professional career victories is mirrored in the increasingly global reach of his designs, with signature courses and renovations making an impact in emerging and established golf markets alike. Ernie Els Design enjoys unique relationships with the world’s finest developers who share the company’s ambitions, creating attractive destinations that adhere to the principles of sustainable development and sound environmental practice. The company employs the most experienced staff – including leading architect Greg Letsche as its senior design associate – and the latest technology from its two offices in Florida and South Africa. With additional field offices in Malaysia and Dubai, the company provides a near 24-hour service and applies the latest technologies and expertise to service our development partners and clients throughout the world. Since its formation in 2000, the company has received global recognition with a string of prestigious accolades. Notably, in 2015 Ernie was voted ‘Designer of the Year’ at the World Golf Awards. In addition, many of Ernie’s signature courses have won prestigious industry awards including ‘Best New Golf Course in the World’ for The Els Club Teluk Datai in 2014. In 2016, it also became the first layout in the Ernie Els Design portfolio to be listed in Golf Digest’s prestigious ‘World Top-100’.


Headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., Troon is the world’s largest golf management company, with now more than 250 golf courses in its portfolio. Also specializing in homeowner association management, private residence clubs, estate management and associated hospitality venues, the company oversees operations at Troon Golf, Honours Golf and Troon Privé properties located in 36 states and 30 countries. Additionally, 53 Troon facilities enjoy a Top 100 ranking by national or international publications. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland and Dubai UAE, Troon’s International division is committed to developing Troon’s presence throughout the world. This rapidly expanding division now oversees operations at 44 courses in 16 countries including Australia, the United Arab Emirates, England, Russia and Spain with further expansion planned across all regions.


DUNCAN CAMERON - Director of Sales & Marketing
The Els Club Malaysia
The Els Club Malaysia, Level 11, Surian Tower,No. 1 Jalan PJU 7/3,Mutiara Damansara,Petaling Jaya,Selangor 47810,
Tel: 0173845150