Haiyang Tiger Beach Golf Club
In addition to overseeing a diverse group of companies in the fields of financial investment, real estate development, property management, office IT integration engineering and golf courses, the 56-year-old Taiwanese is an avid collector of Chinese antiques. Among his passions are paintings, carvings and other antiquities, particularly those from the Ming and Shang dynasties.
The unique aspect of Tiger Beach, one of the few true links courses in Asia, is that is a concept course that was made into a reality under Beta’s direct supervision.
Despite having no previous experience in the construction and design of a golf course, Beta used a primitive method to create Tiger Beach based on his internal blueprint.
As a result, the efforts and money involved in developing the course were several times that of courses which used professional designers.
When Tiger Beach was completed in June 2002 the 18-hole course immediately drew praise from many in the golf industry for the unique design of its fairways and the natural integration with its surroundings.
In June 2002, the course received its highest honour when a sister-link relationship was established with Scotland’s Carnoustie Golf Links. It was the first time the famed British Open venue had ever twinned with another course in its 300 year history.
The establishment of the sister-link relationship created a huge commotion throughout the international golf community. The Cinderella story of a remote Chinese course designed by an amateur becoming linked with one of Europe’s top-10 courses, not to mention a national treasure in Scotland, was unprecedented. The British media covered the story with great importance.
Since then, the legend of Tiger Beach has grown wider and farther. Several international press members and golf professionals have come to Shandong to experience the course for themselves. A series of photos of the course were also taken by professional golf photographer Richard Castka and were displayed at the Volvo China Open held in September 2002 at the Shanghai Silport Golf Club.
The photos captured the ever-changing natural elements that embody the course. For many seeing the photos for the first time, it was hard for them to believe that such a course was created and designed by a person with no formal design experience.
Understandably, the creation of Tiger Beach has stirred a number of questions among the golf fraternity:
– Why was a world-renowned course in Carnoustie Golf Links interested in establishing a sister-link relationship with Tiger Beach with no apparent economic motive?
– What was Beta Soong’s background and interest in constructing Tiger Beach?
– How was Tiger Beach Golf Links built?
– Who is the person behind the creation of Tiger Beach?
– How is it possible that Tiger Beach achieved such accomplishment within only two years of operation?
All of the questions are shrouded in mystery and over time will only add to the mystique and legend of the Tiger Beach Golf Links.
Chinese Name:海阳旭宝高尔夫俱乐部 (18洞)