Trump National Doral (The Blue Monster)

Trump National Doral (The Blue Monster) – Played 2016

  • Rankings: Golf Digest Public #84, Golf Magazine Public #100
  • Location: 4400 N.W. 87th Avenue, Miami, Florida
  • Year: 1961, 2014 (Update)
  • Architect: Dick Wilson (Original), Gil Hanse (Update)
  • Course Access: Resort
  • Walking Rules: Carts & Caddies Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 7,590 yards, Par 72, 77.4 Rating/146 Slope
  • Gold: 7,034 yards, Par 72, 75.0 Rating/140 Slope
  • Blue: 6,698 yards, Par 72, 73.5 Rating/139 Slope
  • White: 6,334 yards, Par 72, 71.7 Rating/139 Slope
  • Red: 5,463 yards, Par 72, 72.9 Rating/138 Slope

The final course of this trip was to be The Blue Monster at Trump National Doral.  The course is now the former host of the WGC Cadillac Championship on the PGA Tour.  It has been around since the 1960’s, but had lot some of its original luster.  I wasn’t really sure where this property was located from watching on TV.  I was surprised to learn that it is in a pretty industrial area with a lot of business around it.  Then you make a few turns and boom you are there.  It is also very close to the Miami airport.

The firebrand Donald Trump bought the property a few years ago and The Blue Monster underwent a complete redesign from Gil Hanse.  The property also has 54 other holes as well as the Jim McLean Golf School and a hotel.  I can’t really go into much on the hotel since I didn’t stay there, but I can show you some pictures of what surrounds the course.  Below is the clubhouse, understated right?

TND - CLUB 1This fountain is next to the first tee.  Interesting.

TND - CLUB 2Here is a panorama shot of some of the property.

TND - CLUB 3The club also has villas named after famous players right on site.  This one is the Phil Mickelson villa.  I caught a shot of this one as I was leaving.

TND - VillaMr. Trump likes to put his name on things.  These are the paper towels used in the clubhouse restroom.  Yikes!

TND - CLUB 4Even the clock was more ornate than I have usually seen.

TND - CLUB 5The driving range is quite large with the McLean school on the other end.

TND - RANGE 1The scorecard, seen below, is one of the fancier ones I have come across.

TND - SCOREHole 1 – 543 yards – Par 5

I played the blue tees at just under 6,700 yards.  There were five people ahead of me on the entire course.  I was off as a single.  Here we go.  The first hole eases you into the round with a good bit of room off the tee.

TND 1-1The second shot will likely be a long one.

TND 1-2Hopefully you can run one up close to the green.  As you can see it is fronted by a couple bunkers with a pond on the right.  With a short club however this should be a green light.

TND 1-3Hole 2 – 364 yards – Par 4

This hole isn’t overly long, but there is plenty of sand to get you.  An accurate tee shot is needed.

TND 2-1The second shot is seen below.  The green is surrounded by bunkers and you don’t want to be in one of them.

TND 2-2The green is slanted toward you in the fairway.  You can see the contours here.

TND 2-3This is the view from behind the green.

TND 2-4Hole 3 – 393 yards – Par 4

Below is a look at the hole markers.

TND 3-1This is an intimidating tee shot.  The water lurks on the right all the way down the hole.  The left side is pinched in by bunkers.  If you can work a small fade away from the bunkers you will set yourself up in the fairway.

TND 3-2I erred towards the bunkers and this is the angle I was left with.  Overall, this is a good spot since you don’t have to go over too much water.

TND 3-3I like the way this green is angled to the fairway.  It is a pretty shallow putting surface.

TND 3-4Here is a closer look.

TND 3-5Hole 4 – 176 yards – Par 3

The first of the short holes is a tough one.  Water all in front to the right and behind.  An accurate tee shot is a must here.

TND 4-1The green is adequate in size and slopes from right to left (towards us here).  You can see the multiple ridges as well.

TND 4-2Hole 5 – 378 yards – Par 4

This is a hole that fits my eye.  It bends to the left and favors a draw.  Depending on how far you hit it you can go with less than driver.

TND 5-1The approach plays to a green with, you guessed it, more sand.  There is an avenue between the bunkers you can play through.

TND 5-2Below you can see some of the slope in the green.

TND 5-3Hole 6 – 402 yards – Par 4

Here we have the first par 4 over 400 yards.  You will need a good drive here out between the bunkers.  I’m sure some of the pros just carry the one on the left.

TND 6-1I couldn’t carry the bunker, but I was still left in a good spot.  See the angle from the left side of the fairway below.

TND 6-2Here is a look at the green.

TND 6-3Hole 7 – 435 yards – Par 4

This hole is a tough one.  You need to bust it off this tee.  A good line is over the right tee marker of the red tee box.

TND 7-1The second shot is a long one from here.  Unless you play a big fade into the green you will have to go over some of the water.  There is a bank in front so you will need to take enough club.

TND 7-2The green is bordered by some deep bunkers, but they are in pristine condition like the rest of the golf course.  Bunker shots out here were so predictable.  I could play out of that sand every day.

TND 7-3The green has a bit of the ridge running through the middle.  Other than that most of the slope is subtle.

TND 7-4Hole 8 – 497 yards – Par 5

This was one of the holes I wish I had a caddie on.  The line is tough to pick out.  A little left of the American flag is a safe line.

TND 8-1The second shot brings water into play.  There is some room short of the green if you don’t catch all of it.

TND 8-2I laid back a little too far.  This angle brings all the sand into play.  You need to be precise from here.

TND 8-3Here is a look at the putting surface.  It is pretty large.

TND 8-4Hole 9 – 185 yards – Par 3

The difficult par three trend continues here.  It is a long shot with a smaller green.  There is some room out to the left to bail if you fight the miss right.  Obviously the water is the biggest obstacle here.

TND 9-1Hole 10 – 560 yards – Par 5

This tee shot is a tough one.  If you are a long hitter you can go further left.  I was confined to a line up the right side of the water hazard.

TND 10-1The second shot is a little less hazardous, but it is quite long.  There are some bunkers up the right side to avoid.

TND 10-2Here is the third shot.  The green is slightly elevated, but open in the front.  The bunker on the left is vicious.

TND 10-3Below you can see the slope of the green that is quite pronounced.

TND 10-4Hole 11 – 326 yards – Par 4

This hole gives the longer hitter some options.  You can definitely go for the green.  You can see the flag in the middle of the photo.  The lay up here actually requires more thought.

TND 11-1I don’t have 300+ in my bag so I hit long iron off the tee and was left with the shot below.  This is a wedge at most.  Having the shorter club for precision is beneficial because there is plenty of sand.

TND 11-2Below is a look at the putting surface.

TND 11-3This look from behind gives you a better idea of the slope in the green.

TND 11-4Hole 12 – 573 yards – Par 5

This is a brutish par five.  This one reminds you that you are at a PGA Tour venue.  All I can say here is hit is as good as you can.

TND 12-1Below is a look at the second shot.  We are still a long way out.

TND 12-2The green is pretty small.  To me that means the architect meant for you to hit a shorter club into it.  As you would expect there is plenty of sand around with some especially deep bunkers.

TND 12-3Here is a closer look to show just how narrow the green opening is.

TND 12-4Here is another angle.

TND 12-5Hole 13 – 210 yards – Par 3

Man, again?  These one shot holes are beastly out here.  This one doesn’t have any water at least.  An accurate long iron shot is what you need here.  You can run one up on the front left side.

TND 13-1Here is a look at the green.

TND 13-2Hole 14 – 418 yards – Par 4

This hole has a tighter landing area than some of the others.  The trees in the middle of the photo are the line.  Longer players can take on the bunkers on the left.

TND 14-1I just had to show you guys the on-course bathroom.  Suffice it to say, this is the nicest restroom I have seen on a course yet.

TND 14-2The approach plays to a raised green fronted by a massive sand trap.  There is a bit of a false front as well.

TND 14-3This green has quite a bit of contouring as you see below.  Chipping around this green is difficult.

TND 14-4Here is another angle to give you the full perspective of the slopes.

TND 14-5Hole 15 – 133 yards – Par 3

Whew, finally we get a little breather on the par threes.  This one should require only a short iron or wedge.  There is plenty of water to avoid, but with the shorter club it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

TND 15-1The green is guarded by a bunker as seen below.  The slope isn’t too crazy on this one.

TND 15-2Hole 16 – 313 yards – Par 4

This one gives the pros a choice.  They can definitely get to the green, but there is plenty of water to carry.  The more sensible play is out to the right with a shot of 200 yards.

TND 16-1Here is a closer look at the line to the green.

TND 16-2The approach shot is seen below.  There is plenty of sand to navigate over.

TND 16-3The green is medium sized.  You wouldn’t want to small of a green to dissuade the bombers from going for it.

TND 16-4Hole 17 – 386 yards – Par 4

This hole bends slightly to the right.  Not too much going on with this tee shot.

TND 17-1The second shot deals with bunkers yet again.  There is room to miss in front of this green though.

TND 17-2This green is on the flatter side.  There is some gentle sloping as you can see below.  You can make some putts on this putting surface.

TND 17-3Hole 18 – 406 yards – Par 4

Here she is!  This is where the Monster get its name.  This is a tough tee shot in my mind because of the depth perception.  It was tough to see exactly how far the water goes.

TND 18-1Here is a little closer look to show you what I mean.

TND 18-2The approach doesn’t look all that tough, but you may be forgetting about the water that fronts the green.  It extends well out to the left to gobble up any pulls as well.  In addition, this is a shot of about 180 yards.  Luckily, the green has some room to the right.

TND 18-3In case you forgot where you were!

TND 18-4Here is a closer look at the green to show you how the water comes right up to it.

TND 18-5Below is a different angle of the green.

TND 18-6You can see the ridges in the green below.  Imagine this with grandstands all around and having a putt to win.

TND 18-7Wow!  Regardless of what you think about it’s owner, this resort is something else.  This was one of the best conditioned courses I have ever played.  They definitely make you pay a premium for that.  It is a treat to play a course in this kind of shape every once in a while.  It’s also fun to play the shots the pros play.  Overall, it was a wonderful experience that I would highly recommend.

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2 thoughts on “Trump National Doral (The Blue Monster)

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