ANTIGUA, Guatemala - Fuego Maya Golf Course at La Reunion Resort is the first design project for Pete Dye and son Perry in Central America, and it may be one of their most interesting, scenic and challenging.
Built on the side of the Fuego volcano, Fuego Maya (which means Mayan Fire in Spanish) features steep slopes with terrific scenery of the mountains and resort. On a clear day, the top of Fuego is visible from almost everywhere on the golf course.
This is the land of "eternal spring." Because the elevation of nearly 4,000 feet keeps it cool at night, the Dyes were able to install bentgrass greens and fairways and bluegrass rough.
The holes on this 7,300-yard par 72 meander up and down Fuego, providing an interesting array of blind tee shots and approaches as well as holes that are framed by water hazards and wildflowers.
By the time you get to the 10th, a dogleg right that plays around a canyon to an uphill green with a false front, you need to be hitting the ball solid and on target.
With several sets of tees, there are many different configurations, although none of them are easy. Even from the forward tees, you still have to be able to hit crisp approach shots.
The golf course ends with a terrific stretch: a par 5 that's almost 700 yards, a scenic par 3 with a waterfall to the right, and a downhill finishing hole in which you will almost surely have an uneven lie to a challenging approach.