The Royal Hong Kong Golf Club was formed on Friday 10th May 1889 by “thirteen golfing enthusiasts”. This group had difficulty finding any open land suitable for golf, but eventually obtained permission to play at Happy Valley. This area was used for football, polo, hockey and military parades, so the golfers had to take their turn at using the ground.

By 1891 the membership had grown to over 100, so a small shed was built as a Clubhouse where refreshments were served. Due to the “crowded conditions”, from 1896 ladies were only permitted to play golf on a very restricted basis.

As the pressure on starting times grew, the Captain and Club officials were forced to find an additional location. They found Deep Water Bay, which besides providing an area for a small course also provided perfect bathing.

The first lease for the land at Deep Water Bay was agreed with Government in September 1898. A Clubhouse was erected in this same year. Members used to ride round to the course in boats or ride ponies over Wong Nai Chong Gap, whilst the caddies walked carrying the clubs and picnic supplies.

In 1903 Happy Valley was turned over exclusively to the Golf Club, except for Wednesdays and Saturdays when soccer and cricket were played. Ladies were only allowed to play on Sundays.

In 1911, thanks to the foresight of men such as E.R. Halifax, the District Officer North (Taipo) negotiations took place with the Government and local farmers to secure sufficient land in Fanling to build a full 18 holes. The Old Course was laid by the end of 1911 and additional land was acquired in the late 1920’s for the New Course which was opened for play in November 1931.

The end of the War saw the Club virtually bankrupt with the courses at Fanling and Deep Water Bay in very poor condition. However, things moved ahead with strong support from members and local companies, to the extent that a third course, the Eden Course, was added in 1970.

The quality of The Hong Kong Golf Club is such that it has been the home of The Hong Kong Open since 1959.

The Club celebrated its Centenary in 1989 and has entered its second hundred years recognised as one of the leading golf clubs worldwide. In 1996, at the Annual General Meeting of the Club, the Royal nomenclature was dropped. The Club is now known as The Hong Kong Golf Club.

Past Presidents

1889 – 1891 H.E. Sir William Des Voeux, KCMG
1891 – 1898 H.E. Sir William Robinson, KCMG
1911 H.E. Sir Frederick Lugard, GCMG
1912 – 1919 H.E. Sir Francis Henry May, GCMG
1921 – 1923 A.G. Stephen
1924 A.H. Ferguson
1925 Hon. E.R. Hallifax, CBE, CMG
1983 – 1991 Sir Gordon Macwhinnie, CBE
1995 – 2001 L.C.K. Yung
2001 – 2005 Dr. George Choa, GBS, CBE, KSt.J, JP
2005 – 2009 H.C.H. Loh
2009 – 2013 A.R. Hamilton
2013 – 2014 M.K.T. Cheung

Past Captains

2011 - 2020

2011 H. Cheng Jr
2012 P.Y. Reed
2013 S. Cheng
2014 M.J. Roberts
2015 K.S.K. Lam
2016 K.S.K. Lam
2017 A.C.C. Wong

2001 - 2010

2001 Dr. R. Lu
2002 T. Ling
2003 J.M.H. Grimsdick
2004 A. S. L. Cheng
2005 Hon. Mr. Justice W.D. Stone
2006 C. K. M. Kwok
2007 A.E.M. Laband
2008 R.C.K. Lee
2009 N. Li
2010 J.K. Ball

1991 - 2000

1991 P. W. Wight
1992 S. T. S. Wong
1993 W. E. Mocatta
1994 H. K. Cheng
1995 R. Carstairs
1996 D. R. Bradshaw
1997 M. A. Choa
1998 R. T. Go
1999 H. M. V. de Lacy Staunton
2000 H. M. V. de Lacy Staunton

1981 - 1990

1981 H. H. Murdoch
1982 Hon. Mr. Justice Bewley
1983 H. S. Cheng
1984 A. R. Hamilton
1985 M. K. T. Cheung
1986 A. F. Sutcliffe
1987 H. C. H. Loh
1988 M.J.E. Thornhill
1989 M.J.E. Thornhill
1990 W. K. Lam

1971 - 1980

1971 C. D. St. Q. Fletcher
1972 Dr. G. Choa
1973 W. D. Leighton
1974 P. E. Hammond
1975 J. W. Browning
1976 D. J. T. McKenzie
1977 W. S. Woo
1978 D. M. Dudgeon
1979 H. H. A. Webb
1980 M. J. Steele

1961 - 1970

1961 R. R. Coombs
1962 W. C. Bowling
1963 R. C. Gairdner
1964 N. P. Downie
1965 J. D. Clague
1966 J. A. Cheetham
1967 G. M. Macwhinnie
1968 G. M. Macwhinnie
1969 G. M. Macwhinnie
1970 W. G. Minto

1951 - 1960

1951 W. G. Robertson
1952 G. O. W. Stewart
1953 H. R. Cleland
1954 W. O. Davis
1955 J. R. Collis
1956 S. S. Gordon
1957 L. Goldman
1958 T. F. R. Waters
1959 W. S. Vaughan
1960 G. G. D. Carter

1941 - 1950

1941 A.K. Mackenzie
1946 D. H. Blake
1947 J. A. D. Morrison
1948 J. A. D. Morrison
1949 D. S. Robb
1950 F. D. Hunter

1931 - 1940

1931 A.B. Stewart
1932 L.G.S. Dodwell
1933 K.S. Morrison
1934 N. Lockhart Smith
1935 S.H. Dodwell
1936 S.H. Dodwell
1937 G. Gilmore
1938 G.S. Archbutt
1939 G.S. Archbutt
1940 R. Young

1921 - 1930

1921 T.W. Hill
1922 A.B. Stewart
1923 A.B. Stewart
1924 G.S. Archbutt
1925 N. Lockhart Smith
1926 E. Davidson
1927 E.R. Hallifax
1928 L.S. Greenhill
1929 G.S. Archbutt
1930 A.B. Stewart

1911 - 1920

1911 H.W. Robertson
1912 E.J. Grist
1913 E.J. Grist
1914 E.J. Grist
1915 A.M. Thomson
1916 S.H. Dodwell
1917 S.H. Dodwell
1918 David Landale
1919 G.M. Young
1920 P.H. Holyoak

1901 - 1910

1901 Clement Palmer
1902 W.J. Saunders
1903 H.W. Robertson
1904 C.W. May
1905 C.A. Tomes
1906 E.J. Grist
1907 W.J. Saunders
1908 W.J. Gresson
1909 W.J. Gresson
1910 C.E. Anton

1891 - 1900

1891 Fielding Clarke
1892 Fielding Clarke
1893 Major F.W. Bennet (RE)
1894 Commodore G.H.T. Boyes (RN)
1895 Commodore G.H.T. Boyes (RN)
1896 Comdr. R.M. Rumsey (RN ret’d)
1897 Gershom Stewart
1898 Thomas Jackson
1899 John Thurburn
1900 Edward A. Ram

1880 - 1890

1889 Comdr R.M. Rumsey (RN ret’d)
1890 Comdr R.M. Rumsey (RN ret’d)

1889

The Royal Hong Kong Golf Club is formed by “thirteen golfing enthusiasts”. The group has difficulty finding any open land suitable for golf, but eventually obtains permission to play at Happy Valley.


1891

Membership passes the 100 mark; a small shed is built as a Clubhouse where refreshments are served. Due to “crowded conditions”, from 1896, ladies are only permitted to play golf on a very restricted basis.


1898

As the pressure on starting times grows, the Captain and Club officials are forced to find an additional location. A lease for the land at Deep Water Bay is agreed with Government, and a Clubhouse is erected the same year.


1903

Happy Valley is turned over exclusively to the Golf Club, except for Wednesdays and Saturdays when soccer and cricket are played. Ladies are only allowed to play on Sundays.


1911

Following protracted negotiations with Government and local farmers, sufficient land in Fanling is secured to build a full 18 holes. The Old Course is laid by the end of the year.


1931

The New Course in Fanling is opened for play on additional land acquired in the late 1920’s.


1941

With war clouds gathering, Government terminates the Club’s tenancy of Deep Water Bay, converting the Clubhouse and course for use as a supply depot for the armed forces, signifying the end of golf in Hong Kong for the next four years.


1947

The Club convenes its first Annual General Meeting since 1940. The Club hands over its Happy Valley property over to Government in view of the lack of open spaces in Hong Kong. Despite limited financial resources, the Club commences the rehabilitation of the Fanling course, a mammoth and costly undertaking that will continue for more than a decade.


1959

The Club hosts the first Hong Kong Open, which it continues to do to this day, over the years boasting international Champions such as Peter Thomson (1960, 1965 and 1967), Lu Liang-Huan (1959 and 1974), Tom Watson (1992), Jose-Maria Olazabal (2001) and in recent years, Rory McIlroy (2012) and Justin Rose (2015). The most decorated champion in the events history, with four wins, is Spain’s Miguel Angel Jimenez (2005, 2008, 2012 and 2014).


1963

The Fanling Development Scheme, authorising extension of the Clubhouse and the issue of debentures to cover the cost, is approved at an Extraordinary General Meeting.


1964

Arnold Palmer stages a clinic and exhibition match at Fanling. Lu Liang-huan, the winner of the first Hong Kong Open in 1959 and a former resident professional at Fanling, scores 70 versus Palmer’s 68.


1968

The Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club agrees to lease some 30 acres of land at Beas River to the Club for the development of the Eden Course in Fanling into a full-length 18-hole championship course.


1970

The new Eden Course opens for play.


1989

The Club celebrates its Centenary, and enters its second hundred years recognised as one of the leading golf clubs worldwide.


1990

The first Johnnie Walker Classic in Asia is played at the Club. Nick Faldo wins after shooting a course record 62. Not to be outdone, Bernhard Langer shoots a 63 to win the Hong Kong Open the following year.


1996

At the Club’s Annual General Meeting, the Royal nomenclature is dropped, and henceforward the club is known as The Hong Kong Golf Club.