Its low-key launch was in stark contrast to the hype that greeted last week's initial public offering of Tom.com. But for golfing traditionalists with an eye on seeing their shares soar and their handicaps plummet, another Li Ka-shing venture appears set to prove a winner. Built at an estimated cost of $300 million, the Harbour Plaza Golf Club in Dongguan unveiled its first 18 holes last July. A further nine holes came on line at the beginning of September. Although Li, a self-confessed golfing addict, has yet to visit the site, an hour from Shenzhen and Guangzhou, his track record suggests it's a fair bet that the club will prove an above-par investment. With its stringent membership pricing policies it may also help to bring a much-needed semblance of sanity to China's muddled golf club membership market. 'Our owners are dedicated to quality and our aim at Harbour Plaza is to get back to what club golf is all about,' said Kurt Michelsen, general manager at the Robert Trent Jones-Jnr designed course. Harbour Plaza has set out its stall to be different from any other mainland golfing establishment. How? Well, the vast majority of clubs that have sprung up in the first wave of China's golf course construction boom have been built on the flimsy basis of a minimal capital investment with the all too often unfulfilled intention of funding the project via membership sales. At Harbour Plaza, membership marketing did not begin until completion of the first 18 holes and clubhouse. A first for China. And Michelsen is adamant that the club will not get caught up in the discount war to attract members. 'We will protect the value of membership. There won't be discounts or special offers,' he said, a veiled reference to the cut-throat approach of mainland clubs in slashing prices and, with it, plunging the golf club membership market into a state of confusion. As well as sticking to membership fees that range from $280,000 for an individual to $580,000 for a Gold Plus Membership with two nominees, that means no walk-ins and no societies. Exclusivity is the key. It's a stand that few clubs would dare to enforce. While making no apologies for targeting 'people who respect and love the game of golf', Michelsen assures that developing the game in China is also on the agenda. 'That's part of our programme. We have big plans,' he said. Watch this space. Gordon Chen was torn. Should he spend the day at home celebrating the third birthday of his twin daughters or travel to China to spearhead his company's push for a place in the final of the World Corporate Golf Challenge? The Malaysian-born businessman, who has lived in Hong Kong for 12 years, concluded he could not pass up either. He did not regret his decision. Dove-tailing perfectly with his teammates Eddie M. C. Tsang, Patrick Cheng and Teah Yan Kun, 18-handicapper Chen led the Asian Consulting Group (ACG) to victory in the Web Connection Corporate Challenge last Friday. 'We really didn't expect this. It's a big surprise to win,' said Chen, who continued the celebrations with his family when he returned to Hong Kong. And the party's not over for Chen. With his three teammates, Chen will go on to represent Hong Kong in the 27-nation final at the Hyatt La Manga Resort in Murcia, Spain, on May 23-24. Who says lightning doesn't strike twice? Not David Paulon. A week after acing the ninth hole at the Shek O Country Club, Paulon teed-up again at his home course. Wearing the same clothes and cap, and using the same brand and number golf ball, Paulon scored another hole-in-one, this time at the uphill 104-yard fourth.