This is undoubtedly the finest design of globetrotting C.H. Alison, longtime partner of H.S. Colt. He laid out Hirono in the early 1930s in a hilly pine forest slashed by gulleys, clearing wide corridors and positioning greens on the crests of ridges. What makes Hirono special was Alison’s spectacular bunkering, which ranged from diagonal cross bunkers, fearsome carry bunkers and strings of ragged-edged ones. Soon after completion, writers were calling Hirono the Pine Valley of Japan. The restorative work by Tom Mackenzie and Martin Ebert has sharpened the teeth of Alison’s bunkering and restored the lost tees of the par-3 13th, making the hole play once again at an angle to the fronting lake rather than directly across it.
— Derek Duncan and Ron Whitten, Via Golf Digest.
Charles Hugh Alison
Born in England on March 5, 1883. In 1920, he opened a golf course architecture firm with Harry Colt and others, and worked on numerous courses in Europe and the United States. In 1930, he came to Japan at the request of the Tokyo Golf Club. In January 1931, he inspected the proposed site in Hirono and drew up the course design while ensconced at the Oriental Hotel in Kobe.
Via Hirono GC