Le Club Golf

February 25, 2021

  • Golf de Barbaroux

  • Golf de Moliets

  • Golf international Pont Royal

Architecture and golf, two closely related passions

golf-national-parcours-albatros (32)

The golfer, amateur or professional, always likes to recognise the paw of the architect who designed the golf course on which he is playing. It’s a bit like discovering which chef has made the wonderful dish you enjoy in a quality restaurant.
The first of two articles devoted to excellence in course design, ClubGolf invites you to discover, among its 170 French courses, those bearing the name of a famous golf architect.

Here are the first 7 of our selection: Béthemont, Pont Royal, Rochefort, Courson, Moliets and Barbaroux and the National. A wonderful tour de France of golf architectural excellence.

Béthemont: imagined by Bernhard Langer, two-time winner of the Masters

Situated only 20 minutes from Paris, the Exclusiv Golf de Béthemont is, to date, the only work of Bernhard Langer in France . This course, designed by the two-time winner of the Masters, who shone again in Augusta last year at the age of 63, remains one of the jewels of the Parisian golf scene: the quality of its course and facilities make it a reference appreciated by all.

Nestled in a 65-hectare estate, the golf course is a par 72 of 6035 m which promises new golfing sensations to enthusiasts. The layout inaugurated in 1989 scrupulously respects the wooded and hilly environment of the estate: tight fairways between the trees, holes with steep doglegs, water obstacles, protected bunkers lined with oak trees. Quite technical and often difficult to read, the fairways of Béthemont favour iron play and amateurs will be seduced by the charm of this exceptional course.

Green fees start at only 58 euros.

Information and reservations : click here

Pont Royal : signed Seve Ballesteros !

The Pont Royal International Golf Course is the only French golf course signed by Severiano Ballesteros. It was built in 1991 between Aix en Provence and Avignon, on former hunting grounds, garrigues and pine forests. This par 72 of 6069 m is also punctuated by several water obstacles.

The qualities of intelligence and finesse of the famous Spanish champion can be found in the layout of the course, perfectly integrated into the natural environment, alternating tactical and technical difficulties.

Ideally located in the town of Mallemort, between Aix en Provence and Avignon, 30 minutes from the TGV train stations and Marseille-Provence airport, the golf course offers panoramic views of the Alpilles, the Lubéron, the Durance valley and the Trévaresse massif.

Admirably maintained, the Pont Royal golf course is a tourist and sporting open door to Provence. It offers a real sporting challenge to players of all levels thanks to the variety of its departures and a very diversified layout.
In the heart of Pont Royal, it is possible to discover the training centre of the Durance, its 6-hole course, a unique golf teaching structure in the region, for beginners and experienced players.

Ranked among the best European golf courses, the Pont Royal International Golf Club, after 14 years of hosting the Masters 13 tournament of the Alps Tour, has since 2018 been hosting the “Hopps Open de Provence”, an event of the European Challenge Tour, a European professional circuit.

Infos et reservations : click here

Golf Château de Rochefort : the English vision of Fred Hawtree

The great English architect Fred Hawtree designed the Château de Rochefort golf course which was inaugurated in 1964. With a par 71 of 5627m, this course nestles in a vast and magnificent 110-hectare park in the Paris region, located in the south-west of the Yvelines (78), 45 km from Paris.

The estate has existed since 1898 but it was in the early 1960s that Mr Chamley, who had just bought the estate, decided to turn it into a golf course.

It is a wooded course with a sandy soil allowing to play all year round in excellent conditions. The main difficulties desired by the English architect are present: the fairways are mostly narrow. Mistakes are costly because of the roughs which are not very tolerant and a welcoming forest. The greens are well protected: rather narrow, often raised or lowered, the bunkers are also well protected.

Greenfee from 83 euros

Infos and reservations : Click here

Courson Golf Club: the immense Von Hagge makes strategy a necessity

Designed by Robert Van Hagge (Les Bordes, Seignosse, Kempferhof…) and inaugurated in 1991, the Courson golf course has the particularity of changing its configuration every week. With 4 nine holes hidden across 110 hectares, the managers can offer 6 different combinations.

Thus it is possible to find superb, well-maintained, technical links with several formidable bodies of water and bunkers defending the greens. Thinking about the game strategy will be important. The way in which Von Hagge has profoundly changed the nature of the course, moving huge amounts of earth is remarkable and makes the Courson golf course one of his most successful courses for competition.

Infos and reservations : Click here

Golf de Moliets: a gift from the legend Robert Trent Jones Sr.

The Moliets golf course is 27 holes designed by the legendary Robert Trent Jones and inaugurated in 1986. The 18-hole course takes you on a journey between the Landes forest and the dunes of the department’s long beaches. This par 72 of 6286 m is made up of 4 holes in the forest and 4 holes on the ocean shore on the sand.

As for the 9-hole “Airial”, it measures 1855m: a very nice par 31 appreciated by all, beginners to advanced players.

At Moliets, the architect’s touch is undeniable with the famous jagged bunkers remarkably defending the greens. The fairly wide fairways favour a good pace of play and the sandy ground allows you to play all year round. With fairly long hole links, it may be advisable to opt for a cart for a first visit, even if it is possible to get a second wind with the help of the sea air. One will remember the 4 holes which run along the Atlantic Ocean, perhaps the most beautiful hole links in France! Everyone will open their eyes wide and take out their camera…

As the kilometres go by, you will discover the majestic pine forest of the Landes which stretches as far as the eye can see. The largest forest in France in which the master Trent Jones designed his 14 inland holes.

Note the novelty of the year: at hole N°10, a small stop at the food truck of La Table du Golfeur for a light tiap take away version (Tiap, gascon word meaning “meal”).

Infos and reservations : Click here

Golf de Barbaroux : Pete Dye et fils in the heart of Provence

Created in 1987 in the heart of Provence, in the middle of the forest and vineyards, Barbaroux is one of the most prestigious golf courses in France.

Created in the purest tradition of American golf by the architects Pete Dye and PB Dye, each space, each stretch of water, is a true ode to creativity, combining the love of nature with technical fantasy. Pete Dye has shown a talent for creating this 6053m par 72 from a variety of landscapes, with a special attention to the front tees so that even his most difficult courses can be played and enjoyed by golfers of all levels.

The Barbabroux golf course is a course where strategy plays a predominant role where you have to know how to choose the right angle on the diagonal fairways, ensure your approach on technical and fast greens.

Infos and reservations : Click here

Le Golf National: the treasure of France which received the Ryder Cup

There is no need to present the most famous French course which was consecrated in 2018 by the hosting of the Ryder Cup and which has made hundreds of millions of golfers around the world dream. The National Golf Course, whose architect was Hubert Chesneau, opened its doors in 1991.

Its king course, the Albatross, is a real gem, recognised as one of the best championship courses in Europe.

Home to the French Open since 1991, it is a key stage in the European calendar: this year, the Open will take place there at the beginning of May.
The Albatros combines the traditional aspect of a links course with the modern features of the target course. Rolling greens, vast undulating fairways with innumerable bunkers are on offer and will require the golfer to make a wide variety of shots and use all the clubs in the bag.

The spectacular last 4 holes surrounded by water make the Albatros one of the most beautiful golf courses in Europe where, in 2018, the final act of the Ryder Cup was played.

All golfers are invited to come and face the Albatros course at least once in their lives and to immerse themselves in the Ryder Cup atmosphere after the passage of the golf stars.
Green fees start at 90 euros. Not very expensive for such an experience…

Infos and reservations : Click here

© Jean Lagarde