The Blue Valley course is part of a residential estate to the north of Johannesburg, not too far from the famous Kyalami racetrack. Constructed to the specification of the Gary Player Design Group and opened in 1998, the course has many surprising elevation changes throughout as holes rise and fall over gently undulating terrain.
Blue Valley is a course of contrasting contours, built as it is on the slopes of two hills that form the Rietspruit river valley. Fairways run down or climb up the slopes on the front nine, whilst they run along the slopes on the inward half, until the par five 18th rises back up to the clubhouse.
Feature holes include the 1st and 10th which are both played downhill, either side of a cascading water feature, to an enormous shared green. On the front nine, the 6th is a tough, uphill hole played to an offset green that is less than 20 yards deep. On the back nine, the tee shot at the right doglegged 11th can be played either side of a stream that splits the fairway before taking on a green sitting beside more water.
The four par three holes at Blue Valley are crucial to scoring well here. Two of these holes (the 2nd and 12th) are played to greens on the other side of water at a distance of around 190 yards from the championship tees – more than a flick with a wedge required here to have a chance of marking a three or better on the scorecard!
Blue Valley hosted the South African Strokeplay Championship for amateurs in 2016, won by Irish golfer Jack Hume.