Review for Fontainebleau

Reviewer Score:


FB is a very interesting golf course built on a terrific piece of land. The whole place just eludes charm. The clubhouse is grand and imposing and the changing rooms are old school. The practice putting green is vast and sits in front of the club house. The short game area is tidy and located between the 1st and 18th fairways. The range is short (I could comfortably hit the back fence with a 4 iron, so you can’t hit woods) and a little rough around the edges.

The course is fantastic, its cut into the forest on a particularly rocky piece of the terrain so there are many boulders on the course that only add to the intrigue of the course and help make some of the holes standout even more.

FB is a tough test of golf. It is long in places. Many of the greens have multiple tiers and are very undulating, so if you get on the wrong side of the green or on the wrong tier, three putting is very easy (or in my case four putting). Overall the course is fair as it does throw a few shorter par 4s at you, to help you pick up those lost shots.

The conditioning was generally good. I had read some negative reports about this in the run up to my visit so I was apprehensive about what would greet me. I was pleasantly surprised; the course was generally quite green (setting aside the first hole) which came as a surprise given the unprecedented hot weather. The greens were excellent, not super quick (which was a relief) but they ran very true. The tee boxes were very mixed and a couple could use some tender love and care. The course is well bunkered (they are strategically well placed, I should know given that I found myself in quite a few fairway bunkers) but they did contain a lot of stones (this really annoys me, I should only have to worry about getting out of the bunker and not whether I am going to take a chunk out of my 56 degree wedge as a result), however as previously mentioned this is a rocky course so this is possibly unavoidable.

When on holiday and playing an expensive course I like to make a day of it and try to experience the whole package, so my wife joined me for a drink and some lunch after my round. The club house staff were excellent, very attentive and chatty and the food was of an extremely high quality (I suppose it is France after all) and the steak tartare is a treat (beats the cheese and pickle sandwich served up in most UK and Ireland club houses!).

I have given the course five balls and I think with a little investment in the right areas this course could be a five and half ball course.

If in the area this course is not to be missed and although expensive, it is a great day out.

Date: July 31, 2018

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