I live in the San Diego area and play Maderas a couple of times a year. The best public 'rota' in this area to me are: Torrey Pines (both), Coronado, Barona Creek, and Maderas. I always enjoy my round at Maderas as a 'good' golf course will make you use every club in your bag.
The other reviews of Maderas are spot on, so I will not duplicate. It is a challenging course, but also very enjoyable to play. There are good elevation changes and side-hill lies to make you think a little bit before playing the shots. Approach club selection is probably the biggest consistent challenge. The par 5 #14 is a great example as I typically up-club 3 clubs on the approach.
I do seem to play more driver than they other reviewers. #6 is a great example. The first-timer will see a short par 4 with a very narrow landing area framed by trees. So they will play a long iron on hybrid for accuracy and then a PW. I discovered that the tree on the left is much closer than it looks - think the Road Hole at St Andrews - and rip it over it. The fairway feeds towards the green leaving an eagle chip.
You will might see someone well known on the driving range. Charlie Hoffman and Brenden Steele practice there. Last time I had a UCLA female collegian next to me.
Lastly, I NEVER play there at the rack rate. Yes it is too expensive. But the there are many discount options available.
Date: January 05, 2018