Valderrama is a bit like the "The Emperor's New Clothes", the golfing media seem to rate this as either the best (or second best) course in Continental Europe in fear of being considered stupid and unfit for their job. For those who like, and perhaps follow the Robert Trent Jones Trail, then I am sure they will love the experience and laud it. Personally I am pleased to have played here but there are better courses on mainland Europe and better courses even on the Costa del Sol. Let’s get the positives out of the way before I mention a few of the negatives... the greens were fabulous and putted well and so they should… no more than 50 people usually play the course on any given day. The course is fair and not tricked up (apart from the odd tree in the middle of the fairway) but the majority of holes are only slightly above average and there are at least a couple of weak holes, especially some of the par threes. Sure the 17th is an interesting hole and has seen some action (as has the 18th at the Belfry) but it's out of character with the rest of the course. Frankly there are too few great holes in my humble view. By all means, cough up the €275 per round to play here but don’t expect to play a truly great golf course and perhaps you won’t come away feeling as disappointed as I did.
Date: June 15, 2008