I’ve seen the Salobre Sur (now the Old) course previously marketed as “The Beauty Course,” with the Salobre Norte (now the New) course termed “The Beast course,” and having played both of them now, I can understand why some golfers will like the Old but not necessarily take to the much quirkier New.
There’s a sign at the 1st tee which says “WELCOME – Challenge yourself with the Tricky New Course and Discover the Real Player That You Have Inside” so you know right from the get go that this probably won’t be an average round of golf. Examine the par rating for the holes on the scorecard and a start of 5-3-5-3-5 might set a few alarm bells off in your head!
The New course followed on from the Old at Salobre a decade ago, laid out on much hillier terrain to the north of the resort, and there have been a few changes made to the opening and closing holes since the layout first opened for play. Holes 1 and 2 used to both play as par fours, with holes 16 and 17 set up as a par five and a par four instead of the par four and par three configuration that’s now in use.
Really, you have to marvel at how some of the holes were actually built on such an inhospitable site, where much of it resembles a cross between the Arizona desert and a lunar landscape. Then again, others might be less charitable and argue that a golf course should never have been constructed on such testing topography.
I thought it was a terrific golfing romp in the hills on an afternoon not to be taken too seriously – how can you possibly treat such an excursion as anything other than a fun round of golf when a buggy sign on the path next to the 11th green advises on the time it will take to drive up to the next tee as: “NEXT TEE 3 MINUTES >”.
My notes cover quite a gamut of hole descriptions, ranging from “SPECTACULAR” to “DAFT!” but, apart from the disappointing par three 2nd, silly par three 12th (which used to be a short par four) and highly contrived closing hole, I really enjoyed my round on the New course at Salobre.
Not wishing to sound too disparaging, it’s definitely worth playing for a good chuckle – just remember to bring some extra balls in your golf bag… and don’t dare try to walk the course as you’ll probably kill yourself in the attempt!
Date: June 12, 2019