I played 27 holes at St. George’s Hill on 24th March 2010 in a society and it was a course I was very excited about playing particularly given some of the brilliant reviews on here. The drive through the estate to the golf club certainly heightens the excitement levels, the exclusivity of the estate and the grandness of the houses surrounding the course makes you realise you’re playing somewhere special. The clubhouse is fantastic, it is a beautiful building which has been tastefully decorated and the facilities in both the clubhouse and locker rooms are second to none.
We played the Green course first which is the newer of the nine hole loops and generally regarded as the less challenging, however I thought it was a good test and served as a perfect loosener for the Red and Blue courses. It is short in comparison to the older nines but is tight and has some lovely holes, not the least the 210yd par 3 2nd across the road and the drivable 290yd par 4 6th, in fact the holes 6 thru 9 certainly test how straight you can hit a golf club and although they look easy on the card they can hit you where it hurts if you’re not careful.
The Blue course is a lovely 9 hole loop, the opening par 4 is reasonably long with a tricky approach shot to the green and by no means an easy opener, the 2nd is a very short par 3 (played 100yds on our day) but a large greenside bunker will snaffle anything hit less than pure. As you play through this 9 the holes gradually get longer with some lovely par 4’s and 5’s and some beautiful layouts with strategic greenside bunkering. Hole 9 is an awkward par 4 of moderate length with a wicked right to left sloping fairway and a large bunker positioned 30yds shy of the green, not an easy finish to what is an excellent 9 holes.
The Red Course starts with a great tee shot over heather and gorse and over the road onto a fairway that slops upwards towards the green. There is not a lot to choose between the red and blue as to the which one is better, both have lovely holes and make for a very challenging 18 hole layout that carries an element of risk and reward and enough of a challenge for all levels of golfer. As with the blue course the final hole leads up to the clubhouse and is a lovely par 4 slightly downhill with an uphill approach, a good birdie opportunity if you get a good drive away.
The overall conditioning of the courses was superb bearing in mind it was March and we’ve had a terrible winter, the fairways were excellent and the greens were pretty good despite the rain the previous day. Many of my society colleagues commented on how St. George’s Hill is their favourite of all the Surrey courses and many saying it was 2nd only to Sunningdale. I have been fortunate to play Queenwood recently and although the greens at Queenwood were the best I’d ever seen I’d say the overall layouts compare favourably and I am playing Walton Heath shortly and will be interested to see how that compares also. Overall, a terrific course with a warm friendly atmosphere and should an invite to play land at your door then drop everything as it rightly holds it’s place as one of the best courses in the UK.
Date: March 28, 2010