Verdura (West) - Sicily - Italy

Verdura Golf & Spa Resort,
S.S. 115 Km 131,
92019 Sciacca,

  • +39 092 599 8001

  • António Castelo

  • Kyle Phillips

  • Giacamo Dovetta

Visit for a golf holiday at Verdura

No expense was spared during the construction of the 5-star Verdura resort on the south west coast of Sicily and the 45-hole golf complex at its centre is one of the best sporting facilities to be found anywhere in the Mediterranean region.

Designed by the esteemed American architect Kyle Phillips, the two championship 18-hole layouts – East and West – are the golfing stars of the show at Verdura and they are well supported by a 9-hole par three course, a driving range and practice area.

The East is arranged as two returning circuits of nine holes whilst the West enjoys a traditional out-and-back routing. Cleverly, the arrangement of holes on both courses allows a composite course to be created – featuring the best holes on each layout – enabling a tournament course to be created at Verdura. In 2012 the Sicilian Open was played on a composite course, which comprised mainly of holes from the West course. Denmark’s Thorbjorn Olesen held off a final-day course record equalling charge of 64 by England’s Chris Wood to win the event by one shot, claiming his inaugural European Tour title.

A couple of holes on the front nine of the West course skirt an old railway line (the par three 3rd has a restored station in the background) before the blue waters of the Med are reached at holes 8 and 9, a pair of two shotters that conclude a stretch of five straight par fours on the outward half.

Returning for home, par fives at holes 11 and 14 help steer the routing towards the final four holes where the round finishes with a flourish along the seashore. The 16th and 18th are tough par fours, rated stroke index 2 and 4 whilst the 15th and 17th are testing par threes played against beautiful seaside backdrops.

Verdura Resort, Rocco Forte's Sicilian Jewel
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Reviews for Verdura (West)

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Description: A couple of holes on the front nine of the West course at the Verdura Golf Resort skirt an old railway line before the blue waters of the Mediterranean are reached at holes 8 and 9… Rating: 5.7 out of 6 Reviews: 3

Me and my partner stayed and played at Donnafugata and Verdura on a two destination golf holiday in September 2017.

After the disappointment of Donnafugata (also reviewed) the two courses at Verdura were a revelation. I had been looking forward to playing a Kyle Phillips’ designed course since seeing the glowing reviews of Kingsbarns and I was not disappointed. These are both stunning gems, beautifully conditioned, and in my opinion should be amongst the top courses in Europe.

It is hard to pick a favourite between the East and the West, as they are similar in character and each a joy to play. There is hardly a weak hole amongst the 36 and both courses end with stunningly picturesque (and difficult) stretches of holes.

As both courses are on the coast the wind largely dictates the difficulty, but both courses generally have wide enough fairways to enjoy the round no matter what the conditions. The difficulty generally lies with getting close to the pins on the large and undulating putting surfaces.

On the West course, holes 15 to 18 form a loop away and then back to the watchtower clubhouse. They make a fine climax to the round and a real test for anyone with a good card going up to that point. 15 and 17 are par threes in different directions, and generally exposed to cross winds. 17 is shorter, but more intimidating as visually it gives the impression of anything long or left being destined for the Med! The 16th is all about hitting the fairway in preparation for a long second into a large green. The staff claim that John Daly referred to the 18th on the West as the ‘Pebble Beach of Europe’ and if true it is easy to see why – all down the left of the hole there is simply a wooden fence separating the course from a cliff and the blue waters of the Med! Having negotiated an intimidating tee shot, a long second is played to an undulating green positioned under the clubhouse bar, with the Med once again waiting to claim a pulled approach! A tricky two putt and time for a well earned drink...

The Rocco Forte hotel around which these courses are designed is expensive, but for those able to afford the prices Verdura is a stunning location for a golf holiday.

6 / 6
Verdura (West)
October 21, 2017

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There is little between them but I thought the West course had the edge over the East in terms of all round enjoyment. In a similar vein to its companion course it features a friendly opening, this time it’s a par 5 requiring a drive and a lay-up, leaving a simple pitch to a large, slightly elevated and undulating green. Elevated tees or greens are a feature of the early holes and you will be well into your swing by the time you reach the fantastic 5th hole which appears to be a highest point of the course. The view from the tee is simply stunning. The Med is gleaming in the distance and the resort properties appear over the orange groves to the right. The fairway is broad but in keeping with most of the par 4s it requires two of your very best to reach the green. There is a big dip on then fairway sadly too far to reach from the tee for all but the very big hitters. This was one of my favourite holes on the resort. By the time you reach the 8th you really ought to be enjoying yourself thoroughly but here you will need to concentrate, as it plays fairly tight off the tee. The line is the chink of blue Med in the distance. The green is virtually on the beach and if you look hard you will find an old WW2 pillbox in the undergrowth. The next outstanding hole is the par 3 10th which skirts a pond put in by architect Kyle Phillips to attract wildlife (and plenty of balls!) Then comes the lovely par 5 11th running beside the Verdura River hidden by a long row of eucalyptus trees. You might hear cowbells clanging as you walk the fairway. Two more long par 4s set up a five-hole finale that rivals any closing stretch I have encountered over the years. The 14th is a long flat par 5 with a green in front of the clubhouse. You then turn onto the shoreline for four memorable holes, including two picture book par 3s, a fantastic strategically demanding tight par four and a typical Phillips finishing hole back to the 14th century Arabic defence tower that serves as the clubhouse. @andywaple @drivinggolf
5 / 6
Verdura (West)
November 05, 2014

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The fact that I'm writing the first review for this course proves that Sicily is not yet a top golfing destination. And wrongly so, as both Donnafugata and Verdura offer great courses. Unlike Algarve, very little traffic so the courses are in overall better condition. For the time being at least. Still can't decide which of the East or West I preferred. The greens were better on the East though. One little precision, the East course was the one that had most holes on the composite course for the Sicilian Open of last year. Cedric
6 / 6
Verdura (West)
May 15, 2013

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