Top 30 Golf Courses of Germany 2014
Top 100 Golf Courses starts a complete overhaul of the German rankings
8 January 2014
There must be some interesting golf to discover in a country with more than 700 courses, but the previous rankings haven't always reflected that and sometimes could not keep up with the dynamics of the market. Germany is one of the few countries where golf is still growing (albeit slowly), and the bulk of this growth has happened after 1990.
May I introduce myself? My name is Ulrich Mayring, I live in Frankfurt am Main and have taken over the role of German Correspondent for Top 100 Golf Courses. Although the job is a marathon, not a sprint, there have already been some marked improvements for the 2014 edition of the German golf course rankings:
· Outdated information was either replaced with current data or removed.
· Some uninformative course descriptions were rewritten from scratch.
· The number of glaring omissions was reduced by adding 10 new courses.
· And there was of course significant movement within the Top 30.
All this will have to continue in 2014 and beyond, especially given that about half of the current Top 30 courses are still pending review. In addition, more than twenty-five courses are knocking on the door of at least Gem status and will be added over time. Combined with the twenty current Gems the next milestone will be producing a solid German Top 50.
In most countries the rankings are dominated by classic courses that were designed by a renowned architect and have been faithfully preserved. Germany does not have many classics, so Hamburger Golf Club Falkenstein (Harry Colt with John Morrison) is the perennial leader and there is absolutely no reason to change that.
The top three are rounded out by Budersand, Germany’s only 18-hole links course, and the Faldo course at Sporting Club Berlin, no surprises there. The very controversial and equally spectacular Winston Links jumped from 21 to 4, thanks to massive recognition by various third party sources. Likewise, the introduction of new (and also controversial) holes helped the glorious heathland track at St Dionys to progress from 11 to 5.
The first new entry is Mittelrheinischer Golf Club Bad Ems at 11, another one of those rare Golden Age layouts that has stood the test of time (and survived World War II). Berlin Wannsee at 17 and Feldafing at 28 are also newcomers that ride on the classic ticket.
However, we also give a nod to modern developments by advancing fun-filled Hardenberg Niedersachsen from 22 to 14 and debuting roaring Wendelinus at 18, picturesque Schloss Langenstein at 21, well-balanced Jakobsberg at 22 and death-defying Taunus-Weilrod at 26.
Finally, in the semi-classic category (about 1950 to 1980) we observe little movement among the top guns, but Hubbelrath East took a leap from 25 to 16 and two courses from the Gems category were promoted: Hamburger Hittfeld enters at 24 and Stuttgarter Solitude at 27.
As always, we are grateful for any reviews of courses you have played, they are often more helpful to our readers than a purely numerical chart can ever be. We do not want our rankings to end all discussions, but rather to facilitate them. A heightened awareness of what separates standard fare from greatness does go a long way towards “getting it right” in the future.
Click the link to see the latest German Top 30 in detail.
08 January 2014 Respond to this article