Somerset West Country Club, founded as Paardevlei Golf Club way back in 1908, was originally a 9-hole course. And according to a newspaper story at the time, it must have been tough to play: 'Bogey [par] is 39 and that figure is practically impossible to achieve,' reported The Cape Argus of 29 August 1914. Today Somerset West Country Club is much changed, and the re-located 18-hole course is considered one of the more forgiving in the Western Cape.
There are a few testing holes but Ian Martin, a genial Scot and resident professional at the club, reckons Somerset West is one place where the average golfer can expect to play two or three shots under his handicap. 'There's no rough to speak of and I believe our greens are the best in the Western Cape. You can pick a line and feel confident that that's where the putt will go,' says Martin. He considers the 7th, 9th and 14th to be outstanding holes.
Having singled out these three holes, which are all fairly demanding, the rest of the course is not that difficult. As I've said, Somerset West offers a good opportunity to play under your handicap, and who can refuse an offer like that? So I encourage visitors to join us.' Somerset West is one of the few traditional country clubs still in existence with facilities for tennis, squash and bowls as well as golf. The town of Somerset West is a very popular residential area, which is due in no small measure to its exquisitely beautiful setting - it faces False Bay and has as its backdrop the majestic Helderberg Mountains.
|Somerset West Country Club|
|18 holes, par-73, rating 71, 5 928 metres.
It has kikuyu fairways and bent grass greens with water hazards on four holes and bunkers on most holes. It is a flat, parkland course.|
|Rates and fees are available on request|
|Coming from the direction of Cape Town, turn left off the N2 for Somerset West. Turn right at the Lord Charles Hotel to reach Somerset West. Simply follow the signs to the club.|
|A handicap certificate and golf union membership card are required if playing in a competition.|
|Facilities and Activities|
|Facilities||Professional; driving range; practice tee; a clubhouse which serves light snacks and has a dining room.|
|Activities||Tennis, squash and bowls|