We were very fortunate to play on two such splendid courses,
The Sapphire and The Emerald, at
the Macdonald Hill Valley Hotel, Golf & Country
The layout of both courses was excellent. The Sapphire, a
shorter and narrower course, proved an excellent test of accuracy, with the
greens and fairways in very good condition.
The Emerald, a longer, tougher and in places more forgiving
course, pushed our golfing ability. The condition of the fairways was very good
but the greens weren’t quite as good as the Sapphire course. The bunkers were
in good nick as well and were tricky traps on some occasions.
Both courses were suited for different abilities. I consider
myself an OK golfer whose handicap used to be 12, but haven't played
consistently for about ten years, and I thoroughly enjoyed playing both
courses, considering them both a decent challenge. My golfing partner only
began playing golf consistently over the past two years and he thought the
course was a good challenge for him too.
The clubhouse was welcoming, with comfy chairs, sky
sports and a laid back atmosphere. We enjoyed a sandwich before our evening
meal which was delicious. The barman looked after us all very well but the
price of a pint and a bottle of beer was expensive.
The hotel was very welcoming too with good cleanliness and
everything you needed. We didn't use the spa facilities but as we walked passed
them they looked very tempting. The restaurant was very nice, the food tasted
great and there was enough choice on the menu. The room was spacious, clean
with a lovely shower!
The staff were welcoming and caring for our needs and created
a good impression on me; very chatty which made you feel at ease with
My overall verdict for the weekend was: Experience 10/10,
Courses 9/10, Hotel 9/10.