Designed by British architect Donald Harradine in 1966, Opio Valbonne is one of the oldest golf courses in the south of France, and one of the best. This 6,300-yard 18-hole course is no monster, but it doesn't need to be. It is situated on natural parkland, in the heart of the Côte d'Azur, and has the advantage of an exceptional climate and being well-sheltered from the winds. It is heavily tree-lined at times, demanding well-placed and accurate shots, especially over the front nine.
The short 11th is one of the many highlights. At 180 yards from the back tees, hitting the relatively small and elevated putting surface is a real challenge, while any shots to the right can find water - although a 12-foot stone wall separates the hazard from the green.
The course undulates pleasantly and changes character as the round progresses. In general, the front nine requires careful approach play while back nine calls for longer, straight tee shots. Water hazards come into play over the front nine, and there are relatively few bunkers, but sand traps become more of a threat towards the finale of the round.
|Opened for play
Once you've enjoyed this little masterpiece, you can indulge in range of amenities the club offers, including the restaurant and terrace, swimming pool and tennis courts. Golfing facilities include putting greens, practice bunker, driving range, electric buggies and trolleys.