One of the Cape’s most esteemed courses, Steenberg is a Peter Matkovic-designed beauty. It offers playability for the higher handicappers and a challenge off the back tees for those more skilled. The greens are complex and require flawless lines and good technique to score well but before that there is a long way to go into getting onto the putting surface.
As part of the estate that features fine dining and wine tasting experiences, the course is looked down upon by the Stone Mountain range and is played between numerous vineyards and water features.
Like many Cape Town courses, wind may just be the factor between a personal best and a difficult round but the immaculate views put golf into perspective.
The par 3 seventh is easily the standout hole on the opening loop as the short hole slightly downhill to a green protected by bunkers and water left and at the back.
The inward nine starts off with some scoring holes provided you are laser-like with your tee shot. Anything else and birdies will quickly turn into bogeys. The 11th is a drivable par four but only for those not worried about water down the left and bunkers to the right before the dogleg par 5 12th offers a good chance of birdie. Once again, you must successfully navigate the tee shot which demands a long, draw while your iron approach must leave you on the correct level of the three-tiered green.
The 17th hole is another picture perfect par 3 which places its emphasis on club selection such is the gradient change. The closing hole, which is watched by the verandah and crowds already finished, is a three-shot par 5 for most with water again in play; this time cutting off the fairway after your tee shot and sitting in wait to the right of the putting surface.
As with all Matkovic designs, the greens are complex and offer few easy “up and downs” if you are wayward off the tee. Those problems, however, vanish as you enjoy your afternoon in the sun at the 19th.
The course is relatively flat, so abandon the cart and take a walk. Better yet, employ one of the club’s expert caddies to guide you around especially on the greens.
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