Southern Highlands Golf Club

Las Vegas, Nevada

Royal Antwerp Golf Club (Kapellen, Belgium)

Royal Antwerp Golf Club logo Golf Course Review by: Billy Satterfield

Rankings: 

   

The Takeaway:  While Royal Antwerp is often considered Belgium's top track, that is more of a condemning statement about the quality of golf in the land of chocolate and waffles than it is a compliment to Royal Antwerp. The course offers a nice walk in a peaceful setting, but lacks the terrain and architecture to be compelling.  Grade C-

Quick Facts

Designer:  Tom Simpson 1930

Cost:  €35 - €155 Click for current rates

Phone Number:  +32 (0) 3 666 84 56

Course Website:  Official Website - Visit Royal Antwerp Golf Club's official website by clicking on the link provided.

Directions:  Get here! - Torenlei 1A, Kapellen, Belgium  2950 – BELGIUM

Photos:  See additional photos of Royal Antwerp Golf Club

What to Expect:  A Tom Simpson layout that was originally a Willie Park Jr., Royal Antwerp lays claim as Belgium's oldest club. The golf course is found on dead flat ground with thick forest on each side of the fairways which adds plenty of maturity but often takes away from some of the playing angles and potential enjoyment. While I understand that there has been some thinning out of trees over the past handful of years, there is still more work to be done in order to expose Simpson's intended design features. The heavy amount of trees certainly give a feeling of isolation on each hole, but it also gives a monotonous look, feel, and strategy to the course as the trees and fairway bunkers pinch the playing areas to claustrophobic levels. Royal Antwerp is a nice walk in a peaceful setting, but lacks the terrain and design intrigue to be great.

By the Numbers

Tees Par Yardage Rating Slope
Black 73 6811 73.0 129
White (62) 73 6741 72.7 129
Yellow (58) 73 6342 71.0 124
Blue (54) 73 5896 69.0 120
Red (50) (Ladies) 73 5521 72.2 125

Individual Hole Analysis

Signature Hole:  1st Hole – 328 Yard Par 4 – The opener at Royal Antwerp is a quick introduction of what to expect while teeing it up on this classic Belgian track. Trees line each side of the fairway tight enough that hitting driver off the tee may not be the optimal choice; especially considering the short distance of the hole. The challenge here is around the green where raised bunkers obscure some of the view of the putting surface and can create some challenging up and down scenarios.

1st Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (328 Yard Par 4)
1st Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (328 Yard Par 4)

1st Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (328 Yard Par 4)
1st Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (328 Yard Par 4)

Best Par 3:  16th Hole – 149 Yards – A straight forward par three that plays over flat terrain to a green surrounded by bunkers, the 16th is all about avoiding the sand. The putting surface is slightly raised and the surrounding trees cast heavy shadows across the green to create a visual deception for the golfer to contend with.

16th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (149 Yard Par 3)
16th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (149 Yard Par 3)

Best Par 4:  13th Hole – 396 Yards – A shot-shapers hole, the 13th doglegs left through the trees where 3-wood may be the best choice off the tee to ensure a clean look at the green as the fairway tightens at the bend. As is the theme at Royal Antwerp, the green is surrounded by sand as Tom Simpson requires players to be on their game with their approach shots.

13th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (396 Yard Par 4)
13th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (396 Yard Par 4)

Best Par 5:  11th Hole – 492 Yards – The 11th at Royal Antwerp has perhaps the most interesting routing of all the holes on the course with a double dogleg feature. The tee shot is fairly inviting and affords the width to play a cut with your driver that follows the bend in the fairway. The approach shot calls of the opposite shape with the green angling from front right to back left while four bunkers come into play at various distances from the putting surface. The shaping and variety of bunker sizes and placement make the 11th as memorable as Royal Antwerp offers.

11th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (492 Yard Par 5)
11th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (492 Yard Par 5)

11th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (492 Yard Par 5)
11th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (492 Yard Par 5)

Birdie Time:  15th Hole – 489 Yard Par 5 – The 15th measures less than 500 yards and plays straight away, so there is little to be concerned with while playing this hole other than to get done in four shots. The inviting tee shot begs players to swing away and put themselves in position to make an aggressive second shot at the green. While some bunkering comes into play, the green is tame enough that getting close to the hole on a third shot, whether a putt or short chip, if plenty doable with a birdie awaiting those that execute properly.

15th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (489 Yard Par 5)
15th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (489 Yard Par 5)

15th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (489 Yard Par 5)
15th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (489 Yard Par 5)

Bogey Beware:  6th Hole – 419 Yard Par 4 – The early dogleg in the 6th fairway paired with how tight the trees pinch the bend create a scenario where it’s difficult to cheat any distance off the hole and find a good position with a tee shot. The safe play to the corner leaves a long shot into the green with few players finding it in regulation. This isn’t a hole to try and over power as shots that stray off line can get swatted by the trees and bring a big number into play.

6th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (419 Yard Par 4)
6th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (419 Yard Par 4)

6th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (419 Yard Par 4)
6th Hole at Royal Antwerp Golf Club (419 Yard Par 4)

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