The Takeaway: Top 3 course in England's heathlands. Completely engaging from the 1st tee to the 18th green with superb terrain, excellent bunkering, and impressive visuals. Proves that not all of the best courses in the UK sit on the sea. Grade A
Designer: Harry S. Colt 1912
Cost: £150 - £250 Click for current rates
Phone Number: +44 1932 847758
Course Website: Official Website - Visit St. Georges Hill (Red & Blue)'s official website by clicking on the link provided.
Directions: Get here! - Golf Club Rd, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 0NL – UNITED KINGDOM
What to Expect: While Sunningdale and Swinley Forest own much of the hype in the heathland area outside of London, St. George's Hill more than belongs in the conversation as one of England’s best and is a superb layout in every sense of the word. Harry Colt has few peers in his ability to design a course that maximizes the terrain in a way that delivers such an impressive variety of shot shapes and types. The wide fairways deliver confidence off the tee while the masterful bunkering and greens keep your attention from the first drive to the final putt. St. George's Hill enjoys more undulated ground than most of the heathland courses and features tree lined fairways that frame each hole for some seclusion without ever closing things off to a claustrophobic level. The par 3s and 4s are fantastic, but the 5s are a bit weak in comparison. From a conditioning perspective, St. George's Hill has few rivals in England and the rough is a nice combination of being penal without instantly being a lost ball. As is common with most courses in the UK, players will be required to walk but can rent a trolley to help tote their clubs around. With an additional nine holes at the club, St. George’s Hill is an elite level 27 hole facility and a brilliant combination of fun, challenge, and intrigue.
By the Numbers
Individual Hole Analysis
Signature Hole: 10th Hole – 434 Yard Par 4 – The opening hole on the back nine is an exciting Alps offering with a blind tee shot down to a fairway that turns late to the left and up to the greensite. Big tee shots down the left side may find the bunker 300+ yards away down that side, but most tee shots will come up short and have an approach shot that is partially blocked by the raised bunkers well short of the green. Players are rewarded with a relatively tame green to navigate after defeating the visual and terrain challenges up to that point. With the tee shot playing in the shadows of the looming clubhouse and a collection of fellow golfers in the area, this is one tee shot you want to stand up to and rip.
Best Par 3: 8th Hole – 179 Yards – One of the more acclaimed one-shotters in the Greater London area, the 8th at St. George's Hill plays downhill to a greensite that stares back with more trouble than safety to hit to. Four bunkers pepper the terrain and while the domed green is quick to reject shots that hug too tight to the edges. The chipping bowl short and right of the putting surface is only an effective place to bail out to when the flag is in the back third of the green. This is an exacting hole which is magnified by the elevation drop, so take dead aim at the center of the green and see what you can make happen.
Best Par 4: 2nd Hole – 458 Yards – The downhill 2nd hole wastes no time introducing players to the undulated terrain and challenging bunkers the course is known for. The tee shot should be played to the right of the greenside bunker that can be seen in the distance as that will allow extra space for tee balls to tumble with the terrain to the left. 100 yards short of the green a creek cuts across the fairway at the low point of the hole, which shouldn't come into play, except for the fact that you'll be faced with a downhill lie that is easy to hit thin and go sending along the ground. The approach shot features a false bunker 50 yards short of the green and a deep bunker flanking the left side of the putting surface. From a downhill lie it can create a challenging scenario to get the ball to hit and hold the green like you want, so landing just short and skipping the ball up is ideal.
Best Par 5: 15th Hole – 547 Yards – One of two par fives on the course, the 15th plays downhill to a fairway that features four bunkers on each side of the hole. The sand gets closer together in both length and width as players traverse to the green, but if you can keep your ball down the middle you'll thread right through them to a welcoming green. The green runs from front right to back left, so favor the right side when approaching the flag.
Birdie Time: 4th Hole – 272 Yard Par 4 – An absolute stellar hole that should stand as an example of how good a driveable par four can be. Playing downhill and reachable for many golfers, the 4th begs players to take a rip at the green and see if something special can happen. 'V' shaped bunkering frames the front of the green to catch tee balls coming up wanting, but the space beyond the low point of the 'V' is a perfect spot to try and land your ball before it trundles onto the putting surface. The green slopes away to the back right, so tee shots that miss to the right can use the slope to nestle the ball close while tee shots to the left better hope the flag is on the right side for any chance of getting it close. Birdies, eagles, bogies; anything can happen here!
Bogey Beware: 13th Hole – 427 Yard Par 4 – The consensus favorite hole of each staff member we talked with, the 13th is also St. George's toughest. Shot making comes at a premium as players are faced with a fairway that turns to the left but terrain that slopes to the right, so the ideal line is over the fairway bunker on the left. The right half of the driving zone is blind from the tee due to a hill that rises up between the bunkers, but balls that skirt too far that way will be blocked out by the tree line on the approach shot. So you basically need to hit a perfect drive before hitting your approach shot to the green that is protected by three bunkers that stand ready to catch balls that don't come in high and soft or from the front left side. It is a stout test and walking away with a par is an accomplishment to be proud of.