As a golfing destination, South Africa is still a relatively well-kept secret, but there is no reason why that should be so. Combine incredible landscapes, a wonderful climate and spectacular courses, some of them designed by the legendary Gary Player, with – specific to the Western Cape – easy access via Cape Town, one of the world’s top wine producing regions and the gourmet capital of the country, Franschhoek, and you have the recipe for a great sporting break.
Leeu Collection (www.leeucollection.com) has three properties in the Franschhoek Valley, just an hour from Cape Town’s international airport, that provide the perfect base for a golf holiday, particularly now they have launched a three-night package that includes complimentary transfers to and from the golf course on two days plus a three-course dinner at one of the group’s restaurants on one night (excluding the restaurants at Le Quartier Francais).
Golfers can simply book into any of Leeu Collection’s properties for three nights to secure the above benefits. The three Leeu hotels in Franschhoek are Leeu Estates (a 17-room country house and boutique winery in the Franschhoek valley), Leeu House (an exclusive 12-room hotel in the heart of Franschhoek village) or Le Quartier Français, an iconic 32-room property with two independent villas (should guests be travelling in a group and wish to stay together). Nightly room rates start from South African R8,750 at Leeu Estates, R7,150 at Leeu House and R7,750 at Le Quartier Francais, all based on two people sharing a double room on a B&B basis and including the tourism levy of R50.
Then all golfing guests have to do is choose from the six stunning courses with which Leeu has links – details below – and all the other arrangements will be taken care of by the hotel concierge (while transfers are complimentary, green fees must be paid directly to the golf club).
Pearl Valley Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course (www.pearlvalley.co.za) – this Jack Nicklaus Signature course has consistently ranked among the best courses in South Africa since 2006; a visually pleasing course, it was inaugurated in 2003, with a match between Nicklaus and Gary Player. Green fees from R895.00 per person, including golf cart.
Erinvale (https://erinvale.co.za/), which opened in 1995 and made an impact internationally the following year when it hosted the 1996 World Cup of Golf, won by Ernie Els and Wayne Westner for the home nation. Designed by the legendary Gary Player, it hosted the South African Open in 2003 and 2004. Green fees from R570.00 per person.
De Zalze (http://dezalzegolf.com/) co-hosted the World Amateur Team Championships in 2006 alongside Stellenbosch; located in the shadows of the Helderberg Mountains, the oak-lined Blaauwklippen River that runs through this charming parkland course adds a degree of danger. Green fees from R690.00 per person.
Stellenbosch Golf Club (www.stellenboschgolfclub.com) – one of the oldest golf clubs in South Africa, celebrating its centenary in 2004, it has hosted some of the country’s most prestigious professional and amateur events, including the World Amateur Team Championships in 2006. Green fees from R350.00 per person.
Devonvale (http://www.devonvale.co.za/), a world class championship course located just five miles outside Stellenbosch. Green fees from R300.00 per person.
Boschenmeer Golf Estate (www.boschenmeergolf.co.za), the Western Cape’s first 27-hole golf club, where the majority of the holes are marked by intimidating water hazards that make for a challenging round of golf. Green fees from R685.00 per person.
After a morning on the fairways, golfers can head to a wide number of wineries in and around Stellenbosch and Franschhoek to taste a range of wines or head into Cape Town to take the cable car up to Table Mountain or explore the cultural centre at the Victoria and Albert Waterfront. Better still, visit during the South African winter (now till October) and a golfing break can be twinned with a safari for the holiday of lifetime!
Leeu Collection’s golf package is available until April 2020 (with blackout dates from 20 December 2019 to 29 February 2020 inclusive) using the booking code “Leeu Golf”.