Luttrellstown Castle XXXX Luttrellstown Castle Luttrellstown Castle has the advantage of routing its golf course over a vast 567 acre estate, right on the edge of Dublin city. Big, lazy and expansive, it takes in the River Liffey, as well as sentinel-like mature trees which have been employed to shepherd holes and create impressive backdrops… although the castle at the far end of the course may prove most dramatic of all. There are no climbs, but the undulations ensure a flowing rhythm to your round while the trees add scale and drama. It is a surprisingly open course, with 11 holes featuring water, but it is long. At close to 6,800 yards from the middle tees, you will want to open your shoulders. Stunning clubhouse and facilities. Portmarnock A links of low, sweet dunes and sensational strategy. Portmarnock, just north of Dublin city, is revered the world over and with good r eason. Apart from the 5th, the holes are always on show from the tee and this can lull you into a false sense of security. It’s as if you can see the whole painting, but not the detail… and that detail is so vitally important. Holes are so subtle and green complexes so intricate that smart positioning off the tee is crucial. Only then can you attack pins on perfect putting surfaces. Employ your bump-and- run skills as best you can: this is a course where such skills will be rewarded. Established in 1894 the fabric of the course has changed little, while the 14th and 15th are two of the most admired and feared holes in Ireland. Hermitage Despite being located beside the busy N4, Hermitage Golf Club remains an oasis of calm. Boasting a distinguished 116 year history this is classic, mature parkland weaving through dense corridors of trees. It also promises a heavily undulating landscape as it rolls and tumbles down to the River Liffey. The biggest change in elevation is revealed by a walk alongside the clubhouse: the par three 10th is one of the best and most tempting holes around, dropping sharply from the clubhouse to a green in front of the River Liffey. This is also the start of the best run of holes as you drift inland and find an isolation which belies the club’s suburban setting. Hermitage is also highly regarded for the quality of its greens and they prove to be attractive targets the whole way around. 68 Low, subtle and often narrow fairways lead into exceptional greens… but be warned: the deep bunkers may prove your undoing.