Destination Golf Ireland 2019 * - Page 73

Castle Beech Park This very pretty course lies to the south of the N7. Such is the density of deciduous trees that Beech Park is more woodland than parkland. On the more open front nine trees still shadow you every step of the way. On the back nine the trees close in. Combined with the water features it makes Beech Park a charming round of golf. It is short for a par 72 but the trees add scale and give holes individuality. This is particularly apparent on the club’s ‘Amen Corner’, where the par five 13th doglegs non-stop around a lake. 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. Rathfarnham The newest member of Ireland’s 18-hole club, Rathfarnham combines a variety of holes thanks to its 116 year evolution, and a jump from 9 to 14 to 15 to 18 holes. There are dense evergreen corridors and open hillsides, sweet ponds and lazy doglegs. Despite these differences this short course has a highly enjoyable rhythm – one where a driver is more of a hindrance than a help. Six new holes opened in 2015 (three new, three upgraded), and water plays a bigger part than ever in the middle of the round with a number of holes clinging tightly to the ponds. Picking your favourite hole will prove quite a challenge. Enjoy the views from the top of the course. Castle One of Dublin’s premier parklands, Castle Golf Club is tucked away in quiet Rathfarnham suburbia. It has a lovely rhythm over flattish terrain, which is no doubt a testament to the work of the famous golf architect, Harry Colt. Corridors of evergreens give a dark air to the course and certainly they can make for tight driving, with holes curling left or right. It will only take a few holes to realise that while Castle is a short par 72, it will make a fool of you if you don’t find the fairways. A class course from start to finish. 71