Valderrama Golf Club

Real Golf de Pedrena

Spain, North Spain, Pedrena
5.8 (6)
Designer: Harry S. Colt
Course Opened: 1928

The Real Golf de Pedrena course overlooks the charming seaside town of Santander and is famous in golfing circles as the place where a young Severiano Ballesteros first learned the game. The golf course is also significant, for it was created by British legend Harry Colt and is noted for an impressive group of par threes and Colt's effective use of the rolling terrain.

The Colt routing is still rock solid here, but the bunkers and greens have clearly deteriorated since foundation, and have either been altered since the originals were built or slowly changed shape over the years. The bunkers are mostly placed to the sides of fairways and greens, one exception being the cross traps used down the middle of the driving zone on the 6th hole. Aside from the par threes, the cross-ridge and then over gorge 8th hole is the real standout, the par four similar in some sense to the 8th at pebble Beach but without the views. As mentioned the short holes are very good, the long 15th is an outstanding three that is beautifully built to accept only the most perfect chasing approach shots.

Over the years the trees have grown at Pedrena, the course now quite tight with either trees or long rough flanking fairways and the greens typically built-up and with one side definitely out of play because of steep fall offs or deep bunkers.There is also an alternate nine here that is too steep for sensible play but closer to the sea and blessed with the best views on site.

Pedrena is well worth a visit, if only to see where a young Spanish genius learned his craft and developed his magical short game.


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