Review by detroitgolfer of New Zealand Golf Club

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General impression8.0
New Zealand Golf Club New Zealand Artisans Golf Club7.5
Course maintenance7.5
Clubhouse8.5
Hospitality8.0
Surroundings7.0
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7.7
About the review
Written on: 23 May 2022Played on: 23 May 2022Handicap while playing: 14.7
detroitgolfer review

Despite the many elements which combine to make the course better than its sum parts, it is the bunkering which is New Zealand’s standout feature. It has long been my belief that Walton Heath’s bunkers are the best in the heathlands. According to Patric Dickinson “They are curiously, aggressively, artificial looking. ” While not nearly as austere as Walton’s Heath’s pits, one could say that New Zealand’s are alarmingly charming, but just as effective and thus the equal of Fowler’s maiden design. Because both courses are fairly flat the bunkers take on a more prominent strategic role and may explain why the architects seemed to take great care in creating thoughtful hazards which in the best of traditions guard rather than frame greens. There is a fair amount of wonderful architecture that is more often than not dismissed as “flat” and therefore uninteresting. This sort of attitude will lead golfers to miss out on one of the true gems of London. Much of New Zealand is the product of Mure Fergusson’s 1895 design which was unique for its day in that it was carved out of a forest. Fergusson continued to make refinements over the following 30 years as secretary of the club. Not long after his death Tom Simpson was called in to make significant changes. Being a former partner of Herbert Fowler and a member of Woking gave Simpson first hand knowledge of good design principles. Among the alterations were the addition of the great green complexes for #s 17 & 18, the short 3rd hole and a grand bunkering scheme for the entire course. Consequently its fair to state that New Zealand is the product of both these gentlemen. The clubhouse has bags of charm and the course is demandingly honest, but some readers may be curious about the vital statistics; a par of 68 and a breath under 6000 yards. These numbers will strike many as a bit on the light side, however, don’t be deceived. The story of New Zealand is discovered in its playing and there are three All England candidates; #s 6,7 & 16. There is a premium placed on hitting fairways and with six holes which can take some reaching this aspect of the game is greatly rewarded in keen conditions. Additionally, there are two long par 3s, consequently, New Zealand offers plenty of challenge with medium to long irons and wood play. This sort of configuration is a wonderful example of how to combat flat bellies yet offer respite for the less gifted players. Despite not being blessed with a rolling property, New Zealand drains exceedingly well. The flatter landscape offers a pleasantly cunning game with its many small and large swales kicking poorly judged shots into awkward recovery situations. Bernard Darwin encapsules the qualities of the club and course like no other can; “New Zealand is sui generis. It does not compete with other courses, but it sets its own standard and lives up to it. ”.

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Helpful?
detroitgolfer
detroitgolfer
4395 points
Silver
713 / 133,109
worldwide
5 / 4,732
United Kingdom
Total number of reviews:
34
Average review score:
7.6
Total number of photos added:
132
Handicap:
14.7
Member since:
8 April 2022
Home course :
7.7
About the review
Written on: 23 May 2022Played on: 23 May 2022Handicap while playing: 14.7
General impression8.0
New Zealand Golf Club New Zealand Artisans Golf Club7.5
Course maintenance7.5
Clubhouse8.5
Hospitality8.0
Surroundings7.0
detroitgolfer review

Despite the many elements which combine to make the course better than its sum parts, it is the bunkering which is New Zealand’s standout feature. It has long been my belief that Walton Heath’s bunkers are the best in the heathlands. According to Patric Dickinson “They are curiously, aggressively, artificial looking. ” While not nearly as austere as Walton’s Heath’s pits, one could say that New Zealand’s are alarmingly charming, but just as effective and thus the equal of Fowler’s maiden design. Because both courses are fairly flat the bunkers take on a more prominent strategic role and may explain why the architects seemed to take great care in creating thoughtful hazards which in the best of traditions guard rather than frame greens. There is a fair amount of wonderful architecture that is more often than not dismissed as “flat” and therefore uninteresting. This sort of attitude will lead golfers to miss out on one of the true gems of London. Much of New Zealand is the product of Mure Fergusson’s 1895 design which was unique for its day in that it was carved out of a forest. Fergusson continued to make refinements over the following 30 years as secretary of the club. Not long after his death Tom Simpson was called in to make significant changes. Being a former partner of Herbert Fowler and a member of Woking gave Simpson first hand knowledge of good design principles. Among the alterations were the addition of the great green complexes for #s 17 & 18, the short 3rd hole and a grand bunkering scheme for the entire course. Consequently its fair to state that New Zealand is the product of both these gentlemen. The clubhouse has bags of charm and the course is demandingly honest, but some readers may be curious about the vital statistics; a par of 68 and a breath under 6000 yards. These numbers will strike many as a bit on the light side, however, don’t be deceived. The story of New Zealand is discovered in its playing and there are three All England candidates; #s 6,7 & 16. There is a premium placed on hitting fairways and with six holes which can take some reaching this aspect of the game is greatly rewarded in keen conditions. Additionally, there are two long par 3s, consequently, New Zealand offers plenty of challenge with medium to long irons and wood play. This sort of configuration is a wonderful example of how to combat flat bellies yet offer respite for the less gifted players. Despite not being blessed with a rolling property, New Zealand drains exceedingly well. The flatter landscape offers a pleasantly cunning game with its many small and large swales kicking poorly judged shots into awkward recovery situations. Bernard Darwin encapsules the qualities of the club and course like no other can; “New Zealand is sui generis. It does not compete with other courses, but it sets its own standard and lives up to it. ”.

clubs_1
clubs_1
clubs_1
clubs_1
1
Helpful?
detroitgolfer
detroitgolfer
4395 points
Silver
713 / 133,109
worldwide
5 / 4,732
United Kingdom
Total number of reviews:
34
Average review score:
7.6
Total number of photos added:
132
Handicap:
14.7
Member since:
8 April 2022
Home course :
Ready to rate your golf experience?
Rating your experience helps golfers make the right choice and assists clubs to improve their services. Need more incentive? Reviews are added to your personal golf logbook and you even have the chance to win great prizes!
write a review
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