Perhaps it is because during the winter season it turns into a ski slope, or perhaps it is because the greens don't spare even the best putters, but the fact is that getting a good score is a very hard task. Playing it, however, is really worth it.
Konopiste Resort is located in the heart of Central Bohemia, about an hour's drive from Prague Airport (Czech Republic. This is where the two courses of Golf Club & Resort Konopiste are located: the Radecky course and the D'Este course.
Very well-maintained fairways and greens. Compact bunker sand and tee boxes are also in excellent condition. For the less experienced, the use of a golf cart is certainly recommended, given the great difference in altitude on both courses.
The 18-hole, par 72 course measures 6,484 metres (measured from the black tees of the professionals) and was designed by Frantisek Stepàn with the help of John Burns. It opened in 2002 and is the resort's first course. On the tee of the first hole, golfers get a sense of the type of course they're about to face. The tee shot is uphill with plenty of trees left and right. The uphill tee shots return very often during the round and make the course longer than it appears from looking at the yardage book.
But on the second shot, the fairway dips down with a slope of about 20 metres. One of the characteristics of the course is in fact that several holes are continuously up and down, which makes the course very challenging and often leaves players with blind shots. Time to leave holes 2 and 3 (two fairly easy par 4s) behind and time to enter the woods.
Holes 4, 5 and 6 are the three most beautiful holes on the course in my opinion. Hole 4 is a very short par 5 (400 metres), but with water on the left and out of bounds on the right, driver might not be your safest choice here. Hole 5 is not long, but the elevated tee makes for a picture-perfect first shot. Hole 6 is iconic: a medium-length par 3 where you have to fly the lake.
After the first 9 very technical, short and narrow holes, the second 9, wider but also longer holes begin. This is where those who drive hard can have some fun... but stay friends with the fairway! The hard and often wet rough leaves no way out and those who miss the fairway are always forced to lay up putting the ball back into play. Really exciting is hole 18, which is entirely downhill and where you need to clear a water hazard before reaching the green.
A special mention for the greens: large and difficult. Many greens in regulation is not synonymous with a good score. The large slopes make putting difficult from both near and far... birdies will not be abundant.
The resort's second course is less sparkling but still enjoyable to play. The D'Este course is also a par 72 but slightly shorter, measuring just over 6,000 metres from the black tees. Here too, it starts with two straight uphill holes, before entering a part of the course with several entertaining doglegs. Long drivers can benefit by cutting the trees, as long as they know which line to take.
The front nine ends with a distinctive par 4: the first shot is downhill after which you have an approach to an island green, defended by water on all sides. The back nine of this course alternates uphill and downhill shots, finishing with the 18th which has the author's signature all over it: your tee shot needs to be placed on the fairway, then play a delicate second shot with a large downhill slope, and end at a green defended by a water obstacle on the right.
Golf Resort Konipiste is definitely worth a visit if your visiting the Central Bohemian Region.
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