Hartbeespoort Dam - North West Province

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General manager: Morne Botha
Golf operations manager: Kevin Wylie
Greenkeeper: Dean van Staden
Club captain: John Rogers
Ladies captain: Rina-Marie Jacobs
Chairman: Mogomotsi Motsielwa

Course Summary

Four tees / Par 72

Green 7040 metres, CR75.9/139
White 6401 metres, CR72.4/131
Blue 5698 metres, CR68.6/129
Red 5261 metres, CR66.3/124
Women’s blue, CR75.9/146
Women’s red, CR73.3/140

Visitor green fee

Weekday R470; weekend R520
Tuesday & Thursday AM special R195

Course designer

Jack Nicklaus 1998


012 244 8000

Pecanwood was the first Jack Nicklaus Signature design in Africa when it opened for play in August 1998 as part of a golf estate on the shores of Hartbeespoort Dam, with a magnificent backdrop of the Magaliesberg mountain range. Over the next decade Nicklaus would return time and again to design another five courses in South Africa. Pecanwood ushered in a new era of five-star course design.

Nicklaus delivered a championship-quality layout at Pecanwood that at the time was the longest course in the country, 60 metres longer than the Gary Player CC at Sun City, with a rating of 76 from the back tees. It was the first course in South Africa to make maximum use of fairway bunkering as serious hazards. There is 4.5 hectares of sand. Providing contrast and definition, the bunkers are placed in strategic positions on every hole, so straight driving is a premier requirement.

Although working with a flat piece of land, Nicklaus and his shaper created something unique as 1.5 million cubic metres of earth was excavated. Golf Data began constructing the course in 1995, the first of several joint projects with Nicklaus. This earth was used to construct the peninsulas on the estate.

Pecanwood was originally on farmland and the waterfront property was discovered in 1993 by Rodney Clare, owner of a small real estate development company. Visiting the area to purchase a weekend home, he was told that the price of the vacant tomato farm next door was the same as the asking price of a home at Eagle’s Landing. Clare bought the land and developed both Pecanwood and Key West estate. A Malaysian development company, Country Heights, was the construction partner at Pecanwood. Country Heights became sole owners in 2002.

Additional Course Facts

Course Record

61 by Paul Shields (Scotland) in the 2012 Gauteng North Open

Feature Holes

These come on the back nine, where the course gets closest to the Hartbeespoort Dam shoreline. The par-3 13th, one of four outstanding short holes, is on the edge of the water. The next two par 4s, 14 and 15, are special, as they encircle a large inner water hazard. The Nicklaus greens are a feature of the course, beautifully shaped and without the extreme slopes which distinguish some of his later designs.

Practice Facility

Outstanding range, both long and wide, in front of the double-storey clubhouse. There are tees at both ends.


There are seven guest houses within the estate.

Club Champions

Luc Gavagnin & Linda Jordaan

Did You Know

1/ Pecanwood derives its name from a stand of large pecan trees between the fifth and seventh holes. The architectural design was modelled on an American gated development, PGA West in Palm Springs, California. The original building plans were modified to total 880 houses; the number of golf members set at 888; both lucky numbers according to Malaysian beliefs.

2/ Golf carts are primarily used by golfers, yet Pecanwood is not a difficult walk, and the course has been regularly used for big amateur tournaments.

3/ Scot Paul Shields played the front nine at Pecanwood in 28 on his way to a course record 61 at the 2012 Gauteng North Open. He failed to win the tournament.

4/ There was also low scoring in the 2018 SA Strokeplay Championship at Pecanwood, with the winner Oliver Gillberg (Sweden) setting a new 72-hole tournament record of 27-under 261 (67-62-64-68). He had 28 birdies and two eagles.

5/ The new men’s club champion is 14-year-old Luc Gavagnin, and the 2018 champion was his classmate at Pecanwood College, 13-year-old Rorisang Nkosi.

6/ Water sports are popular, and Pecanwood has a Boat Club facing on to a marina.

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Course Reviews

This course would be much busier if it was closer to the city. A magnificent setting with some world-class holes to challenge players of all abilities.

Sandor Kovacs
16 April 2020
I love playing at Pecanwood, and it's good to see the improvements in the clubhouse and around the course. The pro shop is now upstairs at the entrance which is so much better. I was shocked to see a temporary green at No 17, the par 3. The green was poisoned, and will be out of action for a while. The bunkers round the green are being rebuilt.
Thomas Souness
24 March 2020
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Pecanwood has an excellent Jack Nicklaus layout that remains as challenging as ever. The greens are relatively small, the bunkers deep and plentiful, and it can play long. The greens currently are patchy and soft and not what you would expect, but the course has had many different greenkeepers in recent times. The new man is Dean van Staden, who was an excellent golfer (runner-up in 1985 SA Amateur) and pro caddie (on the bag with Hennie Otto in his 2012 SA Open win).
Stuart McLean
24 March 2020

A friendly course that can test all golfers. Bunkers need work and is a project in the process of being implemented. The staff, under GM Morne Botha, are doing a fantastic job of promoting the club and golf.

Jack Bennie
16 March 2020
Pecanwood has probably the best tees in South Africa. Fairways are excellent. Bunkers disappointing, but greens true, although slightly slow if compared with other courses at this level. Overall a positive experience!
Pierre Swart
11 March 2020
Fairways in phenomenal condition, great value for money.
Michael Nash
11 March 2020
Condition is excellent. Greens looking better than ever and roll very true.
Mark Eveleigh
11 March 2020
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