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Prince’s Grant

Near Stanger, KZN North Coast - KwaZulu-Natal

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General manager: Bruce Hurley
Golf manager: Matt Sutherland
Greenkeeper: Igor Duvel (STM)
Club captains: Brian Kelley & Moya Evans
President: Mike Kieser
CRITERIA SUMMARY: Total points 73.8 out of 100
Conditioning13.3 / 20
Playability15.1 / 20
Aesthetics13.1 / 15
Design Variety11.3 / 15
Shot Values10.1 / 15
Memorability10.9 / 15

Course Summary

Four tees / Par 72

Yellow 6158 metres, CR74.1/141
White 5767 metres, CR71.9/140
Blue 5331 metres, CR70.0/134
Red 4885 metres, CR67.4/123
Women’s white, CR78.4/142
Women’s blue, CR75.5/136
Women’s red, CR72.8/129

Visitor green fee

R450, golf cart R340
Fourball specials on Monday,
Tuesday & Thursday

Course designer

Peter Matkovich 1994

Contact

032 482 0041
www.princesgrant.co.za

Previous ranking

43 (2023), 42 (2022) & 41 (2021)

Prince’s Grant is a getaway destination on the KZN North Coast, a residential second-home estate and a resort experience. It’s easy to reach on the N2 from Durban, yet offers a remote natural location far from city life. It’s in rural Africa, set among sugar cane plantations.

There are eight Top 100 courses overlooking the Indian Ocean on the KZN coastline, and Prince’s Grant is the most northern. Built on steep rolling terrain, through valleys and over hills, it is a visual feast and an entertainingly varied challenge. Lots of unique looking holes, some in tropical surroundings among the coastal bush, others on higher ground being links-like in appearance.

The colonial-style clubhouse and lodge is a magnificent double-storey building occupying a prime position with sea views, and bears a striking resemblance to that at Shinnecock Hills in the United States. Original developer Guy Smith is a golfing traditionalist, and his clubhouse delivers on that score.

Prince’s Grant is a wonderful year-round destination. In winter golfers are lured there by clear, windless days and warm temperatures.

The golfing terrain changes quickly and golf carts are popular as there are steep climbs between greens and tees, notably on the front nine.

Southern Turf Management has made significant improvements in the last year to several holes on both nines to improve their playability and enjoyment. More bail-out areas have been created for higher handicaps. These include those at the back-to-back par 5s, the sixth and seventh, where water hazards come into play, and the par-4 second. On the back nine the 11th green has been enlarged, the fairway drainage improved on the 12th, and the awkward 13th has undergone changes to widen the landing area off the tee. The par-4 14th, highest hole on the property, called Windy, looks better with new fairway bunkers in place.

Additional Course Facts

Course Record

64 by Jbe Kruger, 2009 SAA Pro-Am Invitational

Feature Holes

The par-5 15th, 486 metres from the club tee, is not only the signature hole, but one of the best-looking holes on the KZN coastline. A high tee on a hillside offers a magnificent view south along the coast, and the hole tumbles down towards a green at sea level. Tropical bush guards the left side of the fairway, and bunkers the right, making for a challenging tee shot. The par 3s are excellent and varied. The third is a pulpit hole with the green fronted by a stream, the 11th has a raised green falling away on both sides, while 17 has a long narrow green with a steep drop on the left into a mangrove swamp. The first and tenth, both par 4s running down from the clubhouse, are strikingly attractive to the eye.

Accommodation

The main lodge / clubhouse has seven comfortable suites on the upper floor overlooking the golf course. Within walking distance are eight double suites (Umdoni) which are ideal for golfing groups, having a self-contained space with swimming pool and entertainment area. Air conditioning in all rooms, en-suite bathrooms, Wifi and DSTV. Booking on the club website. The lodge has The Bunkers restaurant and Mulligan’s Pub. The Eighteenth is a complex of boutique 2- and 3-bedroom furnished apartments a short walk from the clubhouse.

Practice Facility

180-metre long range adjoining ninth fairway; 80m short-game area and putting green at clubhouse.

Did You Know

1/ The Lodge at Prince’s Grant was recognised in the 2016 Golf Digest International Lifestyle awards as being among the world’s best golfing boutique hotels. And rated among the top 10 clubhouses in South Africa.

2/ Prince’s Grant is a 45-minute drive from King Shaka International Airport along the N2 highway.

3/ The 72-hole Prince’s Grant Invitational for leading male amateurs was resumed in May 2022 after a five-year absence and won by Jordan Wessels on level par 288. Past champions include Brandon Stone (2011/12), Haydn Porteous (2013) and Charl Schwartzel (2002).

4/ The tournament pays tribute to the SA Amateur champion, who is granted honorary membership, and clubhouse memorabilia includes photographs of past champions. There is a large painting of 19th century golfer Freddie Tait in the clubhouse entrance. The Freddie Tait Cup is awarded to the leading amateur in the SA Open.

5/ Among the leisure pursuits on the estate – which has 455 homes – are mountain biking, tennis, squash, fishing, canoeing (on a sheltered lagoon alongside the 16th hole) and nature trails. Plus access to a swimming beach.

Club Champions

2022 Stephen Johnston & Marlie Smit
2021 Matthew Hoatson & Liezl Smit
2020 Chris Erasmus & Mogie Moodley
2019 Kyle Kistensamy & Kaleigh Telfer

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Course Reviews
Prince's Grant's switchback topography of rolling hills and valley offers a course with remarkable design variety. An early Peter Matkovich creation, it is 30 years old and has matured into one of SA's more exceptional layouts which hasn't had the proper acclaim it should have received. Possibly due to its out-of-the way location on the KZN North Coast and paspalum greens that are not to everyone's liking. But this is pure golf in an unrivalled setting. A scenic beauty with spectacular looking holes. Seldom do you find 18 such distinctively different holes. You play shots that have you tingling with excitement and trepidation, especially if the wind is up. Every hole stands out in its own secluded valley or plateau. The next hole only comes into view when you arrive on the tee. It's a cart course, yet on a quiet day it's the most wonderful walk, particularly early morning or late afternoon.
Stuart McLean
10 March 2024
We played over the Heritage long weekend. The staff and service was fantastic. The same could not be said for the course. The greens were patchy, bumpy and inconsistent. Fairways bumpy, tee boxes not maintained and uneven.
Idrees Mohamed
25 September 2023
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Fabulous layout with a great variety of special holes. Enjoyable to play and one that I find myself wanting to go back to! It’s a challenging layout with thick bush flanking the fairways so it pays to be straight off the tee. Stunning Aesthetics with cart paths winding through the tropical forest in places and some epic tee shot views, most notably from the elevated par-5 15th with sweeping views of the Indian Ocean. The only drawback was the condition of the greens. They were patchy in places. The clubhouse and lodge overlook the first and 10th tees and make a lovely vista for a post-round beverage.
Amy Laird
15 August 2023
Prince’s Grant is in a truly gorgeous setting with some challenging holes, testing shot-shaping ability. The greens are distressed but hopefully will recover come summer.
Tara Swart
14 August 2023
First played here in 2002 and then in June this year, and I was again impressed by the layout and its numerous challenges. Played three consecutive days as part of a 16-man golf tour, and for weeks afterwards the group was full of positives about this great design, our experience at Prince's Grant, and its superb conditioning. The three closing holes, short par-4 16, par-3 17, and par-5 18, are still being talked about. What a great finishing stretch. We always felt welcomed, given plenty of assistance with our bags, the pace of play was good, and the pro shop well-stocked. Great view and service in the 19th hole overlooking the opening holes of each nine.
Dijon Tintinger
03 July 2023
Prince's Grant have just hosted a week of tournament golf with the country's best amateurs. First up was the 72-hole Prince's Grant Invitational (won on two-under-par 286 by Stals Swart), followed by the 54-hole KZN Open (seven-under 209 by Jordan Wessels). Both had a first day of challenging weather followed by two beautiful days, and few finished under par. Players, observers and members are unanimous in saying that the course is in its best condition in years. Greens running quicker. The KZN Golf Union have asked Prince's Grant to host their Open again in 2024. The support of the club is recognised as "above and beyond" what they normally experience.
Thomas Souness
24 May 2023
PG's greens have come on exceptionally this summer and are putting superbly for the first time in several of my visits. A magnificent destination for golfers whether staying upstairs at the lodge or renting on the estate. One of those courses which offers a stunning walk from first tee to 18th green through fabulous scenery. Riding a cart, as most golfers do here, you tend to miss much of the beauty of your leafy tropical surroundings. The par-5 18th is hidden from the clubhouse, yet on a rise behind the green are benches where golfers can linger at the end of their round; an excellent spike bar before heading to the real 19th, a good old-fashioned one too. Those benches should be filled in May when PG host two big amateur tournaments back-to-back, the club's own invitational (May 15-18), plus the KZN Open Strokeplay (May 19-21).
Stuart McLean
30 March 2023
An unexpected treat. Why isn't Prince's Grant better recognised as one of the special coastal courses in South Africa? In KZN it must be up there with the Wild Coast and Zimbali, and at Prince's Grant you get to see the coastline from the high tee at No 15. Fabulous holes from the moment you tee off in front of the beautiful clubhouse, and some amazing views, notably that at No 15. The variety of different holes impressed me most of all. Each par 3 had an individual look and challenge, as did the four risk-reward par 5s where you face up to bush, bunkers and water. The only drawback would be the lengthy walks between some greens and tees and most golfers are using carts. I loved the walks through the coastal bush. The turf coverage from tee to green was exceptional; like a carpet.
Dieter ten Haag
23 March 2023
Prince's Grant is a secret gem. Great challenging layout which makes you think on every hole about your choice of club. Each hole is different which makes it so interesting to play. The par 5s and par 3s are particularly good.
Rikki Wooding
02 December 2022
Prince's Grant is one of Peter Matkovich's best designs, a standout layout in hilly terrain with a variety of impressive holes. Highly enjoyable to play its primary weakness has been in my experience slow greens. I particularly like his concept of adjacent first and tenth holes leading away from the front of the magnificent clubhouse/lodge. It's an attractive looking and clever design feature, unique among the Top 100. Most courses finish with a hole or two in front of the clubhouse; Matkovich has turned that thinking on its head. This is all about starting the round, not ending it. PG's ninth and 18th greens are out of view to the sides of the clubhouse. Together, Nos 1 and 10 convey a sense of spaciousness for the opening tee shots, although you still need to split the fairway to avoid trouble. The tee boxes are well apart from each other. Bunkers, 15 of them, beautifully frame the two fairways; the first green is plainly visible lower down to the right, the tenth is on a higher plateau on the left. Each hole has its own distinctive character. They set the tone for two brilliantly contrasting nines.
Stuart McLean
31 May 2022
Prince's Grant is to be recommended as a KZN North Coast destination a 30-minute drive from Ballito. It has stunning ocean views, and the indigenous forest amidst the rolling terrain provides superb scenery on each nine. Brilliant conditioning and good playability add to the aesthetics to ensure that golfers of any level will enjoy the course. Each hole has been carefully designed to have distinctive characteristics while maintaining the general theme.
Craig Gunther
13 February 2022
The course was outstanding particularly the fairways which must be the best on the KZN coast. The paspalum greens are just very slow in the summer months. They were very different when I played here last winter. The greens had been overseeded and were magnificent. If only they could overseed throughout the year.
Guy Smith
03 February 2022
Prince's Grant occupies a scenic tract of land on the KZN North Coast and has several memorable holes. I found Look Down (par-3 third) and Career Best (par-5 sixth) the most enjoyable, while the finishing stretch from 15 to 18 provides a good challenge to all golfers. Unfortunately, on the day I visited the course presentation was not up to the expected standard, with poor tees and greens, particularly the 10th green. The surfaces were inconsistent and have not settled. Hopefully the course will benefit from summer rains and the overall conditioning will improve as a result.
Jon James
25 August 2021
It's the furthest north of the KZN North Coast golf courses, but Prince's Grant is always worth going the extra distance to play. Such a beautiful estate to visit, and boasting one of the finest looking clubhouses in the land. I never tire of the view of the scenic first and tenth holes running side-by-side away from the clubhouse. The tropical bush is a feature of a layout full of diversity and designer Peter Matkovich excelled himself here with the way he used the rolling topography to create both fabulous and unique looking holes. Prince's Grant recently reseeded all their greens, so they were on the slow side and firm when I played the course, but quite true.
Stuart McLean
04 May 2021
I'm a regular visitor to Prince's Grant and have never seen the course in better condition. I can't believe there is a course in KZN in better condition than this. The fairways are world class and the presentation outstanding.
Guy Smith
12 February 2021
The elevation changes and routing contributes to the enjoyment of Prince's Grant. The change to the par-5 sixth hole, which now provides a bail-out area short and left of the green, is an improvement over the old design. The course was in good condition with the greens running on the slow side, most likely due to their recent restoration.
Jaco Ackermann
22 December 2020
Prince's Grant reopened their second nine in October after a lengthy closure since lockdown to implement subtle design changes, improve general playability, fix the drainage on the 12th fairway, and restore greens to their previous shapes. The par-3 11th green has been enlarged. The entire course has now been done and it is looking excellent for the festive season ahead. It's a smart thing for clubs to audit their courses every decade or so and fix problems. Prince's Grant is out of the way with a convoluted detour from the N2, but it's worth the extra effort to play there. The design has a wonderful feel and harmony to it through the rolling hills, virtually every hole in its own private space. Only the first and tenth in front of the clubhouse lie side by side.
Stuart McLean
22 November 2020
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