Yellow 6135 metres, CR73.3/137
White 5829 metres, CR71.8/133
Blue 5450 metres, CR70.0/130
Red 5149 metres, CR68.6/127
Women’s blue, CR76.3/137
Women’s blue, CR74.4/133
R410, golf cart R380
Danie Obermeyer 2008
Golf was played in the wine region of Robertson for more than a century before the local course upgraded from 9 holes to 18 in the new millennium.
The golf club and course expanded when it became part of the Silwerstrand Golf and River Estate. Developer Mark Brumer first envisaged the project on a visit to the Breede River Valley in 1998. Planning for a golf estate using the Robertson 9-holer began the following year and only in 2004 was approval granted.
The new 18-hole course, designed by Danie Obermeyer on the same land as the old 9-holer, was opened in May 2008. It became the tenth 18-hole course within the boundaries of the Boland Golf Union. It has excellent bent grass greens.
It occupies a flat yet attractive site on the R60 from Worcester as you enter Robertson. The estate is overlooked by the Langeberg mountain range and close to the broad Breede River which has its source in the mountains near Ceres and enters the Indian Ocean through an estuary at Port Beaufort. Vineyards and orchards border one part of the course.
Obermeyer’s designs are known for their distinctive revetted style of bunkering, and he has maintained that theme at Robertson, although minimising them to only 51 bunkers in various strategic positions. His feature hole is one that doesn’t have a single bunker.
Instead, the par-3 seventh has an island green encircled by a broad ring of water, connected by a narrow pathway. It plays between 104 and 159 metres from the four different tees. The green is wide and appears to present a generous target, yet there is not much depth to it, particularly on the right.
The course is divided into two distinct halves, each nine in its own territory, due to an ancient aqueduct which runs through the middle of the estate. It used to supply irrigation water to farms in the region all the way to Swellendam, and is an attractive feature plus serving as a hazard left of the first hole.
This division means the 18th ends among residential homes, rather than in front of the clubhouse. This new building overlooks the opening three holes and a water hazard.
Robertson begins and finishes with a par 5. The opener is a gentle dogleg left, relatively short at 430 metres from the yellow tees. The short par-4 second then returns towards the clubhouse and the shortest of the par-3s, No 3.
The first three holes having given golfers the false impression they are in for an easy round, the course then begins to bare its teeth, and the rest of the nine has some challenging holes, barring the plain short par-4 sixth.
Three of the toughest on the course come along consecutively from No 8 to 10, longish par 4s stroked 4-2-3. Water guards the right hand side of the eighth fairway, yet there is not much of it in general on the layout. The back nine has a mix of interesting and balancing holes, with a strong finishing stretch beginning with the 416-metre 15th, stroke one on the card, following by the driveable 299m 16th, the 373m 17th going slightly downhill and then up to the green, and the adventurous 479m 18th with water close to the green.
2022 Andre Ficks & Sandra van Deventer
63 by Kyle McClatchie on April 26, 2016 in Boland Amateur (33-30) with nine birdies.
This annual event in March at Robertson honours Bobby Locke’s close association with the club. The Open was the idea of club stalwart Johnnie Loubser, a former club champion and voluntary greenkeeper in the days of the 9-hole course, who befriended Locke in the late 1940s. Locke played an exhibition match in Robertson after the new 9-hole course was opened in 1959, and judged it the best 9-holer in the Western Cape. A trophy was purchased and the first Bobby Locke Open contested in ???? Well known champions have been Bertus Smit, a five-time winner, Gerald Williams, Christiaan Basson and Grant Veenstra. Ethan Smith (Paarl) won with an outstanding score of 69-66 in 2021.
There are self-catering homes on the estate which can be found on the estate website. The Grand Hotel is in the heart of the town, four kilometres from the golf course. The tourism office can assist with accommodation requests.
1/ Robertson’s first 9-hole course in 1900 was built near the town’s current airfield. It moved in 1911 to an area where the Kallie de Wet sports complex is situated today, before relocating in 1959 to its present position alongside the Breede River and Silwerstrand caravan park. This 9-hole course was designed by Cape Town golf professional Ken Elkin, whose name is attached to several Cape courses.
2/ Robertson is an agricultural area, and on Route 62 between Worcester and the Garden Route it is central to the Western Cape wine industry. There are 36 wineries in the immediate area, plus fruit orchards. It has also been home to successful race horse stud farms.
3/ Robertson hosted the 2016 men’s Boland Amateur won by Kyle McClatchie on 9-under 207, and the 2020 SA Women’s Mid-Amateur won by Vicki Traut.
4/ There are 400 homes on the residential estate spread around the course and in a self-contained village.
5/ Women’s club champion Sandra van Deventer has won the title 17 times, and men’s champion Andre Ficks is a 14-time club champion. Ficks won the 2022 Bobby Locke Open at Robertson on 3-under 141.
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