Golf d’Opio Valbonne : Historical courses
Its Gallo-Roman aqueduct, its 17th century bastide, its hundred-year-old trees, its fifty years of existence, make this golf course a course that draws its very special soul from history.
In 2001, the Opio Valbonne golf course, like the nearby Grande Bastide, became part of the Open Golf Club, a leading group in the field of top-of-the-range golf hotels, with sixteen golf destinations in France, Portugal, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Switzerland… This golf course was designed in 1966 on 220 hectares by the great master of English architecture, Donald Harradine, a European reference of the 20th century. He had the art of imagining layouts that were simple in appearance, in perfect harmony with the environment, but difficult to practice. This architect was particularly renowned for excelling in the design and construction of courses with problems of terrain or budget. At the time, golf courses were not yet so numerous on the French Riviera. His fame quickly grew in this unique site where hole N°1 is only 100m from the Château de la Bégude, built in pure Grand Siècle classicism. In a dense vegetation, constrained by the bed of the Bégude which flirts with the fairways on half of the course, this golf course is therefore recognized as rather technical. Some holes require particularly method and tactics. This is the case of the blind teeing off of n°6 towards a wide fairway then a high green, the green of N°11 nicknamed the “glacière”, a windy corridor in winter, or the N°15 and 16 which are as if nested between the elm trees and the hackberry trees and dominated by the remains of the aqueduct. In 2002, modifications were made by the French architect and former golf instructor, Robert Berthet, who has recently passed away. But they in no way distort the original style.