The Originality and Uniqueness of Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club
April 25 2019
April 25 2019
If you are a golfer who loves to travel as much as enjoy a stellar round of golf, then you will probably agree that there’s no shortage of exceptional golfing destinations to choose from in the world. From the rolling greens of Scotland to challenging holes surrounded by rugged dunes in Tasmania, there’s probably already a host of incredible golf courses on your travel bucket list.
Many might argue that few of the courses in the world are quite as unique and distinctive as that at Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club. The par 72, 18-hole championship golf course here, designed by Bernhard Langer, is difficult not to fall in love with. Not only is it a course that is equal parts challenging as it is enjoyable, it’s also set on its very own slice of paradise surrounded by tropical cerulean waters and lush gardens.
With an array of novel features, it’s no wonder that this golf course is considered by many to be one of the best in the world. Here are just a few of the things that make Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club so wonderfully unique:
The Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club is located on the iconic Ile aux Cerfs, just off the east coast of Mauritius. This exquisite island was once inhabited by cerfs (deer) and is now known as a top leisure and golfing destination, high up on the list of many people’s must-play lists. From a plethora of land- and water-based activities and sublime culinary offerings to an exclusive golfer beach and sensational greens, everything you could possibly want for a memorable day spent in paradise is catered for here.
To add to the magic of this stunning island, it’s only accessible by sea or air, offering discerning guests a multitude of exciting ways to reach the island (helicopter, catamaran, yacht and speed boat to name a few options). This helps to ensure that from the moment you arrive to the minute you leave, your experience of Ile aux Cerfs is extraordinary. There are no two ways about it; Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club is where golfer’s dreams come true.
The course’s superb design
The multi-award winning championship course at Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club was designed by the highly-respected golfing legend Bernhard Langer - who still participates in professional events today - and it is undoubtedly some of his finest work. In fact, he stated himself that Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club is the most spectacular golf course he has ever designed. Bernhard Langer took great pride in creating Ile aux Cerfs, and he was on the island itself overseeing the construction to ensure that he personally was connected to the design and construction phases of the world-renowned golf course.
Previously known to be a challenging course, Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club has recently undergone a number of upgrades and changes to make it more accessible for players of all levels. Thus, ensuring that the course is no longer as technically challenging as it was in the past, giving beginners the chance to swing from a forward tee and fully enjoy their round of golf along with the more experienced golfers who are able to test their mettle from the more advanced tees.
Many of the holes at Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club boast breathtaking sea views that reach over the perfectly manicured greens and lush, tropical gardens straight to the sparkling turquoise Indian Ocean lagoon. Each hole on this course has been carefully created around the natural elements of the island, ensuring minimum impact on the surrounds and allowing the wonderful tropical gardens to thrive.
This also results in each hole boasting a unique design, twisting around lakes, endemic trees, volcanic rocks, bunkers and other exciting obstacles. Here, every shot is exciting (and counts!) and because of this, the course encourages each golfer to really think about each hole and decide carefully which club to take out of the golf bag.
The awe-inspiring flora and fauna
At Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club, nature abounds, with stunning natural elements twisting and weaving their way into the course itself. Every hole on the course is designed to blend in with the incredible array of flowers and trees, which gives the impression of playing golf in a veritable garden of Eden, with hibiscus flowers, famous mangroves and the huge, impressive, ancient Banyan tree being some of the highlights.
While there are no longer deer on the island, there is a wealth of birds that call Ile aux Cerfs home, as do mongooses (who have a penchant for stealing unguarded cookies from the golf carts), colourful lizards and of course, the array of marine life in the lagoons.
The unusual landscapes
As we have mentioned, one of the things that makes Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club so distinctive is the natural elements of the golf course. Volcanic rocky outcrops and lakes create esthetical features which add to both the beauty and complexity of the course.
The natural water hazards, which Ile aux Cerfs is well known for, rise and fall depending on the ocean’s tides. The hole number 9, par 5, has a particularly beautiful water feature that adds an element of excitement to the game; golfers can aim for the green from their second shot, watch it carry over the lake on the right-hand side of the fairway, and hope that it lands where they want it to. Hole number 3 is also a thrilling one thanks to the natural water hazards close to the green.
The sublime greens
Only the very best grass, Paspalum grass, is used at Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club, in-line with other high-profile international golf courses. This grass is ideal for the natural condition of the golf course and being a sand-based course, drainage occurs more naturally and quicker than if it was soil, thus ensuring there are no, or only a few, patches where water accumulates when it rains.
The greens here are manicured and maintained throughout the year and many maintenance tasks are still done manually, such as cutting the greens by hand with scissors. The island has a dedicated greenkeeping team who have many years of experience.
Some of the holes have elevated greens to give golfers unbelievable views and a real opportunity to take in the stunning golf course on which they are playing. These greens - even if you are not having the best round of your life - help you to remember how exceptional it is to be on Ile aux Cerfs and makes everything worth it. Many of the holes allow you to embrace the view of the sparkling, crystal-clear Indian Ocean lagoon and gives the sensation of being able to putt over the ocean.
The technical holes
All of the 18 holes are unique in their design and difficulty, which ensures players are constantly kept on their toes during a round of golf. Apart from the actual aesthetics and challenges of each hole, there is also a mix of par 3, par 4 and par 5 holes, ensuring that golfers are constantly stimulated.
The signature hole at Ile aux Cerfs Golf club is the hole number 11, with its stunning green that runs alongside the sea. This hole has held the title of the signature hole since the course’s opening in 2003, despite having been redesigned. Having said that, at the end of the day, every golfer - according to their preferences and feelings - will have their own idea of the which hole here is the signature hole, and there sure is enough choice.
The two greens on the 18th hole and other extraordinary features
While the obvious factors - being set on a magical island in the Indian Ocean and the course’s novel design by Bernhard Langer - certainly contribute to Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club being a unique course, it’s also the only course in the world that has two playable greens on the 18th hole.
But that’s not all; there are also old ruins found on hole number 6, an exclusive golfer beach close to hole number 4 that has its own bar, sun loungers and a seafood grill (that offers delicious grilled lobster!), and different tee-box locations which means that depending on the tee-box you choose to play off, the course actually plays differently (there are 4 tee-boxes: black, white, yellow and red and some of them are higher up and accessible by steps). All this culminates in one fact; a round played on Ile aux Cerfs Golf Course will stay with you long after the final hole.
Above all else, Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club offers more than a round of golf; it offers a memorable and unparalleled golfing experience for passionate fans of the sport. With paradisaical powder-white beaches, an unrivalled Bubble Lodge stay-over experience, a wide array of dining outlets, other water- and land-based activities, and the ultimate spots to enjoy mesmerising views and after-golf cocktails, a day spent on Ile aux Cerfs promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. If you would like to book a round or a night at the Bubble Lodge or if you simply have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.