The Vintage Golf Course – December 2016 I was heading to the Hunter Valley in NSW for a promising ceremony/love party and my sister, April, booked us accommodation at the Chateau Elan which is part of The Vintage Golf Resort and Spa.
That was back in August. I was living in Canada and working on Fairways so after she told me we were staying at a golf resort, I contacted Richard Mercer the resident golf pro to talk all things junior golf.
Richard was happy to connect and we arranged to meet up on the 16th December when I was in town.
It was raining the whole drive up and April laughed when I said I would in fact be golfing regardless (providing there is no lightning).
I did ask April if she wanted to golf and she laughed and said “I don’t like golfing in the sun, I am not golfing in the rain”.
I met with Matt Farley, the Director of Golf and Richard Mercer, Director of Instruction, for a golf chat about Fairways, my golf journey to date and junior golf in the Hunter Valley.
Richard runs a fantastic junior program and we had a long golf chat about this and Fairways.
Dickie and Matt love what I have started with Fairways, they are very supportive and will be joining us on the Dawn to Dusk Golf Challenge in June 2017.
After a golf chat and a cup of tea I headed out with Dickie as he was going to play a few holes with me before he shot off to another engagement.
It had been wet but the rain had stopped for now.
My first drive was very good while Dickie went the tricky round about way to the hole. We both got a bogie and headed to the second.
My second drive was terrible, shot off the side of the club and landed about 50 metres to the left of me in the scrub. In fact in retrospect it may not have even gone that far. Dickie told me to have a mulligan and tee it up again but I said no as I own my crap shots and punched my second shot through the trees back on to the fairway.
The course meanders among houses and vineyards and I must say Greg Norman has certainly designed a gorgeous track.
Dickie waved to all the residents as we negotiated the 5th and when we finished the hole Dickie headed home and I continued playing.
I teed off the 6th, shot down the soggy fairway and the rain started. It was a light rain until I stopped to put on my wet weather gear and it started pouring. Within minutes everything was quite wet and yet I continued to golf.
I was still taking photos with my phone and trying to wipe it with my shirt which was still dry but wouldn’t stay that way as I continued to snap photos and try to wipe my phone off.
I didn’t see another person out there as the rain poured and I kind of liked having the course to myself.
It was soggy and there was lots of casual water that I played around but it didn’t take away from the beauty of the course.
I did donate a few balls although maybe I didn’t spend too much time looking because of the weather.
As I finished the 17th a marshal shot by in a cart – I think checking to see if there was still anyone on the course. I waved a soggy arm and headed to the 18th tee.
My last drive of the day was my best (I always love that) and as I played up the 18th the rain stopped. By the time I finished the sun was trying to peak through the clouds.
The Vintage is beautiful and I look forward to returning and teeing it up here when it isn’t so wet.
I popped into the pro shop when I finished but Matt had already left for the day so I got picked up and dropped off at our villa.
April laughed when I came inside and couldn’t believe I played in the rain on my own.
The accommodations are fantastic and I jumped in the shower to warm up before we headed to dinner at The Legends Grill.
We ordered the lamb shoulder and as it was a 40 minute wait we went back in the bar and played chess until dinner was ready.
The lamb was divine although we just couldn’t eat it all.
The staff at the resort are wonderful and I was very glad to get the warning about the kangaroos at night which was good to know coming home from the wedding the following night.
The next morning we were up early for a session at the gym and then some pool time before we headed to our friends nuptials.
A fantastic weekend filled with golf, food, sunshine, love and a spot of dancing.