Swinley Forest Golf Club

Swinley Forest Golf Club, Ascot, South East, England, SL5 9LE

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15 reviews of Swinley Forest Golf Club

Master piece. As half decent, single figure golfers we were tempted to ask to play from the further back pegs but thought better of it. After all, we'd paid our money in order to experience THE classic example of short perfection so why try to add length to the scenario? We had an unforgettable round, so much so that I'm not quite sure that I could possibly write anything which could explain just how impressed we were. Harry Colt apparently regarded Swinley as his best design and I can't argue with that. Maybe if we are lucky enough to play here again we might ask to venture as far back as the whites but, be assured, for first time visits the yellow pegs provide an unforgettable experience.

Posted by NATHAN READING on 09/10/2012
5
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Overall Rating 5
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  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
  • Staff service4
  • Value for money5
  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
  • Staff service4
  • Value for money5

Quite simply the best golf course I have ever played! The clubhouse isn't half as snooty as some would make it out to be and the view from the 1st tee and patio is to die for.

The course measures a paltry 6,000 yards from the back tees but by no means does the course play that short with plenty of par 4s exceeding the 400 yard barrier. Length aside, this course is all about course management anyway and as long as you are sensible and hitting it straight and true you should not find too much trouble. Having said that, hit the ball off line or too far on a dogleg and the heather will quickly jump up to bite you in the bottom!

Speaking of the heather, we played the course in mid September and it was still awash with an ocean of purple on the majority of holes, making for quite a spectacle on a number of tees. How after hole have the wow factor and the par 3s in particular are stunning.

Scores will be made and lost on the greens which feature some serious slopes that are very difficult to spot for the first timers. Downhill putts are slick and uphill putts are slow; the sign of top class greens in my opinion where the player must be wary at all times.

I really couldn't pick a favourite hole as they are all immensely fun...the place may be a bit quirky but as an inland golfing experience there are few to challenge it in the UK.

We were told that in late July the heather is in full flow...and we were impressed with what we saw at the start of autumn!

Top marks in all areas...an absolute gem.

Posted by Rory Anderson on 19/09/2012
5
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Overall Rating 5
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  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
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  • Value for money5
  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
  • Staff service5
  • Value for money5

I played here in a society in October and was very impressed. The layout is in a very broad sense similar to Berkshire, Sunningdale etc but really think there is some individual charm which makes this Colt layout different. Firstly it is a shorter par (68 - SSS 70 off the back tees) and also has some large elevation changes from tee to fairway and fairway to green. I really enjoyed it and although as a society our scores were far worse than our handicaps it was a very fair test of golf. The greens were also excellent, with large breaks and undulations throughout.

Fantastic clubhouse and one of the best golf club lunches you'll ever get to experience. 5 stars - great that a club of such exclusiveness allows some to come and play it rather than be hidden away - would recommend it to all.

Posted by Francis Sears on 04/11/2011
5
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Overall Rating 5
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  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
  • Staff service5
  • Value for money5
  • Green conditions5
  • Clubhouse5
  • Course challenge5
  • Staff service5
  • Value for money5

One of the UK's finest heathland courses. Everything about Swinley is excellent and remains very exclusive which is something few can achieve.

Although the course is short by modern standards, it is a very good test with tight tee-shots and the need for shot making on every hole. There is just one par-5 but the par of 68 ensures that a sharp shortgame is needed if you are going to better your handicap. As the course has very little traffic the greens and fairways are immaculate, easily up there with the best I've played.

The clubhouse is great and can fully recommend the lunch on offer. In short Swinley Forest is a golf club you must play.

Posted by Giles North on 24/08/2011

In a word "Fantastic" a must play golf course and if you phone ahead you can get on even as an individual at certain times of the year.
I played in a two ball on 2nd November 2009 and the welcome was very nice and as other reports have said the place just oozes class. Only downside was the greens were a bit slow but the pro said this is normal compared to neighbouring courses. Pick of the holes were 1st for the fabulous view, 4th, 12th and 15th for sheer difficulty and we played of the back tee's at only 6000 yards but the course plays much longer than this.
My advice is treat yourself to a special day and even at £150 summer rate and £100 winter rate it's still a bargin.

Posted by Adrian Jakeman on 04/11/2009
4
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  • Clubhouse4
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I read with interest the reviews on Swinley. I played 36 holes there in May this year and eagerly looked forward to it after hearing so much about this course. It is without doubt a first class course but I felt it didn't live up to the hype. I would place this above all 3 of the Wentworth courses but I don't rate it as highly as either the red course at the Berkshires or Sunningdale Old. However, the charm of the place cannot be overlooked, it's like stepping back in time and I feel golf is a better sport for having clubs such as this. Modern luxurious clubhouses are fine but there is nothing to compare with the 'olde worlde' that the Swinley's of this world provide.
If you get the chance to play Swinley then I would urge you strongly to take it. The condition and presentation are excellent, the tranquility is unsurpassed and the welcome is warm. In my humble opinion, all that's missing to elevate this course to the very top of any ranking is the glorious abundance of purple heather that you get at the two courses I mentioned above.
If I'd miss this opportunity to play here I would have regretted it for a very long time!

Posted by Gordon Ross on 05/09/2008
3
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I was invited to play Swinley Forest on 4th March 2008. It is simply the most enjoyable day's golf I have ever had anywhere in the world. The presentation and quality of the course is immaculate, I did not find one divot that had not been repaired. The scenery is amazing, when you are playing any hole it is difficult to believe that there are another 17 somewhere, each hole is in its own world. Even in March the greens were excellent and even paced, the fairways are springy and a pleasure to walk on, the bunkers all looked like they had just been raked. This course is set up and prepared to be enjoyed, it is so easy to forget your score and just admire the place. The welcome in the clubhouse was sincere and genuine and the catering was excellent with just about everything home cooked and home made. I hope Swinley continues in its own rather quaint way, its exclusivety and quality are the reasons that make it what it is, totally unique - and long may it continue to give so much enjoyment to so few.

Posted by David O'Sullivan on 07/03/2008
5
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  • Course challenge4
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Played here on 21/09/2006 on a corporate day out. It was I must say a totally amazing day of golf. The weather was fantastic and the course was in immaculate condition for the time of year. A truly picturesque venue. If you ever get a chance to play, grab it straight away. Great fairways, fast greens, exceptional par 3's.

Posted by Amer Awan on 27/09/2006
3
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  • Clubhouse4
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Had the priviledge of playing Swinley Forest on 27/7/05 and despite heavy rain it was a fantastic day out. The course is in immaculate condition and it has without doubt the greatest collection of Par 3's of any course I have come across. For the Par 4's and 5's...just keep it out the heather!
I have played here twice and both times have seen no more than 2 other 4-balls on the course. Pity that so few will get a chance to play it but if you are lucky to get an invite, grab the opportunity.
In my opinion the setting and layout is on a par with nearby Wentworth except it could do with a bit more yardage off the back tees.
Truly a spectacular venue.

Posted by Mark Ratcliffe on 29/07/2005
4
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Re Swinley Forest I disagree with the comment from Guy.We found the welcome very friendly from The Pros shop and the catering staff. The food was first class but the real gem is the course in my opinion the finest of all the Surry courses. If you ever get the chance to play grab with both hands - simly the best

Posted by Richard Greaves on 07/03/2005
0
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I was lucky enough to be invited to play this most beautiful course on a fantastic late August day. I have played many fine courses, but this one made a really huge impression on me. There is nothing with which one could find fault ; beautiful heathland fairways, manicured , fast greens , exceptional setting. The reception in the clubhouse from the stewards and the catering staff was also extremely friendly , and everything from the 'Swinley special' at the bar to the sumptuous lunch was just perfect. If you get a chance to play this magnificent, traditional course - grab the opportunity with both hands.

Posted by Barry O'tuama on 08/09/2003
0
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This is a beautiful course. Was lucky to be invited on a corporate day earlier this month (July 03). Unbelievably exclusive, which is a shame as so few will get to enjoy it.
Great view from club house, looking down on 18th (ideal for members to look down on us mere 'one timers' who may never have the opportunity to play this again). One of the best this country has to offer.

Posted by Andy K on 28/07/2003
0
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If you ever have the chance to play Swinley Forest, grab it with both hands.
It's definitely a candidate for the most exclusive club in the country. You pretty much have to be invited by a member to get on but once you do...
Spring/Summer time, when the rhododendrons are out it's a mass of colour and one of the nicest golfing experiences anywhere. Always immaculately kept, varied and interesting layout, good greens. Two thumbs up.

Posted by harry blake on 25/06/2002
0
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Did you ever think you had died and gone to golfers heaven? Well, play Swinley and feel that experience. A true test of skill, with few problems if you hit the fairways and play sensibly to the greens. But then if I could do that I would be earning mega-bucks, so it's a real challenge. The greens were laid on old railway sleepers that have rotted over time giving interesting borrows - if you can read them accurately. The fairways take run. The rough kills. The scenery is breathtaking. There is only one slight downside and that is the train track on which about every half hour a train thunders along spoiling for a good 30 seconds the tranquility of this wonderful golf course. And sometimes you actually see another golfer! Gets my vote anytime. This is how golf was meant to be played.

Posted by Philip Thomas on 01/08/2001
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One of the finest "Surrey Heath" courses. Unbelievably exclusive, and visitors are not made welcome. Do not be fooled by the length as the course kills the wayward shot. Greens are like lightening in the summer. Akin to St Georges Hill but better.

Posted by Guy on 26/11/1999
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Course information

Number of holes 18
Year opened -
Designer Harry S Colt
Style Heathland

Tee information

Tees Yards Par SSS
Competition 6480 68 70
Men's 6045 68
Ladies'

Green Fees

Summer/High season

Weekday round£80
Weekday day£120
Weekend round-
Weekend day-

Winter/Low season

Weekday round-
Weekday day-
Weekend round-
Weekend day-

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Where is Swinley Forest Golf Club?

Golf breaks at Swinley Forest Golf Club