Castiglion del Bosco Golf Club was designed by Tom Weiskopf, and opened for play in 2012.
The course is located within the UNESCO listed Val d'Orcia National Park. It is also wine making country- the area is famous for Brunello di Montalcino!
Castiglion del Bosco is owned by Massimo and Chiara Ferragamo, and is the only privately owned golf course in Italy
Weiskopf has done a good job- the course is nicely routed and fits hand in glove in the rolling Tuscan landscape. Quite rightly he appears to have put the emphasis on the estate surrounding the course itself, and in playing the course one is constantly aware of the muted hues of the surrounds. It is not hard to remember you are in Tuscany!
There is nothing brash about the course- each hole appears natural to the site, and like the local Brunello wine, it will mature with time...
Weiskopf has delivered a nicely balanced course, with two different nine hole loops. The first nine is accessed by a tunnel under the road, which brings you to a lovely river valley that contains the outward half of the course. The start is strong with a very natural looking opening par 4, and a delightful downhill par 5 which flirts with the creek along it’s righthand side. The remainder of the nine basically follows the creek up and back the site, changing sides for variety
I thought holes 1 & 2 were classy, strategic holes, and the shorter par 4 fifth was a delight to play. I liked the par 3’s at holes 4 & 8- both of which were relatively simple holes with natural looking green sites protected by well positioned bunkering.
The back nine has a bigger canvass, and the views of the surrounding Tuscan landscape dominate. The routing spreads over a wider area and has more elevation change, and takes you to more varied terrain. Hole 10 is a favourite. It is a mid length par 4 which drops significantly from tee to green. The green can be seen from the tee at the bottom of a narrow valley- it’s a nice looking hole.
Thirteen is perhaps the signature hole at Castiglion. It is a downhill par 5 that measures 685 yards from the tips!
There is also a nineteenth hole at Castiglion- a short par 3 hole called the Brunello hole. It is probably appropriate because the course is displaying the same sort of elegance as the wine, and is just one more reason to visit Tuscany!
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