CAPE TOWN, South Africa -- Steenberg Golf Club is ready to put a season of struggling course conditions in the past.
Justin Roux, the club's golf director, said bad water killed a number of the greens last year, forcing a lengthy battle trying to get them healthy again. All the greens were reseeded with bentgrass in January 2015. Roux said that's when the club decided on an all-encompassing improvement project where a new irrigation system was installed, bunkers were reshaped and filled with new sand and the tees were all re-grassed and laser-leveled. Roux said better conditions will greet golfers in 2016.
Steenberg has all the pieces to be memorable, whether it's for a round, a meal or a weekend. The Steenberg Golf Estate sits on the site of the Cape's first farm, dating to 1682. Steenberg, just 15 minutes from the famous Cape Town waterfront, has transformed into a flourishing golf-and-wine getaway within a built-out neighborhood.
The Steenberg Hotel, a five-star relaxation zone of 24 rooms, and the Bistro Sixteen82, a hot spot for wine tastings and lunch, and Catharina's Restaurant are all tucked into the vineyard on the hillsides.
The 6,345-meter Steenberg G.C. -- ranked 31st among the country's best courses by Golf Digest South Africa in 2014 -- offers nice views of the vineyard, as well as the surrounding Silvermine mountain range. Water comes into play on seven holes, most memorably at the par-3 seventh and the par-5 finisher. South African architect Peter Matkovich added waste bunkering on a tough stretch of holes (12-14).
If you don't play well, don't fret. A good glass of wine and fine meal is never far away at Steenberg.