A Golf Getaway to the Dordogne

Chateau des vigiers, dordogne, france

16th-century Château des Vignes, Dordogne

One day I want to indulge one of my French travel wishes – to enjoy a long weekend of golf in the countryside.  And I believe I’ve discovered just the right place to indulge that wish.

Set in the Dordogne, near Bordeaux and Saint-Emilion, the 16th century Château des Vignes is an appealing blend of classic and contemporary.  The 4-star Château is regal, set like a Grand Dame in the undulating landscape of a spectacular 27-hole golf course with special attention to the “natural” golf course design.   The beautifully restored centerpiece and resort have been designated one of the “Small Luxury Hotels of the World”.

A little side note is interesting.  I know France hasn’t much of a golfing tradition.  Perhaps, with so much beauty, culture, history and “je ne sais quoi”, they simply haven’t the time or desire to chase a little white ball around grassy knolls.  But there was one notable French golfer who made history more for his loss than Paul Lawrie’s win at the British Open at Carnoustie.  In a virtual bow to the theme of the movie “Tin Cup”, in 1999 Frenchman Jean Van de Velde stepped to the 18thtee with a healthy 6-stroke lead. To make a long story short, he made one bad decision after another, spending twenty excruciating minutes working his way in and out of the barns and water.  Though his triple-bogey took him into the playoff, he would not walk away with the Claret Jug.  An interesting story, but let’s get back to our golf escape.

chateau golf in Dordogne near Bordeaux

Comfortable rooms, exquisite views

I’m not sure if we would choose one of the classic Chateau rooms or one of the spacious patio wing rooms with our own terrace overlooking the gardens or golf course; but all rooms are beautifully furnished with every comfort.  Though there is a beauty and spa centre, I rather think we’ll just play golf, enjoy leisurely lunches and perhaps explore Saint-Emilion and local vineyards, as our sole side trip.

Just the thought of playing golf and relaxing in the countryside is quite enough to satisfy this particular travel wish.  And at day’s end, we’ll dine “al fresco” on the scenic terrace overlooking the lake, while the wine steward fetches our favorite rose from the wine cellar.  Sounds heavenly, doesn’t it?

We’d love to hear from you!  swsheridan@francedailyphoto.com

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