Seve's French Test: Pont Royal

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Pont Royal: An attractive Provence course by Seve Ballesteros is complemented by four-star accomodation

Seve Ballesteros' only design in France is the 18-hole course of Pont Royal that winds among pine woods and typical Provencal countryside. 

The golf club is located within a Domaine of the same name which also includes a pretty Provencal-style village, wooded areas, lakes, pools, bars, and restaurants. Pont Royal is situated in Mallemort, between Aix-en- Provence and Avignon, 30 minutes from Marseille and Avignon airports, 90 minutes from Montpellier and two hours from Nice.

Accommodation is offered in the four-star, 102-room Moulin de Vernègues, part of the Châteaux & Hôtels Collection, or in apartments, villas and houses within the pedestrianised Pierre & Vacances village. Moulin de Vernègues offers standard, superior and deluxe rooms in a choice of the historic original stone property or in the modern extension. For foodies, La Table du Moulin gourmet restaurant and the more traditional Vaults restaurant provide outstanding local produce. There is also an intimate spa. 

Pont Royal is arguably the region's number one course and has won widespread acclaim for its sensitive design since it opened in 1992. 

Many holes are blessed with a plateau setting, offering stunning views to the Luberon and Alpilles mountain ranges. Technical shaping of shots is required to reach the true, slick greens, and visitors enjoy a wide variety of holes that form a smooth and seamless experience. It also contains some tough holes – none more so than the 11th, where you face a 215-yard shot across a rocky valley to a raised green.

The European Challenge Tour will visit Pont Royal for the first time in September (20-23). For 10 years it hosted an Alps Tour event, with the likes of Jean-François Remésy, Raphael Jacquelin, Grégory Havret, Victor Dubuisson and Alexander Levy all competing.

Now, the Open De Provence by Hopps Group is on the Challenge Tour schedule. The 37-acre Durance Training Centre is on the Domaine and comprises a two-storey driving range, large putting green, short-game practice area, and 1.039 yard, six-hole course, featuring five par-3 holes and one par 4, plus a David Leadbetter Academy. 

Award contender

Pont Royal has also been nominated for the title of France's best golf course in the 2018 World Golf Awards. Its inclusion in the nominees for the award sees it come up against some of the most prestigious courses in France, including two venues which have previously been crowned the best in Europe and a third which will host the Ryder Cup in September.

Stay and play available from €150 per night. For more details visit golf-pontroyal.com

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