The Royal Adelaide is one of Australia’s most esteemed golf courses. A traditional ‘links’ course, it has been an international championship venue for over a century.
Although the original Royal Adelaide Golf Club was founded in June 1870, it survived but a few years. The current club, founded at Glenelg in 1892, moved to the sandy craters and dunes of Seaton along the city’s western railway in 1904.
The Seaton site remains the home of the club, which was granted approval to prefix the title ‘Royal’ in 1923.
Despite its many alterations, including work by Dr Alister MacKenzie in 1926, Royal Adelaide retains the distinctive character of a comparatively open links course. MacKenzie’s gift to the club was to leave behind the extraordinary 3rd hole that, with a frontal pin, may well be one of the best short par fours anywhere in the world.
The first bungalow-style clubhouse was ready for occupation at the end of 1905 and since that time there have been countless additions and alterations to accommodate the increasing number of Members and their varying requirements.
The links at Seaton has been the venue for many international and interstate matches and championships. The Club has hosted nine Open Championships of Australia and sixteen Amateur Championships of Australia. The Australian Ladies Amateur and Open Championships have also been played over the links – the 2017 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open was the latest major professional event held at the course, with the event returning in 2020. A one-of-a-kind course, Royal Adelaide has changed substantially over the years, yet retained its fundamental character and charm.
Royal Adelaide retains the distinctive character of a comparatively open links course, an attribute by no means common in this country. It is this character which members and visitors alike recognise as a priceless asset in a golf course situated so close to a major city. Taken as a whole, the Seaton course, with its wide open spaces, poses more problems than appear at first sight, except under the most benign conditions. Most members are more than happy to complete their round having played to their handicaps.
After a round of golf, Royal Adelaide serves Four Reds clients with hand-crafted Baker’s Gully Syrah from Clarendon Hills, a family-run boutique producer in the McLaren Vale. This is accompanied by a seasonal tasting platter.
Full crimson-purple; in mainstream Clarendon Hills style, medium- to full-bodied, with obvious French oak on the bouquet and running through the textured palate; spicy black fruits and a touch of liquorice make the running; alcohol and dusty tannins have been held in restraint.
Four Reds clients can avail themselves of an exclusive VIP tasting experience arranged by the Royal Adelaide Golf Club. It features four iconic red wines from the cellars of Clarendon Hills plus a rare opportunity to savour the exceptional Clarendon Hills Astralis Syrah, one of the world’s greatest terroir wines.
The tasting is personally hosted by winemaker Alex Bratasiuk; to arrange a visit to the McLaren Vale and Clarendon Hills, contact Golf Explorer.