Learning Uruguay

Every day brings ????

Club de Golf – Monday (free)

Posted by urufish on July 2, 2007


Club de Golf (http://www.cgu.com.uy/historia.asp) is in Punta Carretas which is in Montevideo, Uruguay.  It is a nice club with very nice facilities. 

Today, I was supposed to play with Adam, but he decided to brave the winter Atlantic out Punto del Diablo way.  Substituting for Adam was Aaron Campbell.  I couldnt miss him walking towards my house today.  Golf cap and baggy pants–dressed for the part.  Dont know how I looked.  My main interest was in keeping warm for 2 hours outside at 14 degs. 

I dug up a set of old clubs for Aaron.  I have my clubs from home here.  5 years out of date, but as good as ever.  I was praying that the holder of the clubs was in the same condition.  The doctor told me not to play until December, but I interpreted that as ‘dont play hard’.  So I powerdpuffed today, and I dont feel a pain anywhere. 

Aaron has been to this club before, plus his spanish is good.  Mine is for emergency use only.  We found the club house and rented a couple of push carts for 100 pesos each.  I like the exercise.  When I saw the pushcarts, I wasn’t sure if I’d be pushing, pulling or carrying them. These are the same quality you get in Walmart for $24.95.  Like the Eveready bunny, they’re still running, but barely.  After 3 holes, mine wouldn’t hold my bag any longer so Aaron was kind enough to switch with me.  Turns out his cart was better suited to my bag, so that helped.  The idea of lugging a full set of clubs over the next 4 holes (without a shoulder strap), wasn’t my idea of healthy exercise.  I think, in total, between the two of us, our bags came off the carts 6 times.  But we prevailed. 

The course is a good course to play.  This time of the year the ground is soft, which is a pleasure compared the the dry summer.  It is also important for a person who was told not to play until December.  Smashing your club with stiff wrist and arm into solid earth guarantees a bad feeling in the elbow and shoulder.  I was able to take good sized divots today without any vibration in the arm.  Unexpected and happily received. 

We only played the front 9 because I had to get home early.  Aaron looked like he could go ’til nightfall 🙂   The traps are in nice condition.  The fairways are not littered with divots.  This was the beginning of winter, and we had bright sunshine heating us up.  Outside temp was 14 degrees.  It was very comfortable weather to play in. 

There were a good number of groups on the course.  We let 2 groups play through us.  A group of 2 that we invited to play through and a group of three (with 2 caddies) that literally played through us as if we in a fivesome.  Never seen that done before.  I was standing by our clubs and a ball landed between my legs, bouncing back behind me.  I looked up and these guys were actually driving into us.    Not knowing what the rules are here, we just waited until the 3 old boys had driven and we hit our next shots.  Then they came up and hit theirs past ours and we decided to just let them keep going.  They were pretty good and pretty serious. 

As nice as it was to play again, what interested me the most was the variety of birds on the course.  I finally got to see a pair of green parrots outside of a cage.  There were birds of every kind on the course.  I’ve played the Portland area once and had a stag run past me while I was lining up.  A couple of times at home in Toronto, we had a fox trot past us with a rabbit in his mouth.  Nothing like that here, but the birds were exquisite. 

The course’s main obstacles are trees, but it’s not a wooded course.  For instance, you dont hear the constant crack of balls hitting trees.  The traps were nicely laid out.  A couple of holes had greens pretty much guarded with traps.  I dont know what the rest of the course is like, but I hope to get back next Monday with Aaron and Adam and find out. 


5 Responses to “Club de Golf – Monday (free)”

  1. JP said

    I’d like to join ya and try to learn a bit. Are you an open fraternity?


  2. urufish said

    You’re welcome to join us next Monday.
    We’ll post details (where and when to meet) on the Southron forum topic.. Golf

    This Monday, Thorn, Aaron and myself are going… providing it’s not raining or near zero..

    If you dont have clubs, I’ve got an extra set we’re using to share from.

  3. J.P. said

    Is the gofl club members-only? If so, what are the initiation fees and annual dues? If not, how much is 18 holes with a cart?


    J.P. in Ohio

  4. urufish said

    Club de Golf is a private club. There is an agreement with IMM to let the public play for free on Mondays.
    I dont know what the annual dues are but the inititian fees must be over U$S10K by now. I asked about them a few years ago and someone told me he thought they were U$S8K at that time.

    Compare this ‘best club’ in Montevideo to ‘best clubs’ in US cities. Those are well over U$S100K initiation.
    A push cart if $100. An electric cart will be more. A caddy should be somewhere in between.
    This is supposed to be a private club 6 days a week. That usually means the public can not play UNLESS invited by a member. I believe the greenfee for an invited guest is around U$S20.

    Maybe one of the new expats is an addicted golfer and wants to join. I will get pricing and post it.

  5. gaberoo said

    Monday, July 30, 2007
    Montevideo, Uruguay

    Dear International Living Reader,

    Situated in the center of Montevideo, the Club de Golf de Uruguay (commonly known as the Punta Carretas Golf Course) has a superb clubhouse with a gym, outdoor and indoor swimming pools, and two excellent restaurants. Apart from being a popular venue for hosting events and parties, this club is a social center for the higher echelons of Uruguayan society. It takes a little determination and a few thousand dollars to push your way in as an expatriate, but the facilities are outstanding. On Mondays, non-members are allowed to use the golf course free of charge. Tel: + (598) 2 710 1721.

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    But this is not your only option as a golfer in Montevideo: About 15 miles to the east of the city, not far from the International Airport and the residential suburb of Carrasco, lies La Tahona Golf Club, the newest in the city. It’s an attractive course, long and fairly difficult, winding through a maze of new houses. There is a more democratic feel in this club, which attracts young, unpretentious Uruguayan players. La Tahona has an open-air pool, tennis courts, gym facilities, and a restaurant. Tel: + (598) 2 6840004.

    The oldest golf club in Uruguay is El Cerro, a forgotten jewel sweeping down to a small cove on the Rio de la Plata about 10 miles west of the city center. Lying just below the Cerro fortress, this spectacularly beautiful course was designed by Alister McKenzie, and has views over Montevideo and the Rio. The course runs through established parkland, and the colors are sensational in the fall. The wooden clubhouse was brought over from Chicago in the early 20th century, and has not been changed since. It has an old worlde feel to it, with open log fires and ancient rules posted on the walls. Tel: + (598) 2 3111305.

    This friendly club has a restaurant but no other facilities. With no entrance fee, it is by far the best value of the three golf clubs I’ve mentioned–it has fewer members, and its only drawback is that to access it you have to drive through one of the poorest areas of the city. Many diplomats and British expats play here.

    I am reliably informed that every hole at El Cerro is a challenge, and my pundit tells me that the secret is to lay up between the bunkers every time–if you force it and try to go for the pin you may find it hard to break 100.

    El Cerro has a partnership deal with La Tahona. For a small additional fee, members of one can play at the other. So, my recommendation is to join El Cerro, get the partnership deal for La Tahona, and play free at the Club de Golf de Uruguay on Mondays.

    Paola Fornari

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