The Scandinavian (New)

The Scandinavian (New)

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Course Information

The New course at this stylish modern club on the outskirts of Copenhagen opened in 2011 – 12 months later than its sister the Old.

It would be easy to conclude the second course to start and finish got the better half of the land and perhaps even suffered from mental and physical fatigue from those involved in creating it, given Robert Trent Jones Jnr’s firm built both courses.

Our ranking suggests not though. With just one place separating the courses in our Continental European ranking, and with them being ranked first and second in highly competitive Denmark, it is clear we believe they are exceptionally well matched.

RTJ was hands on with both courses even if it was his long-time associate Bruce Charlton who spent many months on site, creating the two courses out of 200 hectares of forest, streams and natural ponds.

If you have the impression that this sounds like an idyllic location for a game, you aren’t incorrect. But the process of turning it from an old military base into two world-class golf courses was hardly tranquil.

The owners of The Scandinavian – Jesper Balser, Peter Bang and Torben Wind (see The Scandinavian (Old) for more about their backstory) – bought Farum Barracks 25 minutes north of Denmark’s capital in 2002 but it wasn’t until 2006 that construction began.

Construction itself was hardly straightforward because before being used by the military, the site was a clay pit – hardly ideal as a base for golf. So, the playing areas areas are capped by tones and tonnes of sand.

The New is also routed expertly, especially on a back nine where consecutive holes run in remotely the same direction only at 15 and 16.

The rest, incidentally, has been left untouched because in typical Scandinavian fashion, sustainability and recycling is coveted by the owners and the club. The non-golf areas are thus preserved as an environment in which fauna and flora flourish while water is recycled in lakes and used for irrigation.

That does not mean the courses are raw though. Anything but. Scottish greenkeeper Russell Anderson and his ample resources present courses that have few peers in terms of conditioning in Northern Europe.

Its presentation is one notable theme on the New.

Another is its spacious feel, even if it looks a little tighter than the Old; often it is visually more intimidating than the reality once you’ve walked down the fairway.

Nevertheless, the New is not a course where raw power will get the job done. Off the back tees it is 7,129 yards and an absolute beast, so the average handicapper should play it at its mid-6,000 level to allow themselves the chance to reject hitting driver on every hole.

The New is also routed expertly, especially on a back nine where consecutive holes run in remotely the same direction only at 15 and 16.

The opening nine, meanwhile, is a perfect symmetrical mix of par 3s, 4s, and 5s.

While water plays a key role in the New, the hole likely to live longest in the memory is the 11th, where the old military shooting range has been used cleverly to create a wonderful par 4.

Two of the two-shot holes are protected by water. The 6th has a pond in play off the tee and that means even those who bravely drive close to its edge have at least a mid-iron approach to a benched green while two holes later the approach to a shallow, sporty green is made even more exacting by its left half being guarded by water.

Of the par 5s, the first two are genuine three-shotters for most of us but the last is a chance for all to have a go at the left-to-right uphill dog leg.

The short holes start at the pretty but tricky 2nd, whose green has a step in its front third, continue at the uphill 5th with its characterful, natural green, and end next to the clubhouse at the 9th, with water lining its right side.

But while water plays a key role in the New, the hole likely to live longest in the memory is the 11th, where the old military shooting range has been used cleverly to create a wonderful par 4.

The drive on this slight dog-leg is straightforward but then you must steer your approach down a narrow funnel of trees to a funky, sloping green.

The toughest of the the par 5s follows while there is a terrific three-shot run from the 14th – a short dog-leg downhill hole to the course’s funkiest green – which is followed by the lakeside 15th and concludes on the New’s best green site that sits on a ledge with a bank to the right and fall-off to the left.

The Scandinavian’s New concludes with a hole with more water than dry land and leaves one in little doubt that while it might have been the second to be built, this was far from an after-thought by owners, architects or constructors. Chris Bertram

 

Information

Robert Trent Jones Jnr

+45 4817 4020

The Scandinavian , Oldvej 3 , Farum , Denmark , DK-3520