17 reviews of De Vere Belton Woods Hotel and Country Club
Played the Lakes course twice and overall I would say this is a good test of golf. There are some really outstanding holes on this course and some very average ones too. The greens were tip top but the fairways were in poor condition and preferred lies were allowed. The back nine is harder than the front with the 10th and 17th holes outstanding. The hotel is excellent, service and staff both highly recommended but the cost of golf is prohibitive at £45 for a round. I would rate the entire experience out of
We stayed and played at Belton Woods 12-13 June, playing the Woodside and Lakes courses. Overall we were pleased with our stay, however the weekend was spoiled slightly by the very slow play. Five and half hours for 18 holes of golf is not acceptable, and reaching the 17th tee (a par 3) and finding four groups waiting is soul destroying on a hot day. I On the plus side the accomodation (a lodge) was really very nice (B&O telly and hifi, sauna etc), the food good and staff on the whole friendly. The courses are nice, with the exception perhaps of the back nine on the Woodside, which is a little boring. Greens were excellent and fast throughout. I would go back, but not at the weekend, as I imagine that it is much quieter mid week on course.
£99 for 2 rounds of golf plus DBB in a 4* hotel was great value for money, that was the the general concensus of the 14 guys on the sunday driver in June 2008 & Belton Woods. The De Vere standards were typically high, as are the bar prices. £3.50 for a bottle of peroni! We ate dinner in the clubhouse bar as this is used as a second restaurant for the hotel which was slightly dissapointing, but the atmosphere was great as 70+ golfers enjoyed the US open on the large screen TV (needs updating as the picture quality is not the best) The Woodside and the lakes are a fair challenges of golf, we had h'cappers fom 6 to 28 in our group and they all enjoyed the challenge. Greens and fairways were in good condition, the sand in the bunkers was gritty but that was the least of the problems as previous visitors to the bunkers had failed to rake them! I hope they read this,feel guilty and may the wheels fall off their trolleys!
Played both courses on a package break on weekend of 29 Feb/1st March. Well, I say both courses but on Friday 29th the 30mph winds plus rain made us decide to abandon our first round on The Lakes course after 6 holes. A pity really because it was in good condition given the time of year. The greens were quick and the bunkers in excellent condition. Fairways were ok but I can imagine they can be a bit patrchy once the hot weather comes - difficult to keep a decent amount of grass on them. The Woodside course was played in equally windy conditions but without the rain. It runs around the outside of the Lakes course and on higher ground, until the last two holes, which come back into the centre of the site, and run amongst the Lakes course for a finish in front of the clubhouse. Water comes into play on these last two. The Woodside will afford some great views across the whole of the complex in the better weather especially playing the second and third, which should add to the enjoyment. When we played, all the bunkers were GUR but the work they were doing on them the looked good, some being rivetted with deep faces a la classic links. If the quality of the sand when filled matches those on the Lakes (that I went into) then this will be a decent test of golf. Again, the greens were in good nick for the time of year. I would not say that either course was especially testing off the yellows, particularly the Woodside, since the name is a bit of a misnomer. There is a distinct lack of proper trees in play and it is very exposed. The water on The Lakes is going to be more of a problem, especially when the wind blows. Off course, the De Vere standards were typically high, as are the prices. BUT...the clubhouse bar is being used as a second restaurant for the hotel from 7.30pm onwards, so you get kicked out before well before then. You can move through to the hotel bar but after you're kicked out but that kind of changes the atmosphere of a drink in the 19th, in my opinion.
Played the Lakes and Woodside courses over a two day stay 27/28th December 2007, party of 10. The facilities are first class ( to be expected from a **** Star Hotel complex). Both courses were a real challenge made all the more difficult by the galeforce winds. Preferred the Lakes course with its well positioned bunkers and water hazards making course management an absolute must. (EG Palying a 6 Iron from 150 yards, nailing it but still landing 10 yards short !!) .Having said this both courses are quite open so only real danger of losing balls are in the water. The course/s were well presented considering the poor weather conditions prior to our break. Given the package we negotiated suggest we had good value for money, 2 rounds of golf, BB and Eve Meal and unlimited use of the hotel facilities, pool,sauna,Turkish steam rooms etc for £99. The food was excellent and all the staff extremely helpfull. Did have some doubts having read the previously posted reviews, but glad to say our experience was positive. Only real complaint was that our Golf booking had been lost !!. This could have been a real disaster but the Pro started us on the 10th both days, bit disapointing on day two as we were split up when reaching the first for our final 9 of the two days. All in all a worthwhile visit and the intention is to repeat same time next year
Our society recenty played the Woodside, Lakes and Red Arrows course at Belton Woods. Let me start off by saying money paid to play on each course does not appear to equal money spent on course preparation and maintenance, or even get close to it. Perhaps playing in October you would expect a little less than perfect playing condictions, if so you would also expect to be paying a bit less than their normal price. The Red Arrows is nothing but a warm up/down par 3 course where despite the hotel website saying that you would need a full range of clubs, two, perhaps three does cover your needs. On to the other courses. In general we found the fairways patchy and less defined than the average course. As established by other reviewers, the bunkers are a joke and full of grit and stones and do damage your clubs as we all found out. Stay out of the bunkers to retain the condition of your clubs, perhaps an understatement but what else can you say. Most of the greens had been spiked, and that was it, holes all over the place. All in all poor value for money taking all this into account. As for the design of the Woodside and Lakes, we found them to be OK, quite wide open and you had to be very wayward to lose any balls, and belive me we tried at times. On arrival, we had booked to play the Woodside first, but were told we had been booked on to the Red Arrows course in error. The good thing is that they soon rectified that but I suspect there were some delays for those following us as the course was quite busy on that day and they had to shoehorn us in to the schedule. The hotel bars and catering were not the best we have ever encountered, so again a minus for this part of the package. Our overall impression, we wouldn't go back as there are far more better places we have previously been to and probably have yet to visit.
So the somewhat depleted Woodseats Amatuer (as if clarification was ever needed) Golf Society moved on to Belton Woods for its annual Autumn Golf break with expectations running high. Arriving early enabled us to indulge in a bacon sandwich which at over £3 was a bit steep (Tesco value bread anyone?)but never mind... We then booked in with the pro to find our tee off times were not shown on his computer although we had e-mail confirmations a few apologies later we were squeezed in behind the Red Arrow Society (cue jokes about formation golf etc.)a little late but hopes were still high. We played the Woodside on day one and the course was very disappointing. The layout was repetitive, the greens, tees and fairways were in awful condition considering the weather (we played in early Oct). Worst of all was the bunkers which were filled with a couple of inches of sharp sand liberally cut with gravel. Not only did this make for unpredicatable bunker shots but it also damaged my 7 iron (boo!) Still the Woodside was the cheaper of the two courses and we still had the other facilities to look forward to !! So after a brief lunch break (without lunch due to a 45 min wait and £7 for a "Flat Bread" pizza) we played on the £6 Academy course (chip and putt to you and me)which was fun more due to the 6 ball we played in and the quality of golf rather than anything else. So onto the Hotel for the evening festivities where we made good use of the facilities which were OK as were the rooms. Fortunately we had the foresite to book into the resturant and enjoyed a reasonble carvery (after no lunch anything would have tasted ok). However the cheapest bottle of house red was £18.50 and was at best mediocre. Sunday saw the WAGS playing on the Lakes course which was marginally better than the Woodside abeit a little contrived with muddy ponds (sorry Lakes)placed predicatably infront of several greens. The course was again in atrocius contdition given the green fees with bins overflowing, spiked bumpy greens and course sand in the bunkers. It was difficult to see where the fairways ended and the rough began ! Unfotunately we did not have the foresite to book a table for the evening and were told by hotel staff that the Al la Carte Resturant was shut and that they could only fit us in at 21:30 for the carvery which had run out of meat by the time we were seated. Fortunately the chef was able to prepare some steaks! All together a very disappointing experience. The whole Belton Woods set up is about squeezing as much money out of its customers as possible without re-investing this money into what could be half decent courses. Don't be seduced by the apparently cheap offers as any money saved on the initial outlay will be spent on eating and drinking. You are far better off paying a little extra and going to Breadsall Priory, Forest of Arden, Forest Pines etc. all of which are significantly better than Belton Woods. Our local muni course puts the Belton Woods courses to shame yet still manage to charge less than £20 a round !!
Just played the Lakes course and am trying to think of something positive to say about it. Considering the £45 price tag for a Sunday round .. (in October !!), these guys are serioulsy taking the micky. The course was dull, greens were spiked (although they wouldn't have been much better if they hadn't been), fairways scruffy, bunkers hard (that's sand, and not challenging!) and the tees were uncared for. Even with 2-fore-1 this place is totally overpriced. For a good exmaple of quality hotel golf, go to Breadsall Priory (Derby). For a good example of quality 'value for money' golf, go to College Pines (Worksop). So unless you're loaded, stupid or both stay away from this place - it's a shocker !
Great value for money! Group of 20 spent sunday and monday at the hotel playing both courses. Both were in good condition the only downsde was the bunkers which needed attention regarding the poor condition of the sand and numerous stones. Both courses were challanging in different ways especially when the wind was blowing across the fairways. Hotel,facilities and food were very good. For £99 its well worth paying a visit.
23/8/07. Played Woodside 9 holes, quite good but some very long distances from green to next tee makes for a lot of walking. Also played Lakes, very disappointing, extreemly unimaginative layout. Little variation between holes and some very coarse sand in bunkers. Greens good, fairways also good ( albeit monotonous ). Catering in Tapps bar amateurish bordering on farce. Avoid if possible, look for a pub in area before booking and go there.
myself and five workmates spent two days(one night) at belton woods in early june 2007. we played the lakes on the first day, and the woodside course on the next.both courses were in great condition and a treat to play. if we did have a complaint it was that the bunkers on the woodside course could do with more decent sand and less water in them, but this did,nt spoil our enjoyment.the hotel itself is very comfortable,with friendly helpful staff and fantastic food.worries we had about bar prices turned out to be unfounded as we stuck to jugs of lager in the tapps bar! we will certainly be back
Played the Red Arrows and Woodside courses during a week-end stay at the hotel. Both a tad disappointing but bad weather may have coloured my view. The Red Arrows is okay for the beginner and some tee shots need to carry water and avoid punishing rough. Overall though the course wasn't well looked after and a little scruffy. The Woodside was a bit dull and uninteresting to be honest with a lot of holes having similar lay-outs. My son played in a junior competition on the final morning and the locals didn't go out of their way to be helpful. Bad weather abandoned the event at the 9th anyway. Hotel was adequate though pricey. Wouldn't rush back.
Spent a fantastic couple of days at the Belton Woods Hotel and can thoroughly recommend it. The green fees quoted are still wrong - £40 and £35 for the two 18hole courses. I've only been playing for a couple of years, so my standard of golf is not brilliant, but not too bad. Started on the Red Arrows 9hole par3. A very tricky par 3 too, for a warm up course, with water coming into play on a couple of holes. Of the two main courses - I found The Woodside is the more forgiving of the two and good for confidence building. The Lakes is tighter and as the name indicates, there are plenty of water obstructions that really tests out your accuracy and punishes anything that goes astray. The Lakes 18th has a carry over water to a green just in front of the 19th. Nice.
played the course in March after some dreadfull weather which caused havoc with the course. Some nice holes but not very challenging,wide open fairways ,some nice holes and views.Very friendly in the hotel and made very welcome with all the facilities you would expect from a de vere run hotel. to be honest just a little dissapointed with the courses.
Green fees shown are not correct as per information gained on Monday 30th September 2002, we were quoted £30 and £35 with no day tickets that could have allowed play on both courses. Woodside preferable to the Lakes if only for the views you gain when playing the early holes and when playing 10 and 11 looking back to the chalets and you realise you have walked miles! Spent a very enjoyable 2 days ovenight Sunday playing 2 well laid out courses. Basically the layout was good, the views better, the accommodation very good, food acceptable but take out - not a second - but a third and fourth new mortgage if you want to enjoy a drink here. Very expensive in the bars.
Had 2 very enjoyable rounds on the Woodside. Course is quite open so had to contend with a strong wind which added to the difficulty. Best holes are 7th (par 5), 17 (short par 4)and 18 (par 5). Pond across middle of 17th fairyway tests strategy off the tee, lay up or go for it. Lay up resulted in par each time! 10th was tough par 4 into headwind. Overall a good test for all handicap levels. Look forward to returning to take on the Lakes course. Sunday driver for 2 of us was excellent value (DB&B, 2 rounds).
Two excellent long courses, well able to challenge the low handicap golfer, and of course a difficult day out for the novice, no handicap cert required even for the Lakes championship course. Courses in excellent condition, even for this time of year, can't wait until spring proper.
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