The Ryder Cup is going to France in September 2018, but Augerville Castle and Golf Resort is already ready to welcome all golf players! – Meanderings through France n° 134
By Annick Dournes and Frédéric de Poligny
In less than one year, from September 28 to 30, the iconic Ryder Cup will take place in France at the “Golf National” in St Quentin en Yvelines (78). This golf tournament is the third world sport event in term of media coverage after the FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games.
France also is a golf country. The very first continental European golf course was created in Pau, in Southwest France, at the end of the Napoleonic Wars by British officers (of course!) of Wellington’s army. And if unfortunately you are not one of the twelve European players selected for the European team who will play against the US team at the 2018 Ryder Cup, you can enjoy hitting this capricious little white ball with your own clubs on a fantastic French golf course not too far from Paris.
If you want to enjoy the spirit of good golf game in a beautiful countryside landscape surrounded by a seemingly untouched nature, get to Augerville Castle and Golf Resort. The golf course winds peacefully between hills and forest, following from time to time a little river adding hard time and fun to the players.
Augerville Castle is a 4-star golf & spa hotel, 53 miles away south of Paris, set in a 250 acres estate where deer, foxes and countless birds have already chosen to live in, sharing it with golfers and walkers. Sportsmen, gourmets and epicureans find what they are looking for in this small and luxury hotel registered in the “Chateaux & Hotels Collection” guide: an 18-hole golf course, a brand new spa, a chocolate factory, a gourmet restaurant plus a brasserie, and 40 luxury rooms and suites.
Unlike many castles that have been ancestral homes for centuries, Augerville Castle has had many owners since its construction, four centuries ago: French aristocratic families, businessmen, an American billionaire and even a German chemist who built there his own laboratory until he was arrested in 1962 for… drug trafficking! A Japanese company bought it in 1990 and created the 18-hole golf course but neglected the castle.
When its present owner bought it in 1997 the roof was leaking, the original panelling were missing and many of the 15th century painted beams were in a poor state. Only the beautiful stone fireplaces were miraculously saved from destruction and have pride of place in the restaurants, the bar and most of the rooms and suites. After extensive works of restoration supervised by an architect of Historic Buildings, the castle now is a beautiful and cosy luxury hotel and the perfect place for a romantic stay, for golf lovers and a fine starting point to visit the region. Fontainebleau Royal and Imperial Castle, Milly-la-Foret, a village where Jean Cocteau had a home, Barbizon where famous landscape painters such as Corot, Millet or Rousseau created the “Barbizon School of painters” or beautiful Vaux-le-Vicomte Castle are close by and ideal excursions for historical heritage lovers.
The golf course is open to all but quite challenging. Taking advantage of the rugged terrain, the large fairways might well put the players’ nerves to the test! The ponds and the river that crosses the estate as well as the tricky bunkers and inaccessible looking greens can be frustrating but it is so delightful to conquer them! But even if you finish the course well over the par, your disappointment will be more than offset by the beauty of this golf course described as one of the most spectacular ones in France. The Troon Company has offered a partnership with Augerville Golf Club in order to welcome professional golfers during the 2018 Ryder Cup that will take place at Golf National, near Paris.
During his professional career the Chef Mickael Brinioli worked for famous chefs in several Michelin-starred restaurants such as Xavier Mathieu, Bernard Loiseau, Jean Michel Lorrain or Nicolas Sale. At 34 he is now in charge of the Augerville Castle cuisines and brilliantly demonstrates his talent and know-how. Reinventing classical recipes with a touch of inventiveness, he combines tradition and originality to make elegant and delicious dishes far from the improbable and pretentious dishes that sometimes get to our tables. Dining at the “Jacques Coeur” restaurant in a cosy atmosphere is a moment of pure pleasure.
Augerville Castle has its own chocolate factory where every year the chocolate chef turns tons of cacao paste into delicious cakes, ganache, truffles, sweets, chocolate spreads… Made with the finest ingredients they are very popular and people come from far away to buy them in the hotel shop. No need to say that wonderful chocolate desserts are served in the two restaurants!
The hotel spa opened one year ago and is dedicated to relaxation and well-being. Five beauticians certified by Carita and Decleor (two famous French cosmetic brands), take care of the hotel guests and golfers who can also relax in the “sensorial space”. Two hydro-massage spaces, a tonic corridor, a counter-current swimming area, an aqua-musical space as well as a sauna, a hammam, an ice-room and a solarium set in the veranda allow the guests to have a great time.
Far from our day-to-day stressful life, the Augerville Castle combines sport, good food, well-being and French art-de-vivre in an amazing setting and gives us the opportunity to share precious moments with our loved ones. The hotel is a one hour drive from Orly Airport and can organize a private transfer for its guests. Augerville Castle is closed for holiday season from December 22d to January 9th.
More information: http://www.chateau-augerville.com/en/
Text © Frederic de Poligny and Annick Dournes
Photos © Frederic de Poligny