There are two ‘championship’ courses at this prestigious and historic golf club – Killeen & Mahony’s Point – both are almost identical in style and play over a similar golfing canvas.
The Killeen, host of the Irish Open on four occasions, benefits from some lovely holes early on that play by the lake and it is these that steal the show.
The rest of the course is perfectly acceptable but fails to hit the real highs, certainly if we are comparing it to some of the top Irish links courses in the region. However, as far as inland golf courses go the Killeen does tick most of the boxes.
The majority of the holes are tree-lined but not overly so relying on more sporadic, mature specimens to provide the definition. The condition was very good on my visit too.
For a course of this reputation I’m not sure the bunkering quite does enough to challenge you off the tee – there are seldom holes where you really have to think on the tee box, although being on the fairway itself is important because the semi-rough is gnarly and will take any spin you can generate off the ball.
The Killeen (par 72, 6,614 meters from the tips) was opened in the early 1970’s and was originally designed by Eddie Hackett although changes were made to the course prior to the 1991 Irish Open and furthermore in 2006.
If you only have time for one round at Killarney I would just have the Killeen ahead of Mahony’s Point but there isn’t a great deal in it.