Review and Rating of The National Golf Club of Louisiana in Westlake, LA
The National Golf Club of Louisiana was designed by Dave Bennet and is a joint venture with the City of Westlake and it is the newest and most affordable premier golf course in Louisiana. When we played in late 2018, the course meandered through towering strands of Louisiana soft pines and preserved wetlands with no homes lining the fairways, but The National will soon be the centerpiece of a new 600-acre master planned community in Westlake. There are five sets of tee boxes with yardages ranging from 5267 to 6946 yards which means if you pick the right set of tee boxes, play smart to avoid the 14 lakes and 80 bunkers, you’ll have an enjoyable and fun round at a very reasonable rate. The National was selected as one of “America’s Best New Courses” by Golfweek in 2011.
The TifSport fairways, which were in very good condition when we played, are ample to a little tight and they range from flat with subtle slope to gently rolling. During your round you’ll encounter some carries over water, slight dog legs, thick and dense rough that can bury your ball, strategically placed fairway bunkers, and some interesting risk-reward shots. A couple of the holes that we really liked include:
#4 is a fun and interesting 394-yard par 4 with a carry over a pond to a fairly tight fairway with water on the left side from 200 yards out. It runs along the fairway around three-quarters of the green and comes back in to pinch the fairway about 80 yards on the right front of the green. The cluster of three trees that can block the right side approach to the green is guarded with a front and back bunker – club selection and accuracy are critical for a par and you’ll need to play this hole again to master it
#5 is a very picturesque 192-yard par 3 with water along the entire left side and a raised green with 3 church pew long skinny bunkers on the left front, a hidden bunker in the back, and a small bunker on the right front
#17 and #18 are fun finishing holes and they’ll throw a lot at you – water on both sides of the fairway (tee to green on #17), well guarded green complexes, pinched fairways, and a slight dog leg left
The MiniVerde greens at The National Golf Club were also in very good condition when we played. They ran at a good speed, held the ball ok, and all had some subtle breaks. Some are raised and others are flat and perfect for a bump and run. They range in size from 24 to 42 yards deep (the average size is probably around 34 or so) and all but one are guarded by two to five bunkers.
The 80 bunkers were in also very good condition when we played. They have manageable lips and soft fluffy sand. The vast majority of the bunkers guard the green and we had no trouble avoiding the fairway bunkers.
The National Golf Club of Louisiana is home to a state-of-the-art golf academy and practice facility with over an acre of grass hitting stations, two chipping greens, 1500 square feet of sand bunkers, some grass bunkers and a 12,000 square foot practice putting green.