In the second of this three part blog, Glencor Golf’s Golf Sales Executive Oliver Chalkley continues to recall his recent trip to the Algarve in December 2015 where he discovered what makes this region such a great golf holiday destination.
Day 2 began with an early start and a round of golf at Oceanico Faldo, the course is part of the Amendoeira complex comprising of 2 18 hole courses and a 9 hole par 3 course. The courses are supported by beautiful practice facilities where you are greeted by pyramids of balls and stunning green grass as far as the eye can see. Faldo a fantastic golf course, exactly what you wish for from a golfing holiday in Portugal or anywhere in the world for that matter. Stunning and vast scenery combined with absolutely perfect conditions (even in December), this is truly one of the best courses I’ve ever played. Although enjoyable the time I played, this course is certainly one that gets easier the more you play it. A few nasty bunkers are in play as well as undulating greens, meaning a bit of local knowledge goes a long way here. As you can see in the title picture, the undulations do catch you out a tad.
After our round we were treated to a tour of the grounds. The sheer size of the resort blew us away, there are an array of 2 bedroom apartments some with mezzanines that double as a third bedroom, as well as a multitude of villas which were breath-taking. If you stay in a large group you can stay in a 5 bedroom villa for less per person than a 2 bedroom apartment. These ‘superior’ villas have their own pool, several bathrooms, TV room, living room and I could go on. When we were informed that they were valued at over €1.2M we were not surprised.
We also visited the sports club here at Amendoeira, guests can enjoy use of all of the facilities including football, tennis, gymnasium and jogging track. Or if you prefer to relax you can, they have a clubhouse that is full of shirts left by the professional teams that have trained here, these include Fulham, Aston Villa and Sunderland, amongst many others, and you can have a drink and relax whilst watching sport form around the world on their many TV’s.
As well as O’Connor (which was unfortunately closed for maintenance) and Faldo, they also have a par 3 academy course on site. The course is fully floodlit and looked to be an extremely fun and exciting challenge, and one that I would recommended you try out during your golf holiday in Portugal
We then spent the rest of the day visiting the likes of Salgados, Gramacho and Vale Da Pinta. The things we took away from these were that a buggy is recommended at Gramacho whereas Vale Da Pinta is a touch flatter. Salgados is under the same ruling as Morgado and Alamos, and residents of the NAU hotels can play unlimited at all 3. We felt Salgados was a good golf course but it didn’t quite blow us away as much as Amendoeira and Gramacho did.
We then stayed in Pestana Dom Jaoa II in Alvor. We think this is a bit of a hidden gem, it offers great views over the Atlantic Ocean as well as spacious and luxurious rooms, and one I will definitely visit again. Whilst here we also stopped off at Pestana Delfim, which as with all Pestana locations so far we were very impressed with. The Delfim has its own driving range, great for golf fanatics who want to practice pre or post round and I’m sure it will also come in handy if you wish to extend the competition past 18 holes.
A quick pit stop tour around Alvor and Portimao followed, and we were impressed by both locations. A lovely marina and a lively strip were the highlights of these two great towns.
That evening we were then treated to an authentic Portuguese dining experience in the mountains, plenty of beautiful and succulent meats washed down with some wine and Super Bock, very civilised.
Knowing we had another early start in the morning we headed to bed at a ‘reasonable’ hour.
To speak to Oliver or any other member of the Glencor Golf team about a golf holiday to the Algarve call 01904 406550 now!