Glencor Golf are on the way to a new destination for us, the Costa Brava. We arrived on Wednesday night and we’re met at Barcelona airport by the driver from the local transfer company Maypal. They quickly got us underway to the city of Gerona and the four star AC Marriott hotel. The following morning we were taken to the Torremirona Golf Club north of Girona. The sky was grey and we took the chance to play a few holes in the morning whilst waiting for the rest of the group to arrive. The course was a typical resort course in very good condition. The fairways were generous and the greens firm and fast. After nine holes we called a halt for lunch in the clubhouse which was excellent and hosted by the golf manager of the Resort. Unfortunately the heavens opened and we were unable to play again however we did risk the torrential rain to drive round the rest of the course in a buggy so that we could see the rest of the course and it looked pretty good even through the pouring rain. Reluctantly we packed our clubs away and headed back to the hotel. After a few drinks we had an excellent dinner in the Hotel and retired to bed early as we had a busy day ahead of us.
The real work began the next morning where we had meetings with nearly 20 local suppliers of hotels and golf courses. There were some excellent offers and they will be available soon on the Glencor website. Following an amazing three course lunch at the hotel which only cost 15 euros we headed to the Club Golf d’Aro at Mas Nou. This was a real treat and proved to be a seriously good golf course. Apart from the challenge of a good design the course also offered some amazing views of the Mediterranean and we can thoroughly recommend it.
We then moved to our next hotel the amazing hotel Eden Roc. This is set in a truly spectacular location sitting on top of a cliff virtually surrounded by the Mediterranean. Being built on a slope means that it’s design is somewhat quirky as we soon discovered. Most receptions are on the ground floor and this looked the same here from the outside and when we checked in. The group had agreed to meet back in reception after unpacking and as we got in the lift to go down again we automatically pressed g for the ground floor. When the lift arrived there was no sign of reception . Back in the lift we tried the first floor but still no sign of reception. We split up and went down different corridors but still no sign. Back to the lift again and by pure chance we arrived on the third floor to be met by the hotel manager who found it quite amusing that travel industry professionals couldn’t find his reception. Despite this, this is a cracking hotel and the view from the dining room and the balconies is spectacular.
Back on the coach again to go to the Costa Brava golf club. This is a members golf club and as it was Saturday morning it was pretty busy. The friendly staff soon got us started and the course lived up to its reputation as it provided a challenging but very fair test of golf. The sun was shining and the terrace proved a perfect setting to have an excellent lunch before setting off to play at Golf Platja de Pals.
This is a really interesting course and the first few holes set the tone with drives needing to be threaded through tree lined fairways. Although not a long course accuracy is at a premium and it presents a era test of your ability to keep the ball in play.
After golf we set off for the Hotel Alga in Caiella de Palafrugel. This hotel has recently been renovated and the bedrooms are excellent and been cleverly modernised. It’s not hard to see why Trip Advisor reviews are so good for this hotel and it can thoroughly be recommended.
Our last day and after a short ride we arrived at Emporda golf which for me was the high point of the trip. There are two excellent courses here the Links and the Forest. As it’s name implies the links is a course you could have found by the sea in Scotland or Ireland. Instead of seeing the sea Here you have a view of the snow covered Pyrenees which provide a spectacular backdrop to a great golf course. The Forrest course is again as described. Winding its way through trees this course is very reminiscent of the great Hardelot courses in France and really is a must play. On site there is a very good 4 star Hotel with excellent facilities that would provide a great base for a golfing holiday.
In conclusion although largely unknown by British golfers the Costa Brava is a great golfing destination. With the two courses at Emporda , Golf Platja de Pals and of course the PGA at Catalunya which is now the number one course in Europe there are 4 great courses that you really should play. Add in the great food of the region and the ease and cost of flights to Girona or Barcelona and the Costa Brava is a top destination and deserves to be better visited by British golfers.