Golf in Marbella

Costa del Sol – Costa del Golf

The sun coast „Costa del Sol“ is one of the leading golfing regions in Europe and currently boasts 57 golf courses, so the nickname „Costa del Golf“ is not just a clever marketing but is, in fact, absolutely justified.

Best golfing weather 365 days in the year in Marbella and more than 100 golf courses in Andalucia

Best golfing weather 365 days in the year in Marbella and more than 100 golf courses in Andalucia

The biggest asset of this lovely region is a present of nature – cold polar weather fronts do not influence this, the southernmost tip of the European mainland and it is also shielded by high mountain ranges like the Sierra Nevada. Even in December and January the temperatures during the day are regularly close to 20 ° C, so that the „greens“ do not need a winter rest but flourish cheerfully on.
The green keepers of these prestigious clubs, however, also contribute greatly to the fact that the mid – European golf enthusiast can remain in training all through the winter months, and play on carefully maintained fairways. The associated top-level businesses like golf hotels, club houses, shops and restaurants, all on the highest niveau, also underline the firm roots of the sport in southern Spain.

As a recreational activity in close touch with nature the pleasure of playing golf is, of course, based on the beauty of the landscape in which the course is embedded. The „Spanish Riviera“ is almost always stands out with grandiose views of the coastal mountains and the Mediterranean and in the far west the rock of Gibraltar, rising dramatically from the sea, greets the onlooker.
Marbella is the secret golf capital
Even in classic golfing regions like Andalusia which has no less than 100 „Campos de Golf“ the courses are not evenly distributed. Apart from the newcomer area of Costa de la Luz on the Atlantic coast the focus is still concentrated on the Mediterranean Costa del Sol.

 Swimming pool in an exclusive villa in Malaga

Swimming pool in an exclusive villa in Malaga

Here again, the western sector emerges very early as the ideal ‚playground‘ – in the dryer eastern part of the sun coast between Málaga and Almería, for example, keeping respectable greens requires a lot of irrigation whilst the green keeper in the west between Málaga and Gibraltar profits from the beneficial rainfall most of the year round. It is not surprising then that the area around Marbella which, since the beginnings of tourism was always considered as having a touch of nobility, soon entered a successful symbiosis with the preferred sport of the upper classes.

Even today a lot of establishments, like the famous Club Valderrama, the Club de Golf La Reserva de Sotogrande or the Real Club de Golf Las Brisas exude a certain degree of exclusivity, and the inflated green fees or having always to be accompanied by a club member indicate that members like to stay amongst their peers. This, of course, gives the feeling of being on the same level as the international golf elite of the Ryders Cup, World Cup and other major competitions.

There are also, of course, golf courses for the general public where the green fees stay in the double-figure euro region and guests are always welcome, but even here a minimum handicap must occasionally be verified.

Always on the safe side are naturally the golf aficionados who decide on an all-round package at a golf hotel. In the 5-star Hotel Los Monteros Spa & Golf Resort, the „Golf Mile“ between Marbella and Puerto Banús it is possible, for example, to book 3 or 5 green fees for the Hotel course or an affiliated golf club and so enjoy bonus privileges at a very moderate rate.

Luxury villa in Marbella for sale

Luxury villa in Marbella for sale

The golf courses of the Costa del Sol differ not only in their degrees of exclusivity but also, of course, in their terrain and difficulty levels. The surrounding country areas are dominated by hilly courses, making the booking of a golf cart sometimes advisable, and some courses have caddies available who can be hired and will also assist the player with worthwhile ‚insider‘ tips.
The courses created by renowned landscape architects such as Robert Trent Jones and Cabell B. Robinson are naturally a bigger challenge for the hobby golfer, always including a wide range of bunkers and water obstacles which have to be mastered.
The Club Los Arqueros at Benahavís, a design though out by Severiano Ballesteros who passed away in 2011, is designated as „Seve’s revenge“ by insiders – its narrow fairways and varying differences in height are unforgiving and provide great support for the businesses of the mobile ball sellers!

The Mijas Golf Internacional near Fuengirola at least gives the choice of choosing to play at the somewhat easier „Los Lagos“ or the slightly more problematic variant „Los Olivos“.
A special feature offered by the Club de Golf Finca Cortesía near Casares is a branch of the famous Jack Nicklaus Golf Academy.
Also very attractive is the Santana Golf & Country Club at Mijas Costa, set in an avocado plantation with well-kept fairways and very moderate prices.

The generally around 6,000 metre-long 18 – hole rounds are designed for a playing time of approx. 4 – 6 hours, but also significantly shorter, 9 – hole courses can be found. In the high season during spring and autumn the courses are often fully booked and reserving a tee-off time as far in advance as possible is advisable. Generally it is possible to save money by booking on the Internet, but also getting up early and starting an „early bird“ game before 9 am is cheaper. The possibility to rent clubs, trolleys and golf carts is offered by all golf clubs, and pro – shops and good restaurants are always available, the latter usually offering not only local food but also local, ie. more moderate, prices. Bigger differences, however, are noticeable in the practise areas – although most clubs have a putting green, a driving range or practise bunkers are not always available.

Although Marbella is more British orientated the rest of the Costa del Sol is considered to be a preferred retreat for central Europeans. Do not, however, expect the service staff to have a good knowledge of German. Fluent English is a requirement for most employees, so that everyday conversation should not be a problem even without any knowledge of Spanish. Bearing this in mind, nothing should stand in the way of the desire to “have a good game!“ on Spain’s sun coast.

 

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