Posts tagged Portugal
Reopening Quinta do Lago North Course
The eyes of the European golf industry are set to be on Quinta do Lago in October when it unveils its eagerly-awaited totally revamped North Course – predicted to become one of the new stars of European golf.
Redesigned by renowned American architect Beau Welling in close collaboration with European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, the new layout has been built to the highest specifications with a €9.6m investment programme and is in line to become the new number one course at the prestigious family resort.
The North Course has been redeveloped with the emphasis firmly on precision and strategy. While many modern-day developments tend to focus on length, Welling and McGinley have been keen to design a golfing experience where accuracy and course management are the key factors, and a course that is playable and fun for golfers of all abilities.
Welling, who has worked on more than 90 projects worldwide, said: “We have kept the routing of the North Course intact, but we have totally reworked the golf experience within the existing corridors. Specifically, we have worked very hard to make the experience more playable for higher handicappers while at the same time created precise target areas for the better player looking to score.
“Paul has been great to work with. He is very passionate about golf in general, but he has a particular and keen interest in Quinta do Lago.
“We quickly realised we were very much “aligned” in terms of what we wanted to see happen with the improvements to the North Course, so collaboration has been easy. We both put a big premium on playability, but also in asking golfers to use their creativity when approaching a shot. The new experience of the North Course is going to require strategic thinking and have a lot of shot values, no doubt a big imprint of Paul’s influence.”
Among the changes introduced on the 6,776-yard course which has been closed since last December, all greens, tees, bunkers, irrigation, drainage systems and cart paths have been rebuilt using the latest state-of-the-art technology, with four sets of tees introduced on each hole to accommodate players of all levels.
With the existing turf on all tees, fairways and greens having been stripped back, the final figures for completing such an ambitious project make impressive reading, with 379,800 tonnes of earth moved on site during the redevelopment.
An amazing 93.5km of new piping has been fitted on the redeveloped layout while the wide range of different jobs that have been carried have included:
- Stripping existing grass
- Sand extraction
- Rough shaping
- Lake installation
- Drainage installation
- Irrigation installation
- Golf features construction
- Cart path installation
- Final grading
- Sand capping
- Final preparation and floating
- Sod fairways and tees
- Seed roughs and greens
- Grow in
- Environmental management
While the routing of the course has not changed, Quinta do Lago has addressed golf course strategy to make the par-72 layout significantly more playable for all golfers, while still being a challenging test for the better players.
A low-cut Bermuda grass approach has been introduced around greens to create a myriad of recovery shot options for increased satisfaction on all levels of play. The aesthetics of the golf course have also significantly improved through the introduction of a cool season rough grass and the select planting of native grasses and specimen trees to help the environment.
The renovation has also allowed Quinta do Lago to further reduce the impact on the environment by using recycled water and solar energy to maintain the course. The reduction of grassed areas will lessen the impact on the environment and the new design will include the creation of some new animal and plant habitats.
John Dwyer, chief executive of Quinta do Lago, said: “I think people will be blown away by the North Course. It is going to be very different but very playable and a real challenge, and it will be one that members and visitors will want to play again and again.
“We have focused on building a course that will be the best presented in Europe once it opens and we couldn’t be happier with the work that has taken place.”
Set amongst 2,000 acres of the picturesque Ria Formosa Natural Park, Quinta do Lago is one of the most highly regarded golf and residential developments in the Algarve since opening in 1972. Located just 15 minutes from Faro airport, the resort offers residents and guests an unparalleled location benefiting from a year-round temperate climate, a variety of lifestyle pursuits and a strong sense of community.
Since its inception, Quinta do Lago has been at the forefront of European golf with three 18-hole championship courses – Quinta do Lago North and South courses and Laranjal – matched by outstanding practice facilities at the Paul McGinley Academy and the new Taylor Made Fitting Centre, which gives golfers the chance to enjoy the ultimate club-fitting experience by providing them with the tools and techniques used by professionals on tour.
Away from the fairways, the resort’s extensive leisure facilities guarantee there is plenty to keep everyone occupied with events, tennis, cycling and water sports just some of the activities available.
Quinta do Lago’s stunning location by the beach offers the perfect place to relax and unwind while the resort’s wide array of restaurants, both formal and informal, take advantage of the fresh Mediterranean produce that the region has become famous for.
Be one of the first to play the Quinta Do Lago North course with Quality Golf Destinations
5* Algarve Sunday Special offer
Come and play at San Lorenzo this September and stay for 3 nights at the wonderful 5* Hotel Dona Filipa with this great Algarve Sunday Special offer.
San Lorenzo is one of the most exclusive private members golf clubs in Portugal’s Algarve. Combine this with the newly refurbished Hotel Dona Filipa you have a truly five star short golf break this September. Arrivals must be on either a Sunday or Monday through out September to qualify for this Algarve Sunday Special offer.
3 nights twin/double share in a Classic room
With daily breakfast at the 5* Hotel Dona Filipa
Free daily round of golf at San Lorenzo Golf Club
Golf transfers via hotel shuttle bus
Price: £285 pp
From 1st September to 30th September 2013
Single Supplement: £200 per person
Upgrade to Superior room with sea or pool view: £20 per room per night
Prices include accommodation in a classic room with breakfast buffet,
Minimum 3 nights break, arrival must be on a Sunday or Monday
International flights not included.
Hotel Dona Filipa & San Lorenzo Golf Resort
Magnificently located overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Dona Filipa & San Lorenzo Golf Resort welcomes guests of all ages with a touch of glamour combined with an essence of true quality. This Portugal Hotel offers 154 rooms and suites uniquely complimented by professional staff that value the true notion of personalised service.
Dona Filipa Hotel provides guests with a vast variety of services and facilities, the prides itself in its excellent service and tries to exceed each and every guests’ expectation from the moment of reservation to the last minute of check-out. The Hotel’s swimming pool area, with mesmerizing views to the Atlantic Ocean, is the ideal place, not only for a tan, but to read a book, relax or simply have a drink or snack.
Dona Filipa & San Lorenzo Golf Resort caters for tennis enthusiasts as well as golfers with three ATP floodlit all weather hard surface tennis courts. It also has an exclusive area and Beach Club on the Vale do Lobo beach for hotel guests, situated a mere 200 metres away. Dona Filipa Hotel provides guests with 2 alternatives desiring a stay orientated to relax, revitalize and unwind: our in-house facility; the Estetica or access to the Vale do Lobo Royal Spa
For reservations please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01782 510800
Please quote “Sunday Special 2013” Offer with any correspondence.
Lisbon Golf Special offer
Come and play Ribagolfe I & II this Autumn
European Tour Qualifying School Stage 1 venue
Ribagolfe is a 36-hole golf resort 20 minutes south of Lisbon and offers two great championship golf courses. Ribagolfe is one of Portugal’s golf’s hidden gems, This Lisbon Golf Special offer is a great price and you will not be disappointed with the courses as they are always in superb condition. Staying a few minutes drive away at the 3* hotel Alfoz in Alcochete, the hotel offers comfortable accommodation with views across the Rio Tejo to Lisbon. Alcochete offers plenty of well priced restaurants and bars but is still only a short drive across the Ponte Vasco da Gama Bridge to access Lisbon town centre and the Airport.
For group booking we have the added bonus of 1 in 8 going FREE.
Each day of golf you also get lunch free at the Ribagolfe Clubhouse.
Free lunch every day at the Clubhouse
From 1st September to 31st October 2013
Supplement for single occupancy: £49 per person
Prices include accommodation, breakfast buffet, lunch at the Clubhouse and
3 nights break from Thursday to Sunday;
All groups have 1 free in 8 players;
All groups have 10% discount at ALFoz restaurant;
For reservations please contact: email@example.com or call 01782 510800
Please quote Lisbon Golf Special Offer with any correspondence.
International Golf Travel Market – Vilamoura Nov 2012
Newsletter December 2012
International Golf Travel Market or IGTM as it is normaly known as is the annual must do show for all golf travel professionals. This year’s show was held in Vilamoura and was attended by Rachel and Neil. Many people think it is just another jolly for us so we thought we would share with you a little of what goes on at these events and what we got up to during the week.
Day 1 – The Golf Tournament and Welcome Reception
We were very lucky to be playing the Oceanic Victoria course which had hosted the Portuguese Masters just 3 weeks earlier. It is not a course we had played before and we always like to have first-hand experience of the courses we send our clients to so a good opportunity. If you are ever in Vilamoura it is one of the must play courses. There is a lot of water and the rough is very rough but it is a great layout and although there had been a lot of rain in the weeks leading up to our visit it was in great condition. We did okay although we didn’t win anything but it was a great start to what we knew would be a very busy week. (Those tiny people in the picture are Neil and I!!) In the evening there was reception for 1200 people at theTivoliMarinaHotel. It was a great evening and we caught up with some old friends and made some new, very useful, contacts. There is always a new hotel or golf course to find out about and meeting the representatives face to face always makes it easier to do business with them.
Day 2-4 – Meetings, Meetings, Meetings
During IGTM 2012 there were 11,500 scheduled meetings between exhibitors and buyers and many more impromptu meetings. We both had over 40 meetings scheduled during the 3 days and talked to many hotels, golf courses and ground handlers. Our intention is always to offer new and exciting destinations to our clients and all these meetings gave us a great opportunity to investigate what is new in the golf travel market. We also had meetings with destinations we are familiar with to discuss new offers and packages they have to offer. There were so many destinations present at the show it would be impossible to visit them all but we certainly had a good try! The days were long and tiring and we walked for miles between our many meetings but it was a great show for us and we returned home armed with lots of information and new ideas.
Outside all the meetings there was also a lot of networking and socialising going on. Many of the best meetings were held over a beer in the bar! IAGTO (International Association of Golf Tour Operators) sponsored a bar on the Tuesday evening which was a superb night. The bar was across theMarinafrom the main show hotel and was rather a long walk although only about 200 yards as the crow flies. Somebody had thought of everything and there was a catamaran which sailed back and to all evening so we didn’t even have to walk. What a great way to go to the pub!
The final evening of IGTM was the IAGTO annual awards dinner where awards are presented to the best golf destinations around the world. The winners included Dubai, Gran Canaria, Vietnam and the Dominican Republic. The final award of the evening is the Honorary Award which this year was presented to Tony Jacklin, the most successful Ryder Captain in history, who was present to receive his award and was greeted with a standing ovation by the 1200 people present at the dinner. It was brilliant to see one of Europe’s great honoured by the golf industry. After the dinner there was a party at the Casino in Vilamoura which was attended by many of the people who had attended the dinner and was a fantastic end to what had been a tiring, busy, enjoyable and very worthwhile week for us.
Please keep an eye on our website as there will be lots of new deals and offers coming up as we follow up all the contacts we made in Vilamoura.
Post IGTM Special offer –
Play one of Lisbon’s best kept secret – Ribagolfe – A European tour qualifying school stage 1 venue since 2009. 36 holes of superb quality golf only 30 minutes from the centre of Lisbon.
Enjoy a weekend break Thursday – Sunday 3 nights B&B at the 3 star Alfoz hotel and 3 rounds of golf for only
£151 per person
Offer valid for travel until 31/3/2012
Group special – 1 in 8 go free
Call Rob or Rachel on 01782 510800 for special offers and prices or email firstname.lastname@example.org
August Special Offer
Fed up with the English summer this year
Escape the rain and Golf in Portugal
Aroeira Golf Apartments, Lisbon & Aroeira Golf I & II
7 nights in Self Catering apartments, unlimited green fees at Aroeira Golf (36 holes)
Daily breakfast in Clubhouse, weeks car hire from Lisbon Airport
2 people in 1 bed Apartment – from £ 390 /person
4 people in 2 bed Apartment – from £ 340/person
Additional Golf at other local courses is also available on request.
Non-Golfer prices available. International Flights are not included in package.
2 Share 4 Share
September £545 £490
October £575 £515
November £495 £445 (1 – 15th)
Nov/December £390 £340 (16 – 31st)
Prices per person
Aroeira Golf Apartments
Set in a magnificent pinewood, with a view of the course, 1 and 2 bed roomed Villas Aroeira offers a pleasant stay in self catering accommodation, with easy access to the golf courses. In the summer the club offers transfers to the golf courses.
Located 25 km south of Lisbon, on the coast adjacent to a long stretch of beach. The site, Herdade da Aroeira is fully ring fenced with 24-hour security service 7-days a week. The apartments are 2 to 4 km from Aroeira I golf course and look over Aroeira II course. At the centre of the Golf Club sees a friendly clubhouse with restaurant, snack-bar, reception, golf shop and golf school, cafeteria, tropical swimming pool with bar and 4 tennis courts.
Aroeira Golf Courses
Set in a pine wood with several lakes, and benefiting from a microclimate that allows you to play golf all year round, the AROEIRA I and II golf courses offer players of all levels a stimulating and varied challenge.
This 18-hole course was designed by architect Frank Pennink and opened in 1973. Specialists say it is one of the best in Europe and it hosted the Portuguese Open in 1996 and 1997 and a number of Ladies Opens.
6044m (white tees) 5148 (red tees) Par 72
Aroeira’s second 18-hole golf course, Aroeira II was opened in April 2000. Its architect, Donald Steel, took care to comply with European Tour recommendations and designed a course with future Portuguese Opens in mind. Its 18 long greens wind round 5 lakes and the various tees for each hole mean it can be played by players of all levels. For a number of years it has hosted the Qualifying School of Ladies European Tour and several Portuguese Ladies Opens.
6367m (white tees) 4605 (red tees) Par 72
To book or for more information call – 01782 510800 or email email@example.com
5 STAR SPECIAL OFFER
Le Meridien Penina Golf & Resort
20 % Discount off Normal prices
Free Room Upgrade
NOW ONLY £ 455 p/p
Based 7 Nights B&B twin share in a classic room, including daily golf as listed and private airport transfers. (Flights not included)
Valid for new bookings during April, May & June*
*(No room upgrade available 15-23 June)
Must be booked before April 15th 2012
Single Supplement £40 per night
Golf included in Package
April – 4 rounds on Sir Henry Cotton Championship course, 3 rounds on Resort course
May & June – Daily rounds on the Championship & Resort courses
*Golf must be pre booked
To book please quote “Penina Blasting Offer” Contact Quality Golf Destinations by phone on 01782 510800 or email
We are often asked by clients who love the Algarve to offer an alternative venue for their winter golfing break. Fans of Portugal are drawn back year after year to the Algarve with its excellent beaches, great climate and of course an unbelievable range of golf courses, but if you ask any Portuguese if the Algarve is a fair reflection of there country they will say no!
With that in mind we decided that in 2011 the Lisbon area ofPortugal would be added to our ever growing list of destinations. Lisbon,Portugal’s capital is a fascinating city in its own right (which will be covered in a newsletter very soon) but our focus was on the Estoril golf coast. This region covers the seaside towns of Estoril and Cascais and the hillier inland region of Sintra. The country side in this region is both varied and spectacular from Cascais wind swept dunes to Sintra’s forested hills, valleys and villages. The region has been populated for 1000’s of years and the diversity in the towns span back to historical eras of the Romans, Moorish and Medieval Portuguese. All this set only 30 minutes drive from downtown Lisbon.
The Seaside towns of Cascais and Estoril are iconic Portuguese resorts which are also the homes of many of the wealthier Lisbonites with some of the most expensive real estate in the area being housed on the coastal roads. From Estoril’s famous Casino (the original inspiration for Ian Flemings Casino Royal) to the Marina of Cascais there is as much “chic” found here as the South of France or the more fashionable resorts on the Costa del Sol. A huge selection of Bars and Restaurant line the streets many overlooking the sea and with the towns not being totally dependent on the tourist trade many stay open all year to cater for the locals with inside seating for the winter period. The Seafood restaurants in the coastal towns will not disappoint but if you would like some fine dinning try the restaurants at the Penha Longa resort as it houses the best Japanese restaurant in Portugal “Midori” and a Michelin 2* restaurant “Arola” both are advisable to make a booking before you travel the 7km from the coast. If you are a wine buff try the wines from the local vineyards in any of the restaurants, much of the Portuguese wines are kept for the home market so trust your waiter and you will find some great wines at very reasonable prices.
The choices for accommodation in the region are vast, from self catering apartments overlooking the golf courses, Luxury 5* resorts and great value tourist hotels in the resort towns. On our visits to the region we have stayed and visited a great variety of hotels and apartments all have been of excellent standard. Whatever you require the area has the range of accommodation to meet the most demanding needs or budget.
Eight great courses at seven locations make up theEstorilGolfCoast. All are located within a short drive of each other and the courses are well signposted and easy to find. Roads in the region are modern and well maintained, although some are toll roads the fees are very reasonable (1.25 euro) and the benefits of using the toll roads outweigh the charges. The professional tours have visited many of the courses in the region. Three have hosted the Portuguese Open but can still be played without breaking the bank, indeed one of the best way’s to play the region is with the Estoril Golf Coast passport which allows either 5 or 3 days unlimited golf on seven different courses at discounted rates. The only course not on the passport is the superb Oitavos Dunes. We have included a brief overview of the courses below:
Belas Clube de Campo
Situated north west of Lisbon this championship course undulates along scenic valleys with panoramic views around the course, Belas is acknowledged as one of Portugal’s best constructed layouts measuring 6270m from the back tees the par 72 demands both skill and tactical play.
Golf Do Estoril
The oldest course in the region and has hosted the Portuguese Open 20 times as well as many other professional and amateur events. The course has a reputation of always being in immaculate condition with a friendly clubhouse and bar. With views of theAtlantic Oceanand Estoril this par 69 5313m course is a gem to play, not the longest but then size is not always the best judge of quality.
Lisbon Sports Club
The Lisbon Sports club was originally formed in 1922 with a nine hole layout, the club moved to its present location in 1964 and for many years was only a 14 hole course, this was rectified in 1992 when the final four holes were completed. The course is said to have a Scottish feel to it as its 18 holes are accompanied by a narrow winding brook through beautiful green pine woodland. Not a long course by modern standard but one a visiting golfer will enjoy. Par 69 5285m.
Overlooking the Atlantic near the town of Cascais, Oitavos dunes is one of the regions golfing jewels. Listed in the world’s top 100 courses by Golf magazine the US PGA official magazine, and the only listed course in Portugal is currently the home of the Portuguese open. As well as a world class course the complex also boasts excellent practice facilities, a five star hotel and a top class restaurant/clubhouse. Its par 71 stretches 6303m from the back tees, a real test when the wind blows.
Penha Longa Hotel & Golf Resort
A 27 hole Golf complex, the 9 hole Monastery course and Championship 18 hole Atlantic course.
Host of the Portuguese Open on three occasions, this great course is played through the valleys of the Sintra hills. There are times when you could be forgiven in thinking you were playing a course in the Alps instead of Portugal with its Pine tree lined fairways and raised teeing grounds, water comes into play on a number of holes and position off the tee is key to scoring well. 6313m from the championship tees Par 72.
This course spreads around the historical heart of the resort and is a perfect complement to theAtlantic. Ideal for guests who arrive in the late afternoon but who would still like to play a round of golf. Par 70 5176m
Quinta Da Marinha Golf
The beautifully maintained course was designed by Robert Trent Jones jnr. It offers a great challenge along its umbrella pine lined fairways, crossing 3 large lakes and the occasional ravine; players are consistently made to think off the tee. Although the course measures 5870m in its par 71 it has 6 par 3’s that require precision off the tee.
Pestana Beloura Golf
The verdant foothills of the Sintra Mountains offer a breathtaking backdrop for the Quinta da Beloura Golf Course that will stretch both player’s imagination and ability while providing an enjoyable challenge to golfers of all levels. 5846m Par 73.
Costs of playing in the region vary depending on the season you travel, indeed one of the best way’s to play the region is with the Estoril’s Golf Coast passport which allows either 5 or 3 days unlimited golf on seven different courses at discounted rates. The only course not on the passport is the superb Oitavos Dunes.
As a rule the prices are similar if not slightly cheaper than theAlgarve, what you will find is less congested courses and with the quieter courses you can expect an excellent standard of course condition.
Quality Golf Destinations Recommendations for the Area
There are two main ways to play the region. The first is to base your self on one of the golf resort complexes such as Penha Longa, Pestana Sintra or Belas and enjoy reduced green fees in either the resorts hotels or apartments while still only being a 10 – 20 minute drive from the resort towns and beaches. The second is to be based in or around the resort towns Cascais or Estoril. 3 courses Quinta da Marinha, Golf do Estoril and Oitavos Dunes are close to town and take only a few minutes to transfer to by taxi and give the flexibility of the town’s nightlife in the evenings. Both Cascais and Estoril have a great selection of hotels and apartments to suit all budgets. Either way the one thing we can guarantee is a great golfing holiday in a beautiful region of Portugal, whether it is a short winter sun break or a longer summer holiday we believe you will not be disappointed.
If you would like more information about the region please give us a call on 01782 510800 and ask for Rachel, Rob or Neil. Alternatively email Rachel@qualitygolfdestinations.com
5 * Penha Longa Golf Resort – Estoril, Portugal
5 nights B & B – unlimited golf on 9 hole Monastery course, 6 days car hire or Private airport transfer, Dinner in hotel on 1st night.
5 night’s Half Board – unlimited golf on 9 hole Monastery, 2 Rounds on Championship Atlantic course, 6 days car hire or Private airport transfer.
- Accommodation and car hire use based on twin share.
- Not included – international flights.
Valid only for holidays booked for the period 1st OCTOBER – 31st OCTOBER 2011
• Supplement double for single use per night: £55
•Offer on request and subject to availability of the Hotel and Golf Course
•Additional Golf at other local courses can be booked at additional cost
•Private car transfer to resort instead of car hire can be substituted
•Half board is based on our Chef’s Daily Suggestion at Restaurants “AssaMassa”, “Midori” or “Arola”. Beverages not included. Please note that options are subject to schedules and opening hours of restaurants.
To book please ring Rachel or Rob on 01782 510800 or email Rachel@qualitygolfdestinations.com