This week’s blog is a blog on the Orizonte Experience and the courses that the Orizonte Collection offers to keen golfers. In the Lisbon area sits the Orizonte Collection courses: Aroeira I and II, Ribagolfe I and II, Quinta do Peru and Santo Estevao. Each of these courses offers golfers something a bit different and the access to all of these brilliant courses is easy from a hotel like the Sesimbra Hotel and Spa where you can find everything you need from a hotel to base your exciting golf escape from…
The Sesimbra Hotel and Spa is a fantastic four-star hotel that boasts an excellent location just two minutes’ walk from the beach. The hotel is situated within the lovely fishing village of Sesimbra where you can find plenty to see, do, eat and drink in this lovely village. There is much to explore including the castle, the fishing harbour and the beach promenade. As the hotel is situated on the beachfront, all of the rooms boast private balconies from which you can enjoy stunning views out across the Atlantic Ocean. All of the rooms are spacious and light with all of the amenities that you would expect from a hotel of this standard including a flat-screen TV, free Wi-Fi, a safe and a minibar.
During the day, whilst you are not enjoying a round of golf on one of the fantastic Orizonte Collection golf courses, you can spend time relaxing on the beach, around the pool or in the spa. The spa offers guests a wide range of different health and beauty treatments as well as extensive facilities including a Turkish bath, a sauna, a Tropical shower and a Vertical Hydromassage.
Of course, as you are situated within the lovely village of Sesimbra, you have a variety of great bars and restaurants on your doorstep but the brilliant Aquarius Restaurant within the hotel boasts delicious Portuguese fish and shellfish dishes. The Sesimbra Hotel and Spa is a fantastic hotel and it is no surprise that we recommend this hotel as your base for your next golf escape playing the brilliant Orizonte courses.
Aroeira Golf Resort stretches over 900 acres and boasts two brilliant golf courses. Aroeira I was designed by Frank Pennink and opened in 1973, since then the course has gained a brilliant reputation and played host for the Portuguese Open in 1996 and 1997 as well as other notable events including several Ladies’ European Tour events and the prestigious European Men’s Club Trophy in 2013. The course is not long by any means as it is just over 6,000 yards from the back tees, but it is still tricky due to the narrow, tree-lined fairways and 18 different but equally exciting holes. Aroeira II was designed by Donald Steel to meet European Tour recommendations and opened in 2000. This is a much longer course at over 7,000 yards from the back tees and is made even more challenging due to there being water hazards on no fewer than nine of the holes on the course. Both of the Aroeira courses were carved through heavily wooded and gently undulating terrain and they both offer golfers of any ability a brilliant round of golf.
Ribagolfe I has been previously described as the “Valderrama of Portugal” and proves to be a stern test of golf for those with even the lowest of handicaps. However, those with higher handicaps can play from the more forward tees and have an equally exciting and challenging round of golf. The course measures 7,370 yards from the back tees and plays longer and much tighter than its sibling, Ribagolfe II. Treacherous lakes come into play during the back nine holes and these lakes can damage your scorecard heavily if you are not playing accurately and strategically. Both Ribagolfe I and Ribagolfe II were carved out within a huge cork oak forest. Ribagolfe II is a shorter course than its sibling and was designed by former Ryder Cup player Michael King. The course boasts huge and moderately contoured greens which pose a stern test to golfers of all abilities.
Quinta do Peru boasts a beautiful location as it is framed by the stunning Arrabida Natural Park. The course was designed and crafted by Rocky Roquemore and is considered to be one of the best courses in Continental Europe. The course is set within a pine forest and has the Arrabida Mountains as its backdrop which means that from any point along the course, you can have the fortune to enjoy beautiful views. This course is a serious test of golf from the back tees with its huge American-style bunkers and many water hazards, but its natural beauty can make up for a poor scorecard.
Last, but certainly not least, is the brilliant Santo Estevao course which was designed by Donald Steel and opened for play in 2004. The course is set within the rolling landscape of the Northern Alentejo region and boasts more than 7,000 yards of brilliant golf from the back tees. The course features many strategically placed bunkers and greens which means that the layout of this course will challenge golfers of all abilities but because the land is only gently undulating, you can enjoy the round on foot. Santo Estevao will provide you with a scenic and enjoyable round of golf for most months of the year due to the mild climate here.
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog and that when you are thinking about your next golf escape, remember these brilliant courses as there are very few places where you can go and stay and enjoy so many fantastic golf courses that have such high rankings.