“If profanity had an influence on the flight of the ball, the game of golf would be played far better than it is.” – Horace G. Hutchinson.
The year started with such optimism, not just a new year but a new decade, a clean slate, and a chance to finally cut our handicaps. But no sooner had 2020 begun, we were locked down due to COVID-19, the courses were closed, and dreams of playing on tour were dashed…
Finally, in mid-May, the restrictions were eased, courses were re-opened and the mad-dash to the first tee began. But what a lot of us, ourselves included, overlooked, was the rust that had set in over the 6 weeks. With courses opening before many ranges, people went straight to the course without so much as a practice swing expecting to play just as they had done pre-lockdown.
Golf is a game that takes time, both physically and mentally, and consciously we all know this…but somehow, just knowing it doesn’t help. So what can you do to mentally prepare for the course after a long time away?
Mentally, golf can be difficult. When things don’t go your way like a missed putt, or a lost ball, it’s easy to get despondent. We easily lose focus and motivation. Therefore, it is important that during these times of rust, you take particular care of yourself (mentally) on the course to avoid falling out of love with the game you’ve waited so long to play.
It’s easy for others to say, “don’t be so hard on yourself” or “just enjoy it” but how can you help yourself? Take your time, relax and reflect after each shot. If you top one 3 yards, remember it’s been a while and you haven’t been to the range. Simply reset before your next shot. Don’t sprint to the ball and try to take the paint from the ball, be realistic with what you expect to happen, or what can happen on the course.
Similarly, if you know what you want out of golf, take the time to utilise goal setting. I’m sure you’ve all heard of it, but how many know how to effectively use it to your advantage, both short and long term?
Quite simply, goal setting is the use of attainable targets to enhance motivation, performances, or both.
A golfer commonly has one, overarching outcome goal, this is your desired end performance result in comparison to another golfer, for example, bettering your playing partners on the course. To do this, there are a set of smaller, more attainable, performance goals that should be used. These are goals about your desired performance compared to your previous performances, for example, parring a hole you bogied last time.
In order to achieve these successfully, you must focus on the processes involved. These processes are entirely under your control and help you achieve both short term performance goals and your overarching outcome goals. For example, if you want to find more fairways, you would work on your driver at the range.
Utilising these goals can be a simple way of helping get back into the swing of the game you love. By setting and achieving simpler, attainable goals, you’ll break down your larger, more daunting ones, benefiting both your performances and your motivation to continue playing.
Throughout the coming months we will be providing more ways to improve your psychology both on and off the course, and hope to help you reduce your scores and increase your enjoyment.
Even if I can’t help myself…
To find out more
For more psychology resources visit psych-chek, and to learn more about the different types of goal setting this book chapter explores and breaks goals down in golf-specific settings.
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/3.jpg6861600Luke Vidlerhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngLuke Vidler2020-06-02 11:25:012020-06-04 21:00:02Getting back into the swing of things
This week’s blog is a guide to some of our best long-haul golf holidays which would be perfect for you to book now to enjoy this year. With a lack of vitamin D available right now in the UK, it is time to start thinking about where your next golf escape will be to and one of these brilliant hotels is the perfect retreat from the bad weather and into the sun…
First up we have the Arabella Hotel and Spa which boasts a fantastic location in the Cape Provinces overlooking a beautiful lagoon and surrounded by stunning lush landscape. The hotel boasts an excellent design where the classic elegance of old world style is mixed with the modern design trends and everything is very luxurious form the service to the spa to the dining options. Whilst you are here, spend time rejuvenating in the Arabella Spa which boasts everything you could need to feel completely relaxed including a sauna, a pool and an extensive list of beauty and massage treatments to choose from. If you are looking to be active, there is a fully-equipped gym and some tennis courts to play on and of course, there is the award-winning golf course onsite. After a day exploring the local area or relaxing within the hotel and playing a round of excellent golf, you can enjoy delicious cuisine and relaxing bars within the hotel that each boast stunning views. This is the perfect destination for your next golf break and it isn’t hard to see why…
Situated just six minutes’ walk from the longest stretch of white sandy beach in the stunning Belle Mare region of Mauritius is the five-star Long Beach Golf and Spa Resort. This hotel boasts excellent views and a stunning surrounding landscape comprising of a tropical lagoon with a beautiful coral landscape perfect for snorkelling and exploring! Whilst you are here, you can enjoy having three outdoor pools, an extensive spa as well as a modern fitness centre and other activities onsite including tennis, windsurfing and snorkelling in the lagoon. You are just 15 minutes’ drive from the centre of Flacq and 30 minutes’ from the brilliant Ile Aux Cerfs Golf Club and many of our packages include free golf transfers to both this course and Anahita Golf Course. Enjoy dining in one of the five restaurants which all serve delicious cuisine which has been created using fresh and seasonal ingredients before enjoying a post-dinner drink out on the terrace. This is a fantastically luxurious hotel with all of the amenities that you would want or need to have the perfect long haul golf escape.
The five-star Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel and Resort boasts an excellent location sat right on the trendy Leblon Beach in Rio’s South Zone. Whilst you are not spending time on this beautiful beach, you can relax around the pool area that has been newly designed and features a lush tropical landscape as well as a Jacuzzi which faces the brilliant ocean. Whilst you are not out playing golf or relaxing by the beach or pool, you can relax in the Shine Spa or workout in the fully-equipped gym. There are excellent dining options within the hotel as by the pool you can enjoy Casarao Restaurant where you can access a buffet at lunch but brilliant cuts of meat during dinner whilst enjoying a lovely, casual atmosphere. Alternatively, by the pool area, there is the Casa de Cachaca where you can get some great snacks and drink some classic cocktails. Within the hotel, there is the Bene Restaurant which serves delicious Italian cuisine and boasts a Dry Martini Bar and then, on the 26th floor, you can find L’Etoile which boasts panoramic views from the dining area and superb French food. With so much to do, see, eat and drink both at the hotel and within the local area, it is no surprise that we are highly recommending the Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel and Resort as your next golf break in 2018…
Last, but certainly not least, is Hyatt House Hotel which is located just five minutes’ walk from the beautiful Old Town Scottsdale. The hotel boasts a year-round outdoor swimming pool as well as a fully-equipped fitness centre for you to enjoy during your stay here. Each of the rooms is fully air-conditioned and spacious with both a seating area, dining area as well as a fully-fitted kitchen. There are other welcome amenities as well including a work desk, a and a flat-screen cable TV. There is a brilliant restaurant onsite and where you can be served breakfast, lunch and dinner but of course, as you are so close to the centre of Scottsdale, you can venture out to find many brilliant restaurants and bars to enjoy! There are many different golf courses in the local area which you can reach easily including: Talking Stick Golf Club, Las Sendas Golf Club, McCormick Ranch and McDowell Mountain. This is a great little hotel which boasts excellent facilities and the facilities for you to enjoy self-catering in your suites. Hyatt House Hotel is a brilliant destination for your next golf break to South Africa where you can find plenty of great golf, service and amenities.
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog and no matter where you are planning your next golf break to be, that you give us a call to see what we can offer you!
This week’s blog is a guide to some of the best hotels, golf courses and areas that there are on offer in Europe. We are almost halfway through January and it is time to start thinking about where your golf escape will be this year. Europe is a great place to go for your golf break with it not being too far but you can still be guaranteed of certain temperatures and climates dependent on what time of year you go which is very different from staying in the UK.
The Hotel Tivoli Carvoeiro is a fantastic five-star hotel which is situated in an idyllic location just 10 minutes’ walk from the beautiful town of Carvoeiro and overlooking the Vale Covo Beach. Each of the rooms is spacious and is decorated with an elegant contemporary design and fitted with all of the amenities that you would expect from a hotel of this standard including air conditioning, a minibar, WiFi and a TV. Although you are within such close distance of Carvoeiro where there are many bars, restaurants and shops to explore, the hotel boasts two of its own restaurants. One of the restaurants specialises in Portuguese cuisine and the “Mare Bistro” serves the freshest catch of the day every day. Whilst you are not out playing on the several golf courses that are nearby – Alamos, Morgado and Salgados, you can spend time relaxing by the hotel’s outdoor pool, venture into Carvoeiro or spend time relaxing at the Tivoli Spa. This is an excellent hotel which boasts everything that you could possibly need for a great golf break to the Algarve whether it be for a trip with a partner, friends or family.
The luxurious four-star Melia Marbella Banus is up next as a suggestion and it isn’t hard to see why. Whilst staying here, you are just one minutes’ walk from the beach and the hotel also boasts other leisure facilities including three outdoor pools, a spa which is fully equipped with a sauna, Turkish bath and hot tub as well as tennis and paddle tennis courts. Each of the 200 modern guest rooms is fully-fitted with air conditioning, a satellite TV and a private balcony from which you can enjoy beautiful views over the hotel’s surroundings. There are two excellent restaurants within the hotel which serve a wide range of different cuisines so that everyone can find something to eat and afterwards you can relax in one of the bars. As you are situated in the heart of Puerto Banus here, you will never struggle to find somewhere great to eat, drink or explore during the day or in the evenings. This is an excellent hotel and one that should be on your radar for 2018, especially as there are so many golf courses within the local area for you to play like Los Naranjos, Atalaya Old, El Paraiso, Rio Real and Santa Clara.
If you are looking for a spectacular golf course to play in 2018 then look no further than the great Crete Golf Club. The course was designed by the highly acclaimed Bob Hunt and the beautiful course is situated in a perfect location in Hersonissos which is on the outskirts of the bustling resort of Malia. With the Mediterranean landscape as its backdrop as well as the year-long warm climate and excellent facilities, it is no surprise that we are highly recommending this course for you to play this year. There is a wide range of different holes with different lengths that you will need to tackle successfully in order to score well including some technically challenging short holes and some very long power play holes. You will wind your way through rocks and ravines and get to look at some truly magnificent views of the coast and nearby mountains as you go. There is no doubt that this is an excellent course and one that is well worth a visit and if you stay at the brilliant Ikaros Beach Luxury Resort and Spa which is a five-star luxury hotel located directly on the beach then you have easy access to Crete Golf Club as it is under 20 minutes’ away.
Costa Navarino is the perfect destination for a golf holiday and it isn’t hard to see why it is on our list of recommendations when you learn that it is home to the luxurious five-star hotel as well as some of the most beautiful beaches and superb golf courses. You can reach the resort of Costa Navarino in under an hour’s drive from Kalamata International Airport where it lies in Messinia. If you choose to stay at The Westin Resort then you can enjoy a very luxurious stay with al fresco lunches, poolside refreshments and delicious cocktails in the evenings as well as many different leisure facilities including the Anazoe Spa and Thalassotherapy with an indoor pool. There are also some fantastic restaurants and bars including the Morais Restaurant and the 1827 Lounge and Bar which serves a range of aromatic teas (as well as many stronger beverages!). The on-site Dunes Golf Course is situated close to the sea and boasts a links-like feel and as you venture further inland on the course you can experience a typical Greek landscape with olive and citrus groves. The course can present golfers of all abilities with a challenge with its large undulating greens and steep bunkers that you must avoid! This is a fantastic resort regardless of which hotel and golf courses you choose to sample…
Last, but certainly not least, is the Il Picciolo Etna Golf Resort and Spa which is a lovely four-star hotel situated right at the foot of the volcano within the Mount Etna Nature Park. Whilst you are here, you can spend time soaking up the scenery with walks and exploring as you will get to see unforgettable views and scenery with vineyards, orchards and Mediterranean vegetation as well as the stunning beaches and ancient Greek ruins which are nearby. As you are located so far above sea level here (2,133 feet to be exact) there is a pleasant and cool breeze almost all year round. Whilst you are staying here, you can enjoy spending time at the wellness centre with its large swimming pool, sauna and other wellness amenities. There is so much for everyone to do here including exploring the Mount Etna National Park, trekking, mountain biking and wine vineyard tours but the best thing to do is play the excellent Il Picciolo Golf Club. The Il Picciolo Golf Club is an exciting golf course located within the Mount Etna National Park and the course winds its way through a mass of oak trees, vineyards and hazelnut trees as well as ancient lava flows which have been carved out by Mount Etna. This is an excellent hotel and golf club combination and one that you mustn’t miss out on this year.
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog and that it has sparked your interest for some of the brilliant hotels, courses and resorts that are on offer right now…
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/the-abama-golf-guia-de-isoras-beautiful-golf-course-within-fantastic-tenerife.jpg12502000Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2018-01-11 07:30:572019-12-02 16:12:15Inspiration - Europe
This week’s blog is an insider’s guide to Sicily and all of the great things it has to offer you for your next golf escape including brilliant beaches, luxurious hotels and great golf courses. Although Sicily might not be the first place that you think of when you are planning your next golf holiday, there is so much to do, see, eat and drink here that it would be a shame not to come and enjoy some of the brilliant courses that are situated here whilst taking advantage of the lovely Sicilian culture.
Il Picciolo Etna Golf Resort and Spa is a charming and beautiful four-star golf resort located right at the foot of Mount Etna and inside the Mount Etna Nature Park. As the hotel is located 2,133 feet above sea level, the hotel and its surrounding areas are kept at a lovely temperature due to the sea breeze. Whilst you are not out on the golf course or exploring the local beaches and ancient Greek ruins that are nearby you can spend your time relaxing in the resort’s comprehensive spa which boasts everything from a swimming pool to a gym to a sauna and different massage treatment rooms. The hotel’s main restaurant, La Ghiandaia serves traditional Sicilian dishes and after your game of golf you can enjoy a varied lunch menu at the club house there. This is the ideal destination for your next relaxing golf escape with beautiful surroundings, facilities, top service and the fantastic Il Picciolo Golf Club right next door.
Il Picciolo Golf Club is a brilliant golf club situated within Etna National Park. The fairways wind their way through the ancient lava flows that have been carved out by Mount Etna which makes the course truly unforgettable. Although the course is not particularly long at only 5,881 metres from the championship tees, it is filled with hazards including water and natural twists and turns as the course winds through the natural landscape. Il Picciolo is the oldest golf club on the island and boasts a tranquil atmosphere and a stunning setting with Mount Etna. the National Park as well as oak trees, vineyards and hazelnut trees lining the fairways. There are many fantastic and unique holes on this course but the signature one, without doubt, is the very short par-3 5th hole where Mount Etna is the backdrop to a three-tiered green that you can rarely score anything less than par. This is a beautiful and atmospheric golf club with a great course and a great clubhouse – one that isn’t to be passed up on when on the beautiful island of Sicily.
The five-star Verdura Resort is situated on 230 hectares of stunning Sicilian countryside and olive groves and borders 2km of golden coastline. Whilst you are here, you can enjoy the two Verdura courses, relax on the hotel’s private beach, swim in the infinity pool or take advantage of the extensive spa and wellness facilities – this hotel truly has it all. The spa boasts four thalassotherapy pools as well as a range of different massages and treatments available and there is also a fully-equipped gym and running trails as well as two tennis courts if you are looking to exercise beyond the golf courses. All of the rooms here feature their own private balconies from which you can see out across the hotel’s stunning surroundings and some of the rooms even have their own private courtyard and terrace which overlook the Mediterranean Sea. For dining and drinking, the resort’s restaurants and bars serve a variety of different cuisines and there is always somewhere that you can find a cold beverage or two! If you are looking for a luxurious golf break then there is no place more suited to you than the Verdura Resort.
The Verdura Golf Resort boasts two courses – the East and the West. The East Course has been designed impeccably to provide you with an unforgettable round of golf whilst you can still see out across the Sicilian coastline. The wind is always a huge factor on gameplay on this course which can make it especially difficult to score well, particularly when there are many strategically placed bunkers and a few water features lying in wait to catch errant shots. This is a great course with a very interesting design and some spectacular views. The resort’s West Course boasts a more traditional layout and whilst you play you can experience some incredible but different backdrops including an old railway line, the countryside, the Mediterranean and the coastline all in one round. These courses are ones that you must play and are fantastic additions to the already brilliant Verdura Resort…
Last, but certainly not least, is the five-star Donnafugata Golf Resort and Spa which is nestled in the South East of Sicily in one of Sicily’s most fascinating regions. The resort is a golfer’s paradise with two brilliant golf courses on site as well as shuttle buses in the summer to the resort’s private beach area and there are two bars and three restaurants on site. Aside from the resort’s extensive golf facilities, there is a fully-equipped gym and spa where there is a sauna, a steam bath and an indoor pool. Both and airport and nearby city Ragusa can be reached by car in under 30 minutes’ drive from the resort. This is a very luxurious resort with some great facilities and you will always experience excellent service. Another destination that is perfect for your next luxury golf escape to Sicily…
There are two courses at the Donnafugata Resort – the North Course and the South Course. The North Course was designed by Gary Player and is a challenging and fun course for golfers of all abilities. The course blends effortlessly into its natural surroundings and carob and olive trees line the fairways. This is a stunning course with some interesting natural features for you to see along the way. The South Course is the Links course and is entirely different to the North Course which means that whilst you are here you can truly sample the best of both worlds. This course is very close to the sea so there is always wind present which makes it hard to score well, especially when there are artificial lakes lying in wait for any shots that are even slightly off target! This is the perfect course if you are looking for a thrilling golf course. Make sure that the Verdura Resort and its fantastic golf courses are in your mind next time you are contemplating booking your next golf break…
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog and that you will consider Sicily as the destination for your next golf escape with its fantastic weather, culture, food, drink, hotels and golf…what more could you need?
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Verdura-Resort-18th-Hole-East-Course.jpg8811600Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2017-09-21 07:30:362019-05-24 08:51:49Insider's Guide to Sicily
In January I was invited to join a small party on a golf focused educational trip touring the southern-most coast of Africa from Cape Town via the Garden Route to Port Elizabeth. The invitation was accepted for mid-April. My first visit to Cape Town in (too) many years and my first as a pretty average 18 handicapper.
Since there is such a wide variety of carriers that service this route I began, as all should do, by looking at my flight options, i.e. routing, timings, and costs. The only carrier that flies direct into Cape Town direct – and they know it, are British Airways from Heathrow; their fair came in at just shy of £1,000. Convenient – yes, expensive – most certainly. So indirect it was and since I live near Gatwick my next thought was Emirates via Dubai. Bingo! The timings were great, with good connections, and the fare…just £445, and they allow you to take 30kgs of checked luggage in two bags; so my golf clubs could come with me. Why so much BA? And why only 23kg of checked luggage?
The flight out was on one of Emirates new A380’s, a really comfortable plane and great in-flight entertainment. Food – the usual. The flight from Dubai to Cape Town was on an A320, so not as good as the A380, but as I slept most of the way – it did its job and arrived on time.
Cape Town International was rebuilt for the 2010 Football World Cup and is a friendly easy-to-navigate point of arrival.
I was met by the Adam, the MD of Gilt Edge – the arrangers of the trip – and taken to my overnight hotel – the Cape Milner; a contemporary boutique hotel in the quiet suburb of Tamboerskloof, just to the south-east of Signal Hill and a 10 minute drive to the V&A Waterfront. The room was large and well equipped with a great en-suite behind glass walls.
After a quick shower and a quick beer (obligatory), we drove to the V&A and met up with my host (Warren) and the other participants on the trip. Certainly an eclectic mix, one Czech, one Dutch, a
Finn and me. They would turn out to be superb company and to each bring something different to the group. A lovely fish supper was had in heart of the Waterfront, which has seen a massive amount of development and is now a vibrant place with a real ‘buzz’ about it.
After breakfast, our itinerary showed a surprise activity for half an hour; it had to be Table Mountain – didn’t it? How wrong was I, as we pulled up outside the reception area for NAC Helicopters. What a way to start the trip – a 15 minute flight to view the City from the clear blue skies. It’s a great way to get to understand the layout of Cape Town, the views are spectacular and it’s not that expensive. NAC Helicopters also offer 30 minute and 1 hour excursions in 3, 4 and 6 seater aircraft.
It was time to leave central Cape Town for our first round of golf (one of six on the trip) at Steenberg Golf Club in Tokai at the back end of Table Mountain and the Twelve Apostles. The course is located on the Steenberg Estate, which has a long and esteemed history and now offers stylish accommodation in Cape Dutch style white washed and thatched buildings in the grounds of the old Manor House, all set within one of the oldest vineyard in South Africa. And yes their Merlot is awesome!
The course is within a parkland setting and despite the South Africans love of bunkers, it’s a playable course for most handicaps and great way to settle yourself into a golf holiday in South Africa, before you take on the challenge of the tougher courses you’ll experience. I managed to avoid a bunker until the 16th and water until the 18th. The odd par here and there and I sat in the clubhouse with a glass in hand feeling happy with my first outing.
Our overnight accommodation was at the Steenberg Hotel & Spa, a classically stylish property located between the course and the winery. We ate in the stylish and elegant the Catharina’s Restaurant in the old barn – the service was exemplary and the food exquisite.
Another beautiful day dawned and following a Cape Malay omelette and strong coffee, we headed first up to the winery, where you can a have a tour, a sundowner or a full meal overlooking the vines and the mountains beyond before driving down to the district of Newlands situated at the back of Table Mountain where we visited the Vineyard Hotel. Set in 7 acres of parkland the hotel offers 208 en-suite bedrooms in a variety of grades of rooms, suites and cottages. Its location is ideal for those who want to stay neither in the heart of Cape Town nor in the winelands, yet close to both. Excellent coffee as well.
Leaving Cape Town behind us we drove towards the winelands town of Paarl and to Pearl Valley, home to Jack Nicklaus’s Championship Signature Course. Unlike my round at Steenberg, I found a bunker off the first tee and many more on my way round. Actually, it may have taken me until the 17th before I didn’t hit sand somewhere on each hole. It just seemed as if Jack knew where my ball was going to land and put a bunker there for me!
The accommodation at Pearl Valley is not yet officially open but is of a high standard and consists of self-catering suites set in small blocks of 8 rooms just behind the practice green. If you do not want to self-cater, the clubhouse offers a range of meals, but a full service restaurant it is not.
The sun was again in full attendance as we hit the road again leaving Cape Town behind us as we drove to the quaint wine-lands village of Franschoek (‘French Corner’). The village (it’s really a little too small to call it a town) is nestled between hills on three sides giving it an Alpine feel, and consists of a few top quality properties (e.g. Le Quartier Francais and Leeu House) and some beautiful vineyards. It’s ideal if you’d like a Cape winelands experience without the masses…for a few days…
From there we crossed over a mountain pass, with a magnificent view back over Franschoek and its vineyards, and dropped down (eventually) onto the N2, which runs along the length of the south coast through George, Knysna and Port Elizabeth before turning north along the Indian Ocean coast of KwaZulu Natal passing Durban. It eventually runs out of tarmac at near Johannesburg; a distance of some 1,400. It’s quite some road.
Our next stop was game reserve on the outskirts of Mossel Bay called Gondwana. Having travelled widely on safari in Southern Africa I was a little concerned that the experience would fall far short of my previous experiences. How wrong I was to be proved…
We had barely cleared the two wildlife security gates for the short drive to the Kwena Lodge, when we spotted some shapes just below the crest of a hill some 1,000 yards away. The call went up ‘ellies’ but they were too small and not moving like elephants. Rhino? We got closer, yes five white rhino were ambling gently down the track towards us. Warren wisely pulled to the side of the road, turned off the engine and we sat as they walked up to the vehicle and then past us, almost within touching distance. A great introduction to Gondwana!
Our accommodation was a three bedroom house, a short distance from the main lodge – perfectly walkable but this is Africa so you don’t. Over the two game drives we came across elephants, rhino, a pride of lion and several different antelope species. The experience is a little ‘canned’ but in the context of the Garden Route golf & safari holiday, juts perfect for first-timers to Africa.
Following our early morning game drive and yes, with the sun shining yet again, we bade farewell to Gondwana and drove the short distance down to Mossel Bay and Pinnacle Point Golf Club (Par72, 6,460 yarsd). Set on the edge of the cliffs, with the next landmass south being Antartica, I had identified the course as likely to be a challenge with seven holes teeing off alongside the cliffs or over the sea between the ‘pinncle’ of land jutting out to sea. Sadly, I was right. The course got into my head and a simple shot to a Par 3 became a nerve-racking shank into the ocean far below. So unnecessary!
The course is amazing and the 18th one of the best I have ever played. This course kept on giving right to the end. In my view, it’s a MUST play course when you’re in this part of the world.
From Pinnacle Point we had an hour’s drive to get to Herold’s Bay and Oubaai Hotel Golf & Spa for an overnight stay before playing the Ernie Els designed Oubaai course the next morning.
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/83d955594aa70229a867602a42d4de82.jpg6221105Simon Laceyhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngSimon Lacey2017-07-31 07:30:442019-05-24 09:14:43South Africa Week - Part 1
This week’s blog is a guide to the best places for you to take a golf break to in October. Although the weather may start to be very cloudy and cold here in the UK by October, there are many places that still have the brilliant sunshine and mild climates which are perfect for golfing.
First up, we have the four-star Hotel Il Picciolo Etna Golf Resort & Spa which is located within Mount Etna Nature Park, Sicily. The hotel’s surroundings are simply stunning and being situated so far above sea level means that you can experience a cool sea breeze all year round – especially perfect for a round of golf! The rooms are all spacious and decorated with a sophisticated style, some of the rooms and suites also have their own terraces with stunning views of the surrounding nature. The hotel’s main restaurant, La Ghandaia, serves delicious Sicilian cuisine created with local produce and after a delicious meal, take time to relax in the lounge bar. The spa here is fantastic and with our packages you can get a free spa circuit with to enjoy on your golf break. The spa features a sauna, hamman area, water paradise area, a whirlpool and more to create the ultimate relaxation area. This is a fabulous hotel and Il Picciolo Golf Club is a spectacular course which winds its way through ancient lava flows. The course is beautifully maintained and has a stunning backdrop of Mount Etna as well as vineyards, oak trees and hazelnut trees.
Up next, we have the four-star Hotel Alicante Golf which boasts a fantastic location as it is set amongst beautiful gardens and just ten minutes’ walk from the beach. The rooms here are all spacious and brightly decorated with all of the amenities that you would expect from a hotel of this standard. Whilst you are here, you can either take the short walk, relax by the large outdoor pool or enjoy the spa and fitness centre. Here, you are near to a large shopping complex and you have so many places to enjoy good food and drink. The hotel’s Augusta Restaurant serves excellent Mediterranean dishes and whilst you are enjoying them you can look out onto the golf course. This hotel has so many fantastic facilities and is in such a great location, especially as it has its own 18-hole golf course on-site. Alicante Golf Resort provides you with a good variety of different holes both in length and difficulty. This course is not overly difficult but isn’t an easy course to score well on without a lot of concentration as you have to navigate your way around many water hazards. This is a beautiful course to play all year round with stunning scenery and a fantastic layout.
The fantastic five-star Precise Resort El Rompido in Spain is another great option for your October golf break and it isn’t hard to see why. The hotel overlooks the two fabulous El Rompido golf courses and you can take a short drive into the little fishing village of El Rompido from the resort. The rooms here are bright and attractive with private balconies where most rooms can enjoy beautiful views out to the Mediterranean Sea. You can spend your time relaxing by the large outdoor pool or enjoying the spa area which includes an indoor pool, Turkish baths and a sauna. We have some great packages for El Rompido which are semi-inclusive where you can enjoy the great buffet breakfast, dinner at the hotel’s restaurant and inclusive drinks between certain hours – perfect for when you want to have a few drinks in the evening after a day on the golf course!
Another great option for your October golf holiday is a holiday to the Albayt Nueva Alcaidesa Apartments on the Costa del Sol. The apartments here are spacious and fully-fitted with everything that you could need, including a fully-fitted kitchen. The apartments are located next to the fantastic Alcaidesa golf courses and whilst staying here you are only a five-minute walk from the sandy beaches of the Costa del Sol. You can enjoy access to the three shared outdoor pools as well as being so close to Gibraltar which is well-worth a visit! The Alcaidesa Health course was designed as a heathland style course with wide fairways. The views from the course are of the Mediterranean Sea, local mountain ranges and the river valley which are all beautiful sights! You will have to concentrate when playing a few of the holes on this course as the course meanders along the river valley which means that you could lose a few balls to the water hazards! Alcaidesa Links course is arguably one of the best Links courses in Spain. You can experience incredible views from this course out to sea and of the Straits of Gibraltar and North Africa! This is a tricky course with rolling hillsides and 2km of beachfront play which means that the wind is frequently in play.
Last, but not least, is the four-star Oliva Nova Beach & Golf Resort in Valencia. This hotel boasts a great location, right on the beach and situated between the resort towns of Oliva and Denia. All of the rooms here are spacious and feature their own private balcony or terrace with views of either the Mediterranean Sea, the resort or the Mongo Mountains. You can spend your days relaxing by the lagoon-style swimming pool, playing the on-site Oliva Nova 18-hole golf course or at the fully-equipped spa and fitness centres. For food, you can enjoy El Olivo’s traditional Valencian dishes or venture into one of the local Spanish towns. This is another great resort to book your next October golf break to…
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blogs and that is has prompted your thoughts for where you might be off to enjoy some golf in the sun this autumn…
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/73537725.jpg8521280Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2017-06-15 08:00:332019-05-24 09:27:50The Best Places for a Golf Holiday in October
This week’s blog is a South Africa special. South Africa has so much to offer its visitors with beautiful scenery, endless beaches, delicious food and stunning wildlife. With all of this, as well as some of the worlds’ best-kept golf courses offering world-class facilities, coupled with superb weather, it is really no surprise that this a much loved golfing destination. Courses such as Fancourt, Leopard Creek and Gary Player Sun City are known world-side and all host major tournaments. So, if you haven’t already booked your next golf escape to the sun then look no further than one of our superb packages to South Africa…
Rovos Rail is a world-class travel experience and gives you the opportunity to take a journey through South Africa of up to 15 days. Taking a journey on the Rovos Rail is an unforgettable experience and it really isn’t hard to see why. Board the train in Pretoria and enjoy fine wining and dining, superb service and the chance to see some of the most magical spots across South Africa as well as get the opportunity to play some truly testing golf courses. There are three journeys specifically for golfers – the Golf Safari, Golf Collage and the Golf Adventure – but they book very early, so don’t delay. With everyday taking you to a new destination with new sights and courses to play it is not surprising that this is our shining star of golf escape to South Africa.
If travelling by train is not the way you want to spend your golf trip to South Africa, then we have a fabulous alternative; Fancourt Estate. The five star estate offers stunning scenery and surroundings as well as two very different but equally beautiful hotels and three superb golf courses. The Manor House is just that, a remodelled manor house to create a stunning boutique hotel which is perfect for those of you looking for a quieter holiday in a beautiful place. This boutique hotel offers guests the ultimate luxury and a stay here could never be a disappointment.
The Fancourt Hotel features 115 beautifully decorated bedrooms and suites with all the amenities that you would expect from a hotel of this standard. There are a range of facilities for guests to enjoy from the spa and gym to the range of swimming pools and of course, the three brilliant golf courses. The Fancourt Estate is beautiful, with the breath-taking Outeniqua Mountains providing the backdrop for your stay.
Fancourt’s Outeniqua and Montagu courses have become known as two of the finest parkland courses in the country. Getting the opportunity to play a round of golf on each of these courses is a remarkable experience. However, the shining star of the Fancourt courses is The Links course, which is rated as the best in the country. The course is perhaps the most impressively designed course in South Africa and presents players with a unique and tough South African golfing experience. The land across the golf course is so vast and rolling that it feels like there is a change in elevation at every hole and the course blends effortlessly into its natural landscape. Each hole presents you with a new challenge but you will definitely remember every one, which just shows what an experience you will have. However, there is no doubting that this is an exceptionally tough course with fast greens and lots of rough. The course allows little leeway for wayward shots so if you are a golfer with a high handicap you may find this course a little frustrating. In the area there are some other amazing courses to play such as Oubaai, Simola and Pezula.
Another fantastic package to South Africa awaits you at the Pearl Valley Hotel. The hotel, opening soon, will be one of the most luxurious hotels in the area and, when combined with Pearl Valley’s championship golf course, will make for an enchanting stay. The hotel is situated on the Pearl Valley Estate which has stunning scenery. The new hotel will offer luxurious and spacious rooms as well as an onsite restaurant and bar and a large outdoor pool area for guests to enjoy. If you’d prefer there is an option for you to rent a resident’s lodge, which gives you access to the course as well as the other facilities on site, which is great for golf groups or families.
Undoubtedly, one of the best things about the new Pearl Valley Hotel is that now you have the opportunity to stay and play one of South Africa’s finest courses – Pearl Valley Golf Course. The course is nestled between the dramatic Simonsberg Mountains and the Berg River Valley. It has been recognised as the Best Conditioned Course in South Africa several years running. The course is a parkland course and has many water hazards which can shake up your round a little if you’re not careful.
The clubhouse here has a sophisticated atmosphere where you can soak up the beautiful surroundings and enjoy some lovely food and drink.
Enquire now as this new on-site accommodation and golf combination is bound to attract a lot of attention.
We hope that you enjoyed getting to know a little more about the fantastic packages that await you if you choose to venture out to South Africa…
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/cape-town-69916-5322461.jpg9001600Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2017-03-16 11:47:432019-05-24 10:32:16South Africa - Guide to the Rainbow Nation
This week’s blog is a guide to the best places for you to enjoy your family holiday with some fantastic golf on the side. With the Easter holidays fast approaching we are getting to that time of the year where you should be thinking about your family holiday for this year and this is the perfect place for you to start with some fantastic options and great deals to explore…
First on our list of suggestions is the Holiday Polynesia Hotel which is a great four-star hotel with extensive facilities on the Costa del Sol. The hotel is just under a five minutes’ walk from the beach and features a lagoon-style pool as well as their facilities (including a waterpark!) at the beach club which is open during the summer months. All of the rooms here are decorated with an oriental theme and come with a hob and a microwave which means that although self-catering would be limited, it is possible. However, the hotel does boast a range of restaurants for you to choose from including the Maeva buffet restaurant and Uro Wok which serves oriental cuisine. With plenty of leisure facilities including tennis courts, mini-golf, a cinema and a spa with a separate children’s area this is a superb destination for your next family holiday and with many golf courses within close proximity of the hotel you will get your golf fix too…
Next up we have La Manga Club Las Lomas Village in Murcia where guests are offered well-furnished apartments that have been built into the hillside here and feature stunning views of the golf courses and out to sea. There are a wide range of different accommodation options here which makes this resort perfect for your next family holiday as you can tailor your holiday to what you and your family want. The village offers a wide range of facilities from the mini-market to tennis courts to a wide range of restaurants for you to enjoy but there is always the option of self-catering in your apartment. There are multiple pools on the resort including specific children’s areas and an extensive spa that everyone can enjoy. This is a super resort for your next family golf holiday and with La Manga Golf Club just a short shuttle away you are never far from the facilities you would want for your ideal golf holiday.
Another property which makes the cut is the amazing La Cala Golf Resort, situated in the lovely La Cala de Mijas area. Taking into account the luxury accommodation comprising of the delightful 4* hotel and a list of great amenities, there is no question as to how it has established itself as the premier resort on the Costa del Sol. These amenities include the great bar to relax in after a round of superb golf at one of the three on-site courses, evening entertainment, gym and spa facilities, tennis courts, golf practice facilities, indoor and outdoor pools and a highly rated restaurant serving a large menu of high quality Spanish cuisine, plus much more!
Aphrodite Hills in Paphos is a luxurious and contemporary five-star resort with deluxe apartments that boast panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea or the on-site golf course that you can enjoy from the floor-to-ceiling windows in each of the apartments and villas. The suites have the option of interconnecting rooms which are perfect for families and there is also a Kids Club and a Crèche Facility. This means that when you are wanting to relax in the spa or play a round on the golf course, your children will be well looked after and they will get the chance to enjoy some fun activities. There are many other activities and facilities that as a guest here you can make good use of and there are several bars and restaurants for you to choose from when it comes to dining options. This is a lovely resort, perfect for a family golfing holiday as there are several courses within a short distance of the hotel.
In Turkey, we highly recommend the Gloria Golf Resort which is just a six minutes’ walk from the beach and features an on-site waterpark as well as two championship golf courses. All of the rooms are fitted with air conditioning and feature private balconies that look out onto the resort. This hotel boasts a fantastic all-inclusive option which is always great for families and there are six restaurants to choose from both buffet and a la carte options. For children, the resort offers a zoo where there are lots of supervised activities available for children of all ages so that you can enjoy a few peaceful hours away either at the spa or enjoying a round or two of golf! Whilst you are here, you can also enjoy the services and facilities of the Gloria Verde and Gloria Serenity Resorts if you fancy a change of scenery. This hotel offers high-class services and facilities to all of their guests and with there being so many activities, pools and of course, the beach available here it is the perfect destination for your next family golf break.
Last, but not least, is the Kristalli Apartment Hotel which is a lovely, family-run four-star hotel in Greece. The hotel is set in the picturesque old town of Malia just a stroll away from the beach. The accommodation is modern and spacious here with a private balcony or terrace, a kitchenette and satellite TV. You can relax by the pool or take a stroll down to the beach or into town very easily here. Just ten minutes’ walk away from the hotel are a wide range of different shops, restaurants and bars so you will always be able to find something that everyone would like to eat! This is a lovely destination for your next family golf holiday with the superb Crete Golf Club just 15 minutes’ drive away from the hotel and a town full of culture and history just a short stroll away.
We hope that you enjoyed this week’s guide to the top resorts for your next family golf holiday and that you will take a closer look at anything that has taken your fancy and start preparing fully for Summer 2017…
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/18145177.jpg8511280Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2017-02-16 10:12:052019-05-24 10:37:45The Best Places for a Family Holiday with Golf
This week’s blog is the second instalment to our guide to Mauritius. Mauritius is an up and coming country for golfers with its beautiful white sandy beaches, beautiful resort and superb golf courses. Part one focused on the great hotels and courses you can find on the East Coast here and this will inform you of the gems that you can find on the South Coast.
First up we have the Heritage Awali which is a stunning five-star beach resort surrounded by tropical gardens, swimming pools and the beach. The rooms all feature ethnic décor and a flat-screen TV as well as a private terrace or patio to enjoy the surroundings and warm weather. This hotel, like many others in Mauritius are all-inclusive and feature several restaurants and bars where you can experience everything from traditional Mauritian dishes to other international cuisines. If you are less into golf and more into relaxation then you will not be disappointed with the Seven Colours Spa where you can enjoy a wide range of different treatments. Besides relaxing by the many pool areas or on the beach there are also a range of different activities available including windsurfing and water-skiing. This is a stunning resort and is definitely one to take a look at when you are planning your next golf break to Mauritius.
Just two minutes’ walk from the beach and set amongst tropical gardens with a beautiful 18-hole golf course on-site is the five-star Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort. This hotel is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World and it isn’t hard to see why. There is so much to do here from tennis courts, to the fitness and wellness centre to the watersports. The rooms here are beautifully decorated with an elegant theme each with a flat-screen TV and the facilities you would expect from a hotel of this standard. The hotel boasts two superb restaurants where you can either enjoy Mediterranean barbecues by the swimming pool or Pan-Asian cuisine down on the beach at Gin’ja restaurant. Not only can you experience the ambience of a small, elegant hotel when staying here but you can have access to the restaurants at the neighbouring Heritage Awali. This is another beautiful Heritage hotel on the South Coast and is perfect for your next relaxing golf holiday to Mauritius.
Both of the Heritage hotels have access to the stunning Heritage Golf Course & Club which is a superb 18-hole championship golf course which boasts spectacular surroundings of rolling mountains on one side of the fairways and a lagoon on the other. This course is known for its wide fairways and sizeable putting surfaces but many of which require you to reach them with a blind shot! This is a great holiday course as with five different tee positions it is a challenge for experienced golfers but can be enjoyed by casual golfers too! The course is always in immaculate condition and has a wide variety of holes which are both testing and have beautiful views from them – a great course all-round.
Last, but not least is Paradis Beachcomber Golf Resort & Spa which is a lovely five-star resort surrounded by palm trees and white sandy beaches located on Mauritius’ Morne Peninsula. The rooms here are decorated with natural tones and all have free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV as well as spectacular views of the Indian Ocean from private balconies off of the rooms. This hotel offers a bed and breakfast option which means that you get to experience the delicious breakfast buffet at the Le Brabant restaurant and then choose which of the other three restaurants you want to dine in each evening. La Palma serves Italian dishes, Blue Marlin is a delicious seafood restaurant and La Ravanne serves traditional Creole specialities. The hotel offers guests so many areas to enjoy from the large pool area, the beach is just a stone’s throw-away and there are watersports available there including windsurfing, snorkelling and diving. This is a brilliant, lively hotel with all the facilities and activities available that you would expect from a five-star resort and you will definitely not be disappointed with a holiday here!
Paradis Golf Club is a great 18-hole course on-site of the Paradis Beachcomber Golf Resort & Spa. The course boasts a spectacular location nestled between the stunning Morne Mountains and the shores of the Indian Ocean. The front nine holes are rather narrow and the back nine feature water hazards on almost every hole making it a challenge even for the most confident of golfers. The views along the back nine holes are simply breathtaking as the course sweeps out and back along the coast before turning back towards the clubhouse. This gem of a course will give you a testing but consistent round of golf with some views that you could only experience on the exotic island of Mauritius.
We hope that you have enjoyed both of the blogs on Mauritius and the gems that await you there both in terms of luxury resorts and superb golf courses. With January dragging on it is hard to even think about when we will get to experience some warm, sunny weather here in the UK and one sure way to take your mind off the January blues is to book your next golf escape to Mauritius…
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Le-Paradis-Golf-Target54-1200x800.jpg8001200Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2017-01-19 08:00:302019-05-24 10:44:38The Insider's guide to Mauritius - Part 2
This week’s blog is a guide to Mauritius. Mauritius is a beautiful a stunning country in the Indian Ocean where you can enjoy some of the most breathtaking scenery, beaches and golf resorts. With practically year-round good weather, so much to do, see and enjoy as well as some of the most beautiful beaches that you will ever get to experience, this is definitely a place you must consider when you are planning your next golf escape…
First up, on the East Coast we have the Constance Belle Mare Plage which is a stunning resort stretching over 1.2 miles of private beach. The rooms are all spacious and elegantly decorated with separate living areas and a satellite TV, some of the rooms overlook private pools and the Indian Ocean. There are seven different restaurants for you to choose from when you are staying here, some are internationally themed a la carte and the others are buffet restaurants but all boast incredible views either over the Indian Ocean, the golf course or the pool area. There resort also boasts six bars so you will certainly never be short of somewhere to get a refreshing drink after a tough round of golf! If you are less into golf but more into relaxation then you can enjoy the spa area, relax by one of the four swimming pools or spend the day sunbathing on the private stretch of golden sand. If you are considering a family holiday here, then there is also a kid’s club for the little ones to enjoy and there is the opportunity for excursions from the hotel to take part in different activities from watersports to tennis.
When you are staying at the Constance Belle Mare Plage you will inevitably play the Legend Golf Course and the Links Golf Course. The Legend Golf Course is laid out in the centre of a tropical forest and has 18 very different holes for you to enjoy. Although water hazards threaten you on most of the holes, the fairways are fairly wide and forgiving which makes this a beautiful holiday course. The toughest hole on this course is the par-4 5th hole where you need to avoid water in order to get your ball onto the green.
The Links Golf Course is a magnificent course set in natural surroundings with the fairways rolling over natural terrain in a links style. When the strong sea breeze is in play along with the various water hazards along the course this can test any golfer to score close to their handicap. This is a beautifully picturesque course with even the clubhouse featuring stunning views of the surroundings. This is another great championship course to top off the fabulous resort and sister course you can enjoy here!
Shangri-La Le Touessrok Resort & Spa is another superb five-star resort on the East Coast. The resort is located along the white-sand beaches of Trou d’Eau Douce Bay and is set amongst tropical gardens. All of the rooms and suites are decorated in with a traditional Mauritian theme and each boast their own private balcony from which you can enjoy stunning views of the Indian Ocean. You can enjoy the spa and wellness centre whilst you are not out playing a round of golf or relaxing by the outdoor pool or on the beach, at the spa centre you can enjoy a range of different treatments as well as the sauna, hot-tub and steam room. This hotel also features a range of different dining options from a fabulous fish restaurant to an Indian restaurant to a trendy beach grill restaurant! Whilst here you will never be short of anything to do as there are a range of activities to enjoy down on the beach like watersports as well as the on-site golf course and the gym. This is another fantastic resort perfect for your next golf break to Mauritius…
Last, but certainly not least, is the Long Beach Golf & Spa Resort which is another five-star resort situated on the East Coast. All of the rooms are spacious and decorated with a contemporary theme, they also each boast their own private balconies where you can enjoy uninterrupted views of the Indian Ocean. There are three outdoor pools, the stretch of private beach and a sun terrace for guests to relax on and around and for further relaxation you can enjoy a range of different treatments at the spa. Although there is not a golf course on-site, you are just 20-minutes’ drive from Il Aux Cerfs Golf Club and there is often the option of getting complimentary shuttles from the hotel. Like most of the hotels here, there are many different restaurants for you to choose from where you can enjoy all cuisines from traditional Mauritian dishes to international cuisines – there certainly is something for everyone! This resort is a beautiful one for your next golf holiday to Mauritius and with so many activities on-site as well as the stunning golf nearby it isn’t hard to see why…
Whilst staying at these last two resorts you can expect to enjoy a round or two at Il Aux Cerfs Golf Course which features 18-holes all set out across a sugar plantation. The setting and surroundings of this course are simply breathtaking, with white sandy beaches lining the fairways as well as fairways that wind through lush mangrove forests, over volcanic lava outcrops and past tidal pools to reach the final 18th hole. This is a tight course but with some of the most stunning views from a course that you will ever get to experience – definitely one not to miss out on!
We hope that you enjoyed this week’s blog and with the weather just getting colder and colder start to consider where and when you are going to get your next fix of the sun and some well-needed vitamin D!
https://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/02MU00-IM1002-mauritius-1475.jpg8601475Ella Rubenhttps://www.golf-escapes.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Golf-Escapes.pngElla Ruben2016-12-08 08:00:332019-05-24 10:55:37The Insider's Guide to Mauritius