Real Golf on the Costa del Sol
As a welcome
relief from the floodplain formerly known as Southern England, Stuart
Barber - the Golf Today Network Publisher - and a party of six other
intrepid golfers flew with GB Airways to stay at the recently completely
refurbished 5 star Los Monteros Hotel near Marbella on Spainís Costa
After a very
early check in at London Heathrow we were expertly catered for by
GB Airways and flew in one of their new stylish aircraft to Gibraltar.
Although a separate company, GB Airways operate the British Airways
route to Gibraltar and also offer return flights under the BA banner
On arrival at
Gibraltar, the only inconvenience, and itís a very small one, is
to walk across the runway into Spain and then pick up your hire
car. Donít succumb to the temptation to do this in Gibraltar as
it can take a long time to get through Spanish customs in a car,
but on foot its no problem.
then drove to Alcaidesa a stylish complex close to Gibraltar
with magnificent views out over the Mediterranean. The course
designed by Peter Alliss and Clive Clark is set in gorse and
runs along the edge of the sea and offers a very good test of
golf. Although there is no hotel on the complex there are some
excellent ones close
by at San Roque and Almenara, both of which have their own courses.
With the new motorway the drive from Marbella is no more than
an excellent afternoonís golf we drove to Los Monteros, just
the Malaga airport side of Marbella. The hotel has been beautifully
renovated under the guidance of the Le Meridien chain, and offers
accommodation and an ambience truly worthy of its 5 star rating.
First class amenities and service made our short stay excellent
value. Set in lush gardens and only a short walk from the sea
where the hotel has its own private bar and beach Los Monteros
offers a wide range of
from Standard twins, to Junior and full Suites. There is also
a full range of conference and business facilities at the hotel.
The main complex is built around an olympic-sized swimming pool
with poolside bar and restaurant.
day we drove early to Estepona Golf Club, which under English
ownership is improving its facilities, and through Longshot
Golf offers a discounted green fee of only £21 per round. Buggies
are recommended although you have to stay on the cart paths.
However the course is hilly and quite tiring.
following morning we played at Rio Real, which is 10 minutes
from Los Monteros. A lovely golf course well designed and immaculately
maintained Rio Real is a true test of golf. Reminiscent of Morton
Hampstead the river Real keeps appearing when you least expect
it and catches the unwary shot! Busy at the beginning of April
to play I would unhesitatingly recommend it of the three courses
we played. The restaurant serves excellent cold cervesa and
piping hot tortillas! Book through Longshot Golf and staying
at Los Monteros you can obtain a discounted rate of about £25
a round at this time of the year against the quoted rate of
about £34. Very good value indeed and a most enjoyable and testing
course to play- perhaps scoring 21 points Stableford on the
back nine had its influence but truly well worth a visit.
in the clubhouse it was time to drive back to Gibraltar, then after
sampling the amazing value of the duty free shop, we were flown
back to a wet and windy England care of GB Airways. Somehow the
first tee at a very wet and cold English golf course the next morning
didnít seem quite so attractive.
with British Airways from London to Southern Spain up to six times
every day. There are 22 flights a week to Malaga, twice daily to
Gibraltar and five times a week to Seville. Flights operated by
GB Airways. For reservations telephone 0845 77 333 77 or log on