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Valderrama, Sotogrande
(4.6/5 based on 60+ reviews on the web)
The Real Club Valderrama is one of the best known golf clubs in Europe. It is located in the resort of Sotogrande, San Roque in the Andalusia region of southern Spain, a few miles from Gibraltar, and has a single 18-hole course, along with a 9-hole par 3 course.Valderrama was constructed in 1974 as "Sotogrande New," to the designs of leading American golf course architect Robert Trent Jones. Renamed "Las Aves" in 1981, it was acquired by Jaime Ortiz-Patiño in 1984. The golf course was redesigned and expanded by the original architect and became "Valderrama."By 1999, Valderrama was rated the top course in mainland Europe by Golf World magazine.The fourth hole, La Cascada, is the course's signature hole. It is a par 5 with a pond to the right of the two-tiered green. The practice ground was called the best in Europe by Nick Faldo.The club's course was the traditional host of the now defunct Volvo Masters, hosting the event from 1988 to 2008, with a five-year break when the event was moved to the Montecastillo Golf Club.Events stagedLadies Spanish Open: 1982Volvo Masters: 1988–1996; 2002–2008 Ryder Cup: 1997 (the first ever held in Continental Europe)WGC-American Express Championship: 1999, 2000Andalucía Masters: 2010–2011
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Read about the Sunday buffet in a review that 'you must not miss'!! Getting there with friends on a Sunday late September we were told by the guardsman that it was just for members. On their home page...  more »
  • This course is amazing, eb=ven though I had my worst day ever playing. The cork trees make this a very difficult track if you do not hit straight every shot. Well worth a look. 
  • Had the pleasure of playing with a member a few times in August. It gets better each time you play. Very punishing if you stray your ball into the Cork Trees. There are no set tee times for members. I...  more »
Google
  • We played Real Club Valderrama on October 5, 2016. Our experience, from parking in the members parking lot with the assistance of staff, to a simply delightful late lunch in the superb grille, was pure bliss. Valderrama strikes you as larger (and sandier) than life. Like all the "renowned" (some deservedly, some not so much) courses in Spain and Portugal, the course is looong (6100 yards for SENIORS, only 6900 from the tips). The course was in pristine conditions, perfectly manicured and flawlessly landscaped. There were in excess of 200 workers busy on the grounds during our round. There is sand abutting nearly every landing area and nearly every green. The traps are huge and deep; the sand is consistently excellent. The greens are fast, but not excessively so, and they run true. They are, however, almost all contoured and the pin positions on some were sadistic. With a few exceptions, the landing areas are generous, but as noted above, well-trapped if you stray too wide. And there's the rub. On an early hole, you could smoke it down the left side of the fairway, ten yards off center and have an impossible shot to the green because you are coming in from the "wrong angle". If you chance the right side of the fairway, you risk the sand if you stray off the fairway by a few feet. The par threes are excellent. Each is challenging and requires precision. My only double bogey of the round came on a par three where I was a yard short. The design philosophy seems to be to force you to play your second shot long and putt downhill and downgrain. On greens running 9 or 10, that's doable. On Valderamma's greens running at 11-12, it is very difficult. Anticipate three putt greens. If I seem to be suggesting that Valderrama is a very difficult golf course, its only because I am. But it is fair – you can see (or anticipate) the trouble and you have conservative but safe options. You get into trouble when you try to score by forcing shots. And despite its difficulty, the course is IMHO a great golf course and a great golfing experience. One of my favorite one liners on new golf courses on distant shores is "I didn't come all the way from Michigan to lay up". At Valderrama, I should have and after four holes, I did. Valderrama is a great golf course because its tests every aspect of your game and challenges your ability to think on the golf course. We had a truly great golfing experience. One of the golf courses that deserve to be on any serious golfer's bucket list - and I haven't even talked about the great pro shop, practice facilities and staff.
  • Played Valderrama three times over three years and cannot wait to go back. Brilliant. The course, the service ... the lot. The cork trees are great if you keep well away from them.
  • simply fantastic. One of the best maintained courses ever. If you want to play easy golf, go somewhere else ;)
  • Best golf course in Spain if you can afford it
  • loved this corse - absolutely beautiful