A round or two at La Reserva Club plus a night at the Admiral Casino and Lodge makes for a perfect short trip to Sotogrande

Mediterranean Masterpiece – La Reserva Club, Sotogrande

Golf arrived in the famous Andalucian residential development of Sotogrande over 50 years ago, with Robert Trent Jones Senior’s Real Club de Golf Sotogrande first to open in 1964.

Most golfers, though, will be more familiar with the world-famous course that has taken centre stage since opening as Sotogrande New in 1974, before being rechristened Valderrama in 1984.

La Reserva Club, which opened in 2003, is a striking new addition to Sotogrande’s golf offering and the handiwork of Cabell B Robinson, who cut his course design teeth alongside Trent Jones back in 1967.

The course plays to a backdrop of mountains over the area’s higher ground, making excellent use of the terrain’s natural undulations right from the off with an inviting downhiller, where you can cut off more of the dogleg than you initially think.

The 2nd is a superb par 5 playing gently uphill to a shallow, raised green, with much sand to ponder in the lay-up zone.

The first of four fine par 3s comes on the well-protected 5th, with the short downhill 7th perhaps the prettiest of the quartet.

Before that comes the memorable par-5 6th, played from an elevated tee gazing out towards the Mediterranean.

Water tight right makes for a daunting approach from any range!

There’s more water right on the 8th but bailing out too far left makes a long par 4 even longer.

The 10th – once the 1st – serves up the tightest drive of all, with water left to contend with on 11, another longish par 4 up and over a crest.

15th hole, La Reserva Golf Club

The 15th plays the other side of this water, the course’s most daunting par 3 at 222 metres from the tips.

This excellent club is also blessed with superb off-course facilities, including a huge practice ground, a large putting green and a fine chipping area.

L’Olive Restaurant is a great spot to unwind post-round, while future plans include a world-class spa, watersports facilities, beach clubs and more restaurants.

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay and are keen on the excitement of a casino at the end of a good day’s golf (assuming you’re 18 or over, of course), then the newly opened Admiral Casino and

Lodge in San Roque can meet both needs under one roof.

Its light and spacious suites and double rooms are furnished to a high standard, and it’s just a short stroll down, perhaps via the bar, to the bright lights of the casino and a chance to try your luck at whatever takes your fancy from a wide selection of popular casino games.

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