For a golf holiday, a change of lifestyle, or simply to improve your game, then Spain’s Las Colinas Golf & Country Club has got it covered. The resort offers you a taste of the Spanish lifestyle, as Alison Root reports.
When it comes to booking a golfing holiday in Spain we're spoilt for choice with the number of golf courses, hotels and resorts on offer, but if it’s more than just a holiday that you’re after, perhaps a change of lifestyle, then Las Colinas Golf & Country Club ticks all the right boxes.
Located 40 minutes south of Alicante on the Costa Blanca and a few miles inland from Playa Flamenca, Las Colinas covers an overwhelming expanse of land, in fact 330 hectares, surrounded by hills and set within an area of preserved natural beauty.
There is no hotel, but thirteen communities that feature luxury villas and apartments that are available to rent or buy. Most villas have their own outdoor pool, and apartment blocks have at least one communal pool. There's ample parking for either a private vehicle or a hired motorised golf cart that comes with its own number plate, indicator and all- something I haven't seen before- but ideal to use for whizzing around the resort with golf gear in tow.
Las Colinas opened in 2010 so is still relatively young, and following the success of the first development phase, the place is still a hive of activity with the building of further villas and apartments.
For me there was a certain amount of home envy as the group was shown various villas. Each is individually and cleverly designed and my first impression was one of spaciousness. The balconies are exceptionally wide and there’s a serious amount of glass, contributing to a modern and bright living area that’s complemented by the eclectic furnishings.
It was such a shame that the most expensive villa at 1.2 million had been snapped up the previous day! However, if you’re in the market to buy, a two double bedroom, two bathroom apartment costs from €275,000. I had my eye on the three double bedroom, three bathroom villa at the community called Enebro (all the communities are named after trees) at a cost of €756,000. This one is tucked away and has a real home from home feel with a lovely Mediterranean-style garden - I’ll keep doing the lottery!
The Cabell Robinson-designed golf course has already received international recognition and numerous accolades, and until 2017 will host the second stage of the European Tour Qualifying School.
There are in excess of 100 bunkers, many of which are in range, and along with the aesthetically pleasing intrusion of a few lakes, hazards are aplenty. The holes offer variety, so you’re likely to use most clubs in your bag, but definitely sharpen up your short game before playing here, as you’ll be faced with some tricky chip shots from the tail off areas around the fast but true greens.
The design of the clubhouse and its UNiK restaurant is a far cry from a typical UK clubhouse, thanks to Pepe Leal, one of the best-known Spanish interior designers. The Kumquat trees that line a mini courtyard at the entrance provide a warm welcome, and with hammock-style seating and several quirky wall-mounted ornaments, the modern décor is fascinating. Whether you choose to dine inside or al fresco, I highly recommend the signature cuttlefish and prawn paella.
When you fancy some sea air, the private beach club at La Glea beach is approximately 10kms from Las Colinas and is open to guests year-round, although in July and August property owners have priority and visitors have to pay a daily entrance fee to use the facilities that overlook the infinity pool and sea beyond.
Back at base and at one with nature, is the International School of Falconry where there are a variety of birds including hawks, falcons, owls and goshawks that you can learn how to fly or if you prefer, like me, simply take for a walk! The star of the school is Margarita, and that’s not a cocktail, but a beautiful Eagle Owl.
In addition to golf, there’s tennis and paddle tennis courts, a gymnasium and a 3km nature trail, so plenty of activities to enjoy.
Las Colinas promotes itself as a world apart and having experienced this relaxing and peaceful location, I happen to agree.
The above is an extract from the July/August 2016 issue of Women & Golf magazine, on sale June 17. Never miss an issue
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