There's little question that Abama provides a regal view -- the Atlantic Ocean in full sight from the clubhouse and the Ritz Carlton provides all the key amenities associated with top tier travel. The Dave Thomas course does require buggy usage because of the severity of the terrain. With the amount of elevation change the player must be able to adjust accordingly. For someone who is playing the course for the first time it pays to move up at least one tee box and play cautiously because of the narrow landing area and the close proximity of out-of-bounds on a number of the holes. This is the kind of course where the difference between one's first round and a return effort can easily be several shots.
Abama is a much tougher layout than many resort oriented courses and much of this is tied to the elevation changes encountered. The green sites are also hard to approach because of the land movements.
The ending holes on both sides are demanding because the shotmaking must be flawless. The downhill 8th and 9th holes are akin to an action movie. Unless you are truly dialed in it's quite easy to make a serious donation to one's golf ball budget. The inward half of holes is not as dramatic as the front side but the hole quality is much more consistent. The ending stretch -- featuring two quality par-4's at the 16th and 18th -- give nothing away and are especially good.
One can only imagine the costs to build Abama because the course is literally on the side of a massive hill. For those who are traditionalists at heart they may scoff at the layout as being nothing more than a golf amusement park with walking clearly not feasible. Such a view is a bit much. There are clear standout holes at Abama and given what's available on Tenerife it's worth playing to see what all the commotion -- pro or con -- is about.
by M. James Ward
Date: March 19, 2018