Chaparral - Southern Spain - Spain

Chaparral Golf Club,
Urbanizacion El Chaparral N-340,
Km 203,
29648 Mijas Costa,
Málaga,
Andalucia,
Spain


  • +34 952 58 77 00

  • Domingo Gavira

  • Pepe Gancedo

  • Daniel Colomar


Visit Golfbreaks.com for a golf holiday at El Chaparral

Nestled in a wooded valley-like setting, the 6.000-metre layout of Chaparral Golf Club (the club dropped the prefix "El" in 2019) was designed by Pepe Gancedo and the course (in a Berkshire Red style) is routed in an entertaining six par three, six par four and six par five configuration.

Although the course is not especially long, Chaparral is no pushover and conquering this layout will require accuracy as well as skill. There is much variety between the various holes and those that do score well here tend to go easy with the driver, choosing fairway woods and long irons for many tee shots.

There is no shortage of golf courses along the Costa del Sol, but few are appointed with the delights of El Chaparral with its exciting topography that features dramatic valleys and barrancas that must be treated with extreme caution.

A great example comes early on in the round at the 477-metre 3rd hole, which on length alone should be a straightforward par five, but its stroke index 1 suggests otherwise. The 3rd doglegs left and the tee shot needs to be placed down the right side of the fairway in order to see what’s in store for the second shot. It’s the second, or the approach shot for the big hitter, which asks questions. The green is a long but narrow target and a ditch cuts diagonally across the fairway some 100 metres from the green, leaving a challenging lay up for those that choose to play the hole as a three shotter. Those that go for the green in two must avoid the water on the left side of the green at all costs.

Chaparral Golf Club is a family business, run by Antonio Rubio with passion and attention to detail. Playing surfaces are managed by a knowledgeable agronomist and the on and off course service is to be savoured.

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Reviews for Chaparral

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Description: Nestled in a wooded valley-like setting, the 6.000-metre layout of Chaparral Golf Club (the club dropped the prefix "El" in 2019) was designed by Pepe Gancedo and the course is routed in an entertaining six par three, six par four and six par five configuration. Rating: 6.3 out of 10 Reviews: 13
TaylorMade
Bananas

We played El Chaparral or Chaparral as it is now called a few years back. At the time we dubbed it El S*** as the condition was so poor.

We were tempted back by the promise of new owners and much better condition, playing in October 2019. Nope, still rubbish. Despite not being allowed on the fairways with buggies for pretty much the whole course, the condition was again poor. Green had pitch marks all over them and while the tees weren’t as awful as the last time we played, it wasn’t much better. The idea of 6,6,6 par three, four and five is good but to achieve this, many holes are ‘tricked up’. The 17th is as bad a hold design as I can recall.

One to avoid.

November 23, 2019
2 / 10
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Erika Persson

Played this course with my husband for the first time and we were very pleased. Nice course and great views. The fairways are embedded in the landscape. Very beautiful. All was satisfying. Course, maintenance , service and lunch. We will play here again.

October 21, 2019
8 / 10
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Lucas

Our second year back in Marbella, and another 5 courses to be played - this was the first time any of our group had played Chaparral, and likely to be the last as none of us believed it would be worth a second visit. The staff in the pro shop were lovely, as were the bar staff (although a little understaffed as service was slow even for Spain). The caddy master was a little surly, but helpful enough.

What I did find strange is that you had to buy a rubber tee peg for the driving range, first time I have come across this and they forgot to mention it when we bought the range tokens - only a Euro each but strange nonetheless.

Finally we teed off to a first hole that represents a valley with a very elevated approach to the first green and it was probably the worst conditioned green I've seen in a long time. You weren't allowed your carts onto the fairway on this hole and by the time we had finished it we were all fairly worn out.

After 5 or 6 holes we were not impressed with the condition of the course, particularly the tees and greens were poor and this continued throughout. However I would say the layout and enjoy-ability improved after this point with a more open back nine especially.

All in all there are far better courses in Marbella and this wont be one we will be returning to in the future.

October 01, 2019
4 / 10
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Thomas Hansen

Great course with some cracking, helpful staff, course in very good condition. The Club sandwich just excellent.

February 06, 2019
8 / 10
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Jaime Mamolar

Es un Campo de Golf único de la Costa del Sol por su ambiente forestal (recuerda a los campos de Canadá). He jugado un torneo esta semana y me ha sorprendido gratamente su cuidado mantenimiento y su buen estado en general del campo. Cada hoyo es distinto. Los greenes en estado óptimo y con velocidad media alta. La siega muy controlada y los bunkers perfectamente rastrillados.

November 18, 2018
8 / 10
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GC

SADLY DISAPPOINTING! For a well ranked course, the course was in poor condition when we played with a number of Tees & Greens in particularly bad condition.

The 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 7th & 8th greens stick in my mind, all suffering badly with pitch-marks & what looked almost like small divots (the greenkeeper was filling in the 8th as we approached, almost like you'd sand a Par 3 Tee) but the main culprit for us was definitely the 11th Green - a large portion had been poorly re-turfed and was almost unplayable (the edges of the newly laid turn were actually turning up).

On to the Tees - again, 2nd, 3rd, 9th and a few others were almost weed-like in condition, not properly turfed and were a big disappointment on the day. It should also be noted, if playing from white tees, there's a very strange & ill-placed fence/net infront of the 6th tee.

With some TLC and investment, this could COULD be pretty amazing but our experience was poor & unfortunately, a major anti-climax!

October 09, 2018
2 / 10
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Jan Pavlik
Played course in October 2013.I was very much looking forward to this course as it is unique on Costa del Sol. Layout is nice, very technical holes, beautiful views. You have to really think how to play before each hole and if you make any mistake you are always punished. Very challenging course. The only problem is quality of greens , fairways etc. Very very poor…. Some of greens were almost unputtable , fairways mostly too dry in some places almost without any grass. Tees – just sand and little of grass…. Only thing what this course needs is MONEY… I can’t recommend at current conditions….
February 13, 2014
6 / 10
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Pat McEvoy
I so very badly wanted to rate this course higher than I have done.The hospitality upon arrival was very welcoming as it was with our service when we had a bite to eat and a few drinks on departure.The course layout is simply stunning. a fantastic mix of Par 3,4 & 5 over all sorts of undulating terrain.The par fives were my favourite. With the double winding par five with a huge tree in the centre of the fairway a particularly different hole.The final two holes are up there with anything I have played abroad, with the green tucked away on 17 beside what appears to be the wall of a cliff. That said, when we played at the end of Sept 2012 - the fairways were not well trimmed at all, and the greens could only be described as very poor indeed. Very bumpy, full of unrepaired pitchmarks with bare patches throughout.It became all too frustrating when you had played a number of good shots but were having to settle for 3 putts on a regular basis due to the nature of the inconsistent greens.As there had been extensive flooding in the area a fortnight prior to the visit, I am assuming this wouldn't be a regular state of play and have thus given it a rating of 4. It could easily be a 5 or 6 if this were remedied. I played La Cala Americas on the same trip and it wasn't in poor condition at all, so not sure how much the rain can be blamed.Worth a try though!
September 24, 2013
6 / 10
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Andy
It is great to see this course on the Top 100 site as a GEM – I would think that it will not be too long before It gets a ranking position. If golf is meant to be fun, then you must visit here when you are in the Malaga/Marbella area. Like a few other courses in the area the land is not perfect to design a golf course but this is in my opinion the best of this style – plenty of elevation changes, plenty of different styles of hole but at El Chaparral, it works well. The first thing of note is the warm welcome from the staff on arrival, they all have the objective to ensure you have a great day. The opening hole sets the scene early, a par-4 with a drive over a barranca (a deep ravine) and then an uphill approach to a two tiered green – a great start. The 8th hole is another favourite of mine and a very tactical hole – under 350 yards but a severe dog-leg to the right with a dry water bed down the right-side makes the tee shot, the key shot. The par-3 10th has another elevated tee with the green about 40 feet below which makes the hole play a little less than the 175 yards – there are plenty of good looking trees that surround this short hole too. Hole 17 is a memorable par-5, where the second shot is probably the most important, this needs to be an accurate lay-up to attack a unique green-site, this is slightly elevated, protected by sand at the front and a natural wall of earth at the rear –unforgettable. The final hole is a good looking par-3 and like the opener, has to carry the barranca….next stop is the very welcoming clubhouse. The bar, the terrace and the restaurant have an atmosphere that will make you want to stay a while that is for sure. El Chaparral is recommended for many reasons, all of them good.
August 09, 2013
8 / 10
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James
What a pleasure it was to visit El Chaparral. It's a family business and it shows. El Chaparral Golf Course - Photo by reviewerThe welcome you will receive is genuine and the hospitality warm. Someone recommended it to me last year and it did not disappoint, There are 6 par 5's, 4's and 3's. No two holes are even remotely the same and the greens are in brilliant condition. The course is tight in places and forgiving in others. Some holes have ribbon fairways with undulating terrain and others are wide and confidence inducing. My playing partners thought this was the best of the courses we played on our 4 day trip. Very enjoyable. This is a fun course to play and is well worth a visit. The club has soul and personality. It is memorable for all the right reasons. You should seek it out, for the dramatic golf, the views, the greens and the relaxed hospitality. JCB LAY
May 17, 2013
6 / 10
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