Real Moraleja (3) - Central Spain - Spain

Real Club La Moraleja,
Courses 3 & 4,
Carretera Fuente el Saz (M 111) km 16,
Finca soto de Mozanaque,
28110 Algete,

  • + 34 (0) 916 500 700

Real Club La Moraleja was established in 1973 and the club’s original No.1 course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, was unveiled three years after its formation. The No.2 course followed in 1990, designed by Ron Kirby of Nicklaus Design.

La Moralaja’s ambitious expansion plans were financed by the sale of an 82-acre plot of land, allowing the club to develop another two courses (No. 3 and No. 4) in the nearby municipality of Algete, around 20 kilometers from its main sports complex near Madrid airport.

Moraleja (3) is a Jack Nicklaus Signature course and it’s tucked away in a secluded setting, with sand-capped fairways routed around four large lakes. A lot of soil was shifted during construction to create a little movement in a rather flat landscape and newly planted trees will add definition to the holes as they mature.

Strategy is more important than length off the tee on this course, with the Golden Bear forcing golfers to think carefully about each and every shot in order to give the player a better option for the shot that follows next.
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Reviews for Real Moraleja (3)

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Description: In 2013, the No.3 (North) course opened at the burgeoning Real Club La Moraleja. Both No.3 and No.4 are located further north of the Spanish capital than courses 1 and 2. Rating: 8 out of 10 Reviews: 2
Javier Pintos

It was the first leg of 5 rounds in 3 days during a flash trip to Madrid which included a Champions League Game between local team and PSG which was an absolute blast. But let’s stick to golf and go for the first step of a very demanding stretch of 3 days.

Chilly morning in Madrid and very early we went off to the site which is not beside 1-2 but some miles away in a new open place with 2 courses and a brand new club house which is currently under construction with a budget of over 6M Euro. Frosty morning and despite the cold we all three got our carts and gave a ride to Course 4 which was under maintenance (Greens Aeration) but of what we saw it looks phenomenal including some top class bunkering off the tee and some serious slopes on the greens. On a definitely “wish list” for next visit as well as course 2, Retamares, Centro Nacional and some more.

Some minutes after 9:30am we started the round and the tee selection had to do with the climate, not the wisest choice in cold winter to go too far back so yellow tees was a very good selection to enjoy a mix of challenge and fun out there. As a general overview of the course you can say it is wide open where demand off the tee will be length, rough and crossbunkers with not many trees so when missing you will most probable to have a full swing and then skill to come back will depend 100% on you. And the greens … not a flat spot, at least 12´on the stimp, extremely well kept and you can see on them the highest quality of construction and maintenance which will allow several pin positions and course set up could be very tough. I can say it looked like no easy pin positions where possible on almost any green.

Tees, fairways, bunkers and attention to detail showed the highest standard not only of construction and maintenance. I imagine this course in spring or fall with a tough set up can be a very nice test for the Tour Pros.

There weren’t many tee shots in which you could feel extremely demanded and this in no means says they were easy but there was room to miss and on the other side if off the wrong side of the fairway there was little chance to attack some of the pins. Also some second shots on par 5s where you could not reach the green demand some wisdom as if on the wrong spot the chances to attack were none, as it happened to me on 15th where I got to a small crossbunker by the green and I had absolutely no chance of getting it close which led into a disappointing 3 putt bogey.

There are also some bullets to highlight about the design:

As Many mother courses, a couple of very good reachable par 4s but in both cases what on left side and bunkers on the right demanded precision if going for them (8th and 17th).

The 2 tier green on 4th was something special and tough, it divided the green in left and right and if on the other side of the pin … pfff unless you are Jim who holed a 40ft for birdie that would have run off the green.

The other par 3 7th with a short pot bunker and a huge green sloping to the water was good as well, from right to left to the water it was F1 speed.

11th was an 8 iron for me from yellow but I then stood on the back and it would have been a 220yds hybrid over water where a slight push would be always wet. Maybe the most demanding tee shot off the back.

15th maybe the best par 5 with water all along the right side from 250yds to the green and bunkers on the left asking for a short lay up as the best call.

The final hole is a tough one, huge green again and a short shot could run off quite a few yards.

The Course has a feel off Pilará GC in Argentina, same style and piece of land but bunkering was not as similar. But in higher scale, if Members complain of those greens they should come and try Moraleja in this firmness and speed, they would be surprised.

Another thing I really liked at Moraleja is 4 courses and all of them totally different from each other which for Members is great as every round you are to play you can choose what kind of golf you want to play.

A very nice test, a very good course, world class maintenance and challenge up to where you wish to demand your game. Course for sure in the, at least, Top 10 in Spain.

March 14, 2022
8 / 10
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Played the course a couple of times over the last 6 months.

La Moraleja is a private club with four 18 hole courses, all designed by jack Nicklaus. It is quite posh and you need to be invited by a member. The No 3 course is the highest rated “signature course”. It is fairly new (2013) and in open terrain. A typical Nicklaus design with huge greens, little rough, wide fairways and 8 water holes. The terrain was originally flat and it is still open but they moved a lot of earth to give some undulations on many holes. The course plays extremely long (7500 yards) from the Championship tees (played with a long hitting 3 Handicap member who said he played it only once from the back tees and said it was too tough for him), but the member tees give an easier challenge. There are strategic options on all the holes which make it interesting to play, despite the open terrain making it less visually enticing than some other courses in the area. Example is the short 11th, only 123 yards, but water in front and the green shapes left to right, meaning a pushed tee shot will most likely be in the water and a slightly left iron will have you in the bunker at the back facing a downhill bunker shot towards a very fast green and the water. I was a bit underwhelmed after my first round, but warmed up to the course when playing it the 2nd time as the different ways to play became more obvious. Course conditions are excellent, the Greens were very fast (11 on the stimpmeter in October) and pose the biggest challenge to a low score. Over the years the trees around the fairways will grow in and make the course even more challenging and optically beautiful. The course will surely rise further in the ratings over time.

October 27, 2017
8 / 10
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