Expectations were high amongst the 9 of us that made the hours trip North of Barcelona to the mountains outside the city of Girona.
PGA Catalunya is a baby of a course. It was opened for visitors in 1999 to huge excitement and has hosted 3 Spanish Opens to date. That being said, this is a course that divides opinion.
As a plot the course site is huge. I don’t remember being able to see another hole whilst playing the course, so every hole is its own event. They have made fantastic use of the consistent undulations with multiple elevated tee boxes, falling away to pristine looking greens, often surrounded by water. It makes for some epic golfing vistas.
It’s tough, hazards are beautifully placed and it’s a course that can be won or lost from the tee. If you’re a demon with a driver, you will score well here and if you play well you will walk off with great memories of the course.
But for me, this is a good course and not great and let’s be honest, with its ranking, it should be great.
Sadly, despite some lovely holes, such as 1, 3, 5, 11, 13 and 17, the course lacks charm and leaves you thinking “glad I played it, but I’m in no hurry to come back”. Any course with such reliance on one club for me is not one I’m rushing back to play. One added negative is there are a fair few holes with cranes and building sites right up to the fairways, which detracted from the occasion.
That said, it’s a course that if you’re in the Barcelona area, you should play. Stunning views, some of the most picturesque shots you’ll play in Europe, but it just lacks that something that’ll leave it etched on your mind.
I can’t finish this review without talking about 1 hole! The 13th here has made its way into my European Dream 18 holes! A stunning view from the tee box, it drops onto a pristine welcoming fairway offering you differing approach shots into an undulating island green! Stunning!
Many will walk away raving about this course, but that’s the beauty of Golf, one man’s treasure is another man’s trash. For me, this is good...it’s just not great!
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Date: February 20, 2020