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More resort golf options in the Canary Islands

18 March, 2022
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More resort golf options in the Canary Islands

It’s two and a half years since we were in the Canary Islands to participate in a golf tournament at Anfi Tauro, after which we produced an article entitled Great Golf in Gran Canaria, detailing the many terrific golf facilities on that particular Atlantic island.

We thought we might broaden the scope of our look at golf across all the islands, publishing this article to cover the best resort options.

Before the pandemic took hold at the start of 2020, around 13 million people visited the Canary Islands every year so tourism (and golfing visitors) plays a big part in the economy of this special Spanish archipelago off the west coast of Morocco.

Across the largest five islands, there are more than twenty golfing layouts in operation and we currently feature what we consider to be the best sixteen courses, most of which also appear in our Top 100 listings for Spain.

ANFI TAURO In GRAN CANARIA


The 18-hole layout at Anfi Tauro Golfis a spectacular late 1980s Robert von Hagge design that was literally hewn from the volcanic rock landscape on the southwest coast of Gran Canaria. Founded by Norwegian entrepreneur Bjørn Lyng, the Anfi Group is a well-respected Vacation Membership company offering accommodation options both at the golf course and a few kilometres away at Anfi del Mar.

The Anfi Emerald Club and Anfi Opal Villas next to the course allow golfers to stay right on site but for those who want to keep the golf separate during their stay then there are four vacation clubs nearby at Anfi del Mar where suites come with a wide range of services, activities and tropical gardens. There’s also a shopping centre, clinic and wellness centre, along with pool bars and restaurants.

SALOBRE in GRAN CANARIA


Just a 15-minute drive to the east, the Salobre Hotel Resort & Serenity complex lies a bit in from the coast, in the foothills above Playa de Arguineguin, where two contrasting 18-hole courses comprise the main sporting activity at this location. The Old course was first to open at the start of the new millennium, followed by the New course in 2008. If ever you’d like to spend a day playing two completely different tracks at the same place then this is it!

Resort residents also have the use of the spa and sauna facilities, together with a wellness centre and fitness suite. There’s also a cycling centre and outdoor swimming pools for those with excess energy to dissipate. On the other hand, if you’d rather just daydream the day away then there are Balinese beds (and a complimentary bottle of cava) for hire, enabling you to chill out and take in the panoramic views of the ocean 3 kilometres away.

LOPESAN MELONERAS in GRAN CANARIA


Another 10-minute drive east of Salobre, Lopesam Meloneras Golf sits just outside Maspalomas, where the sandy splendour of the famous sand dunes extends to around a thousand acres. The course is laid out above the Pasito Blanco marina and, like the Old at Salobre, it’s a Ron Kirby design (from 2006) which is owned and operated by the Lopesan Hotel Group. The three nearest 5-star accommodation options are the Lopesan Costa Meloneras Resort, the Lopesan Villa del Conde Resort and the Lopesan Baobab Resort but there are also another eight group hotels on the island.

ABAMA in TENERIFE


Located between Callo Salvaje and Alcalá on the southwest coast of Tenerife, Abama Golfis a little removed from the main tourist traps of Los Cristianos and Las Americas. Dave Thomas designed the layout here in early 2000s, with fairways set out across sloping terrain that runs down to the 459-bedroom Ritz Carlton hotel on the coastline, which boasts an impressive array of wellness amenities including seven swimming pools and a fitness centre.

The Michelin-starred Japanese fusion restaurant Kabuki relocated to the clubhouse a few years ago and the sushi bar at these larger premises is open every evening except Tuesdays.

LAS AMERICAS in TENERIFE


In Tenerife, the course at Golf Las Americas arrived at the tail end of the golf boom in the 1990s and it’s one of the few designed by John Jacobs. Arranged as two loops of nine around a central clubhouse, Las Americas is the epitome of holiday golf in a buggy with the sun on your back and a smile on your face. The three-storey 5-star Hotel Las Madrigueras is situated next to the 4th fairway and guests are given complimentary golf buggies with direct access to the 1st tee from the hotel.

COSTA ADEJE in TENERIFE


Ten kilometres north along the TF-1 Autopista del Sur lies the 27-hole facility at Golf Costa Adeje, where the Pepe Gancedo-designed Championship course hosted three editions of the Tenerife Ladies Open between 2005 and 2009. The Hotel Suite Villa Maria, a complex of 78 one- and two-bedroom villas (some with outside jacuzzi) and three-bedroom villas with private pool, is only a 5-minute drive away, with residences situated inside the 9-hole Los Lagos short course.

TECINA in LA GOMERA


Away from the two main islands of Gran Canaria and Tenerife, you’ll find the other main golf resort in the Canary Islands on the small island of La Gomera, which you can access in under an hour via the ferry from Los Cristianos in Tenerife. It’s well worth the short journey as the course at Tecina Golf is a real delight to play. Designed by Martin Ebert when he was an associate of Donald Steele, the layout hosted eight editions of the Challenge de Espana event on the European Challenge Tour from 2009 to 2016.

For golfers who are not making just a day trip from Tenerife but wanting to stay longer, the 4-star Hotel Jardin Tecina has a wide range of facilities including 7 restaurants, 5 swimming pools, 5 tennis courts, 4 bars, 2 solariums and a fitness centre. Located in an unrivalled cliff top setting, amidst 70,000 square metres of botanical gardens, this Fred Olsen hotel certainly isn’t short of options for relaxation and leisure.

What about the other two main islands in the Canaries – Lanzarote and Fuerteventura – you might ask? Well, we produced another article entitled Golfing in Lanzarote and Fuerteventura in the winter of 2019, which gave an account of our visit to the six golf courses located on those two islands.

COSTA TEGUISE in LANZAROTE


Unfortunately, only one layout makes the cut for our Canary Islands ranking chart and that’s the John Harris-designed 18-hole layout at Costa Teguise Golf Club on Lanzarote, with this club offering playing packages for golfers staying at four nearby hotels: the Grand Teguise Playa, Melia Salinas, Los Socos Club Resort and Hotel Villa Vik.

The four courses on Fuerteventura all serve up a fun-filled round of golf, starting with the southernmost layout at Jandia, where holes are set out on either side of the imposing Barranco de Vinamar. The short Playitas course (with eight par threes) near Gran Tarajal features plenty of interesting green contouring while, closer to the resort of Caleta de Fuste, near neighbours Salinas de Antigua and Fuerteventura GC have their moments (but sadly, not often enough).

Jim McCann

Editor

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