As soon as you drive through the security gate at Oceanico Amendoeria, you get the sense that this is a special place. The long winding driveway leading up to the clubhouse built into the hill, gives a fantastic glimpse of the O’Connor course. The greeting and care taken on arrival allow you to settle into your surroundings immediately.
This venue is unlike anything you will find at other Algarve golf Resorts. Two championship courses with renowned designers on site are the start of the story. You will find a complimentary buggy for your golf which is a bit of a relief compared to many of the courses in this part of the world.
For us Irish golfers, you will find memorabilia dotted around the clubhouse that will bring back fond memories. Christy O’Connor Junior hitting ‘that 2 iron’ to the 18th at the Belfry in 1989 has pride of place on the wall along with Padraig holding aloft the Wanamaker in 2008.
Both courses hold their own challenges. The O’Connor Jr course winds its way around the valley making use of the numerous lakes and water features. Accuracy off the tee is a must and it is not a short course. The large greens however allow a little room for manoeuvre and it is certainly possible to score around this beautifully manicured track.
When Nick Faldo started to construct his ideas around his course at Amendoeira, he was sure to make you work for your score. The visual impact of this course is the first thing that captures the attention. In summer, lush green fairways are bordered by desert like waste areas and you could be forgiven for thinking you were teeing off in Arizona.
The course makes use of the natural undulations in the terrain and this surely adds to the challenge. Speedy greens, well placed hazards and a yardage off the backs of over 7,000 ensure a stern challenge for all golfers. Sir Nick remarked on the course, ‘”I like my courses to be challenging to whoever plays them. There might be easy holes in some places, but they are a challenge because you have to think about them, and that is what I am after’. He has surely succeeded but with a number of tees in play the course can be enjoyed by all levels.
The golf is sublime as it the accommodation. From 2 bedroom apartments to 4 bedroom villas you can find accommodation to suit your group. Each villa is beautifully finished with modern décor, fully functional kitchen and all Sky Sports channels on the TV. If you are here for a week, your accommodation will feel like home. The apartments are finished to the highest spec and has all the amenities you would wish for. An evening after golf can be spent on your private terrace area drinking a couple of cold beers and appreciating life.
After a couple of hours at Amendoeira, it is the small touches that make this place stand out from the standard Algarve Golf Resorts. On entry to the health suite, football jerseys from the plethora of teams that have stayed here for training camps can be found. The staff there tell fond stories of welcoming Dublin and Kerry gaelic football teams and their jerseys take pride of place.
Walk out of the health suite and you will find the academy course which is a real experience. Short holes from 60 to 100 yards provide a stern test to the imagination. Water hazards and bunkers are plentiful and the course is manicured as well as many championship venues. With floodlights allowing for a nighttime round this is a truly unforgettable experience.
The Amendoeira resort is just a short drive from the bright lights and nightlife of Albafuera. By keeping your golf and accommodation in the same location, you need travel as little or as much on this trip. What is certain is that you will be blown away by the quality and value that you receive by booking a trip to Amendoeira.
***3 Nights B&B with unlimited golf at Amendoeira including buggies from €285 per person***