On the 1st tee, João Carlota, a former Portuguese U21 champion, was athletically warming up to show me around the Dom Pedro Old Course.
If ever there was a golf course which captured the hearts of golfers around the world then the South Course at Quinta do Lago is a perfect example.
Rarely has a golf course on The Algarve received so much speculation than the new version 2.0 North Course at Quinta do Lago. Perhaps it was because, in times of so called austerity, eye brows were raised when €10million was spent on a revamp to a course that was already one of the most popular in the region along with her sisters the South Course and Laranjal. Or perhaps more likely, it was a genius move to improve it and then be in the enviable position of having three world class championship courses under one roof so to speak.
If oranges could talk there would no doubt be a few choice words from them about how things have changed from the old days when this was a simple orange grove. These days the oranges trees line manicured fairways as the stunning Laranjal golf course winds its way through this fertile part of the Quinta do Lago estate.
Standing on the 17th tee of Vidago Palace Golf Course I had no indication of quite what I was in for. It had been quite a round up to that point; negotiating most of the cunningly placed creeks, coping with Augusta like slopes on the giant greens, and one wayward fairway wood aside, keeping to most of the fairways.
The world’s best golf courses offer an unrivaled playing experience; lush rolling fairways, glass quick sculpted greens and total respect.
Does it get any better? It does if you can enjoy a relaxing luxury spa after your round.
“Remember Andy, the greens here always slope towards the sea.” I was being reminded about this again by my playing partner, who knew every inch of this fabulous course, as I sized up yet another tricky putt, I suppose a little sigh was not out of order given the situation I found myself in.