Like a perfectly paired wine with a meal, the refined and subtle sophistication of golf lends itself to the company of high quality food. I’ve chosen three wonderful hotels where golf and fine dining go hand in hand.
Vila Vita Parc
The Algarve has been synonymous with golf since the great Sir Henry Cotton built his flagship course in 1966, and the five-star Vila Vita Parc Resort more than lives up to its hallowed location. Part of the ‘Leading Hotels of the World’ collection, its deluxe accommodation offers private gardens and sublime clifftop views.
Golf on Your Doorstep
Not only does the hotel have its own driving range, 18-hole putting green and 9-hole pitch-and-putt course, it can also organise trips to the other world-class courses in the area. If your swing’s a bit on the rusty side, there are plenty of coaching opportunities on hand.
Stars of the Ocean
The resort’s Ocean restaurant has been bestowed with two Michelin stars since 2011. It serves mature, seasonal food against the backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean on one side, and an impressive display of vintage wines on the other. Paired with a rich Portuguese red, the black pork and artichokes are quite frankly worth the trip in their own right.
St. Regis Mardavall
As we argue in our Destination Guide, Mallorca has much more to offer than initially meets the eye, and the St. Regis Mardavall epitomises this surprisingly understated refinement. Its airy, palatial rooms and state-of-the-art spa provide the peace and pampering you deserve, all within easy reach of the capital.
Tradition and Innovation
A complimentary shuttle takes guests to and from the Arabella golf complex, which comprises an impressive set of four courses (including one of the oldest greens on Mallorca, alongside the newest). Refurbished in February 2018, this really is top of the range play.
Fee Fi Fo Fum…
It’s become a cliché to say that fine dining restaurants make the best of local ingredients, but it’s impossible to avoid that conclusion when dining at El Fum. In classic island tradition, this one-starred establishment puts langoustine, sea bass, octopus and oysters in prime position, crafting sophisticated dishes that linger in the memory.
Ritz-Carlton, Abama Tenerife
Citadel of Dreams
Modelled on a Moorish citadel, the Ritz-Carlton, Abama is a world unto itself, offering historic, luxurious splendour – and seven swimming pools! Like the flag of some lost Edenic country, the green of the golf course gives way to the red sandstone of the hotel, the gold strip of the beach, and the blue glow of the sea.
Walk the Walk
The Abama Golf course is not for the faint-hearted. One of the toughest greens on the island, it’s a 72 par, 18-hole obstacle course of bunkers and water hazards, designed by Dave Thomas of Ryder Cup fame. (But don’t worry – the hotel has a luxury spa for easing aching muscles after all that hard work.)
A Constellation of Stars
The hotel has two Michelin-starred restaurants (as if one wasn’t enough…). The two-starred M.B. serves Basque cuisine with a complex edge, while the one-starred Kabuki takes its inspiration from the ancient culinary traditions of Japan. If the idea of Iberian pork with yakiniku sauce – a spicy concoction of mirin, sake and apple – doesn’t whet your appetite, then I don’t know what will.