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Spain: Majorca


3


Son Gual Son Gual, in the hills to the east of Palma


within minutes of the airport, is the smartest club on the island. Highly rated in Europe’s top 100, it owes its existence to double-glazing magnate, Adam Pamer, a golf-mad German who transformed an old family estate into a course worthy of championship play. The handsome palacio at its heart is the symbol of times past while the imaginative, sweeping layout is the shape of things to come. The new-build price tag in the late noughties was £30m, much of it well spent on earth shifting, landscaping and drainage. It incorporates protected areas of wild flowers, vineyards, 800 veteran olive trees, extensive lakes and a waterfall, into a fully paid-up American design. The inviting fairways, large tee boxes and target greens, with collars of semi-rough, conceal a sterner challenge than first sightings suggest. Its nearest neighbour is Son Antem, a commercial complex with the on-site, 215- room Mallorca Marriott, and two 18-hole courses. Son Antem’s West course, which opened in 2001, is five years younger and much tighter than its East. It’s laid out in two loops, peaking with a daunting dogleg climax along the lake shore at the 18th. son-gual.com


countrybycountry.com


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