Located in the hills of Puerto Banus lies a treasure trove of relaxation and fun, Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club. This remarkable place offers a vast array of pleasurable pastimes for its guests to enjoy. For us today the focus is the Severiano Ballesteros designed golf course.
Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club is located in the prestigious town of Benahavis, midway between Marbella and Estepona. Los Arqueros golf course is noted locally as being a tough challenge. At 5667m from the back tees or 4321m from the forward tees the golf course plays much longer than the numbers suggest.
All of Seve’s golf courses have a reputation for being tough. Los Arqueros is a unique design in that it can play as tough as you want to make it. If your thought is to over power the golf course, smash drives and dominate the tiger lines then Los Arqueros will defend itself stoutly. If on the other hand you choose to unpick the golf course with well placed tee shots the golf course will be kind and yield plenty of birdie chances.
Always in excellent condition and very well presented, the green fee tariffs make Los Arqueros extraordinarily good value.
The clubhouse feels large, comfortable and airy leading to the terrace which itself has an inspiring view over the valley descending to the Mediterranean Sea in the distance. Upstairs in the clubhouse is the LA View Restaurant which is open for diners, both members and non members alike. The menu is tantalizing, whether you are looking for a light bite or something gastronomic you will be enthralled.
Pickleball courts, soon to open Padel Tennis and full Tennis are hugely popular at Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club as are its ten pin bowling alley, sports bar, and fully equipped gym! I think you will agree, there is a lot to like about Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club.
JW and I arrived in the car park an hour ahead of our time in order to catch up with Nicola Whelan the sales manager and Solheim Cup ambassador for Los Arqueros for a coffee and meet our playing partner for today, Gonzalo Sisto and his colleagues, Camila Di Sabato and Agostin Meneghini of Away to Golf. Our partners at Away to Golf who specialize in promoting Spanish golf in Latin America. Today Camila and Agostin will be drone pilots, camera operators, sound recordists and photographers as this is the first time that we will make a vlog about one of our reviews!
Graciously Nicola arranged for Agostin and Camila to take a guided tour of the clubhouse and facilities of which there are many. The atmosphere around the clubhouse terrace had a palpable positive buzz about it. A lot of smiling faces, groups of strangers talking to each other across the terrace exchanging stories of their escapades on the golf course. Very different from the dreadful fustiness often associated with Country Clubs of old.
Whilst talking golf with Nicola I suggested to her that Seve’s designs are known for beating up golfers. “Nonsense” Nicola challenged us, “Come on boys, it’s like shooting ducks in a barrel at your course (Mijas Golf), with fairways like prairies, but here, you are going to have to think a little bit, and then Los Arqueros will make you a better golfer. “You’ll see”.
Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club
Designer: Severiano Ballesteros
- Outdoor Terrace
- Changing Rooms
- Pro Shop
- Club Hire
- Buggy Hire
- Driving Range
- Short Game Practise area
- Fitness Centre
- Beauty Salon
- Tennis Club
- Tenpin Bowling and Sports Bar
- Estate agency and Rentals
The three of us cagily watched one another warm up on the putting green. I know John’s game backwards, he hits the ball unerringly straight with every club, he chips and putts well as befits his 1 handicap. He too knows my game, high, wide and handsome, JW knows he can out maneuver me around a thinking players course!
Gonzalo is the unknown quantity, playing from a 12 handicap today, he goes about his warm up like a player far more experienced than 12 handicap would suggest. I have faith in my old Mucka JW, no one negotiates a bet better than him.
After the briefest talks the bet was sealed. JW rolled over totally. I can only imagine that he was overcome by a strange sense of compassion towards his fellow golfers. Gonzalo got his 12 shots, he even agreed to give me one – crikey! The format today was to be American stableford, where 6 points are available on each hole with the winner claiming 4, runner up 2 and last place zero. A three way tie on the hole earns each player 2 points, a two way tie earns 3 points each, etc, it is the best format for allowing 3 players to play matchplay. If you have never tried it out, do so – great fun. The wager was the 19th Hole bar tab.
Off to the first tee we eagerly canter with our videographers in close attendance!
Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club Review
- Par 71
- White Tees 5667m
- Yellow Tees 5293m
- Blue Tees 5118m
- Red Tees 4773m
- Orange Tees 4321m
Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club Front Nine Holes
Par 4 Stroke Index 13 White Tees 347m Yellow Tees 333m Blue Tees 321m Red Tees 299m Orange Tees 290m
The first tee sits adjacent to the clubhouse terrace in clear view of those enjoying a libation or two. The starters hut sits close to the tee with bottles of divot filling sand ready for you to do your duty. The clock on the starters hut displays the time clear and bold, a nice touch that clearly worked as the groups of players were arriving in sequence 8 or 9 minutes ahead of their tee times.
The first tee offers a cracking view looking down the mountain valley out towards the sea. The first hole from the white tees is 347m today. A slender fairway poses the challenge, the green is not visible. On the hillside beyond the limits of the golf course is a road sign which marks the ideal line for your tee shot. The fairway runs flat from the tee to a point about 120m from the green whereupon it descends sharply to the green. On your left is out of bounds in the driving range, the rough on the right side of the fairway is tree lined, the ground falls steeply away descending 4m to the level of the ninth fairway traveling in the other direction.
JW who has played here a few times urged caution, “Mate don’t be an Idiot” he said, “put the driver away, this is a 4 iron for you which will leave you with a wedge down into the green.”. Both JW and Gonzalo selected 3 woods.
Every time I try to play the safe shot I make a mess of it. I missed the fairway on the right, my ball lost somewhere in the tree lined embankment. Luckily for me the embankment is marked with red stakes so I was able to drop a ball and continue with a penalty shot. Unable to see the green I used the road sign once again as my aiming point, but to no avail, my eight iron shot from 171m playing down into the valley careered dreadfully to the right into the hazard bringing my campaign on the first hole to a close.
JW made an uncharacteristic error, he too missed the fairway and came to rest in the bunker located in the rough on the right side at the top of the hill where the fairway runs down towards the green, with 144m to go his recovery shot fell 30m short of the green leaving him a chip and a couple of putts to make bogey.
If you miss the green long you will be punished. A bunker sits on the left flank where there is a little more room for error. The best mistake is to leave it short of the green.
Gonzalo summoned a high draw with his three wood, a most elegant start to the round. He finished at the top of the hill and hit a simple wedge to the heart of the green.
The greens are in lovely condition, with no blemishes. In the summer they allow the greens to retain a little “wool” to protect them from the blazing sun. In general the greens are small with modest aprons surrounding them. Often trouble, even serious trouble lurks within 5 or 10 paces of the putting surface. One benefit of small greens is that when you do hit the target you are going to present yourself with a makeable birdie opportunity, exactly as Gonzalo did. His birdie putt, although well rapped, came to rest half a meter short of the cup leaving a tap in for a hole winning par 4 Points for Gonzalo, 2 for JW, 0 for me, last place Leary, again!
Par 3 Stroke Index 17 White Tees 156m Yellow Tees 148m Blue Tees 135m Red Tees 121m Orange Tees 112m
The first of the par three holes. Easy on the eye, this hole plays downhill to the green. From the white tees today we have 156m. The green is broad and elliptical in shape.Large bunkers guard the front right and left of the putting surface. An attractive stone clad stream runs along the right side of the hole level with the centre line of the green waiting to catch careless tee shots.
The elevation of the tee reduces the playing distance of the hole by a considerable 20m, I select my 9 iron. A few glorious moments later my ball was nestled within 2m of the pin and my confidence restored to its ebullient peak!
JW, whilst walking towards his ball in the right hand bunker, tripped over a sprinkler head and performed a series of somersaults and backflips before reaching a standstill in a grass stained heap. Having made sure no damage was done, all of us present took a few moments to enjoy his misfortune and offer helpful tips on his gymnastic style.
A measure of his redoubtable character, he splashed his bunker shot to 3m and made a 2 putt bogey. Gonzalo, from the left hand bunker, thinned his bunker shot over the green and came to rest on the edge of the stream on the right of the green. An incredible up and down resulted in a bogey for him too and 1 point each, An easy 2 putt par secured 4 points for me.
Par 4 Stroke Index 3 White Tees 361m Yellow Tees 349m Blue Tees 340m Red Tees 323m Orange Tees 250m
Playing 359m today with a lake on the left requiring a carry of 260m to clear the entire body of water, A bunker on the right side of the fairway at 206m makes a safe line requiring your ball to fly 180m to reach dry land.
This is a tough driving hole which confronts you with a decision, take a risk to earn the chance of a reward or hit a safe tee shot but leave yourself a long second.
JW belted his driver with laser like straightness landing the ball in the narrowest part of the fairway whereupon it ran out another 20m to pass the far shore of the lake and leave an easy shot into the green.
I took a mighty flail at mine hoping to carry the entirety of the lake and again blocked it to the right. I came to rest at the bottom of the bank in the rough that separates the third and fourth hole amongst low hanging branches . I punched a low 4 iron under the canopies of the trees and by some divine luck my ball found the centre of the green!
Only after playing my shot did I notice another stone clad stream that starts 117m from the green on the right, crosses the fairway immediately in front of the green and follows the left edge of the putting surface and the cart path until it exits the golf course boundaries.
Gonzalo hit a decent drive, albeit a little off line to the right. He hit a good recovery shot which we watched as it fell short of the green on the left side. It took a huge bounce having pitched on the stone floor of the water hazard and disappeared forever.
Golf is a cruel sport!
Again this hole is defined by the tee shot. You have to decide upon a shot that you feel you can successfully execute most of the time. If you take a risk on this tee it is likely that the hole will punish you.
Par 4 Stroke Index 9 White Tees 311m Yellow Tees 302m Blue Tees 299m Red Tees 283m Orange Tees 260m
A short par 4 that deviates to the left and tempts you with a risky tee shot. Resist! For the big hitters the green is in range with a mighty drive, but you will have to hit a right to left shot into a fairway of ever decreasing width protected by out of bounds on the left , a series of 5 large bunkers on both sides from 90m out and a small tree that sits in the centre of the green opening. It’s not worth it, only Seve could pull off such a shot, and if he failed only Seve would have the skills to salvage his par.
The prudent way to play this hole is to hit your tee shot 220m on the centre right of the fairway. From the tee it looks very narrow. Indeed there is no room if you miss on the left, but, the good news is that it opens up significantly on the right .
If you find the right side of the hole you will have less than 100m remaining which allows you to hit a lofted iron which in turn means that the ornate tree in front of the green is no longer an issue.
This is a great hole offering many different ways to play it. A textbook par from Gonzalo earned him 4 points whilst JW and I earned a point piece with our inept bogies.
Par 3 Stroke Index 15 White Tees 154m Yellow Tees 144m Blue Tees 140m Red Tees 133m Orange Tees 129m
Another absolutely charming par 3. The tee is again elevated, the hole runs down the slope towards the green where for the final half of its length it climbs towards the green. This is a big green, the back third of which rises to a high point.
A bunker guards the front left, two on the front right. If you are going to make a mistake then opt for leaving it short of the green, by far the easiest spot from which to chip and putt to save par.
I went with a 7 iron which found the green. Gonzalo found the front left bunker and splashed out to within a metre to save his par and tie the hole with me.
Par 5 Stroke Index 5 White Tees 519m Yellow Tees 486m Blue Tees 463m Red Tees 436m Orange Tees 400m
A wave of ice cold terror swept over me as I climbed on to the tee box. “No” I thought to myself, “this must be a mistake, a hole more than half a km. long no wider than a necktie”.
The hole is set in a shallow valley with the ground rising on either side of the fairway framing the stripe cut grass giving contrast against the mature trees and bushes of the rough. Much thought has gone into making the golf course look good. It makes such a big difference to the overall experience when your surroundings are as well kept as these. Los Arqueros is set in a busy urbanization with many homes around its periphery, yet you do not see the buildings, your attention is captivated by the beauty of the surrounding fauna set against the symmetry of the accurately cut fairways and greens.
A lake sits on the right side filling the space between the boxes and the fairway, From the back tees it requires a knock of 180m to clear the far shore and find the safety of short grass.
From that point on the fairway runs rifle straight with the boundary fence marked by red stakes along its length and densely wooded rough on the right. On this occasion the tee shot is the easiest shot of the hole, the widest part of the fairway arrives at 180m from the tee and extends to 260m. A bunker on the right side of the fairway is a good line. It is the second shot that will decide your fate on this hole.
It’s a long winding buggy ride from the tee box to the fairway, as the fairway draws near we can see that there is more room than the view from the tee suggested.Three decent tee shots see us in line abreast in the fat part of the fairway, so far, so good. The test begins here, we each have 320, left to the green. We have to hit a long second shot simply to be sure of having a short iron into the green for the third.
It’s my honour, The fairway ahead of me is only 30m wide. I need to think about hitting a 7 iron leaving myself a further 7 iron from 160m to reach the green. The chances of success are not great, therefore I might as well abandon my conservative strategy and bash it with a three wood. It will either hook wildly out of bounds or scrabble a decent way up the fairway leaving a wedge shot with which to attack the pin.
A mighty lash with my least favorite club paid dividends propelling the ball 240m up the centre line of the fairway. Both JW and Gonzalo are not burdened with the head monsters that trouble me, for both of them “striping” a 3 wood up the fairway is a matter of course, and so they did!
After a decent drive and a cracking three wood, JW still has 143m to the heart of the green. His pure 8 iron dealt with it comfortably leaving himself less than 3m from the pin and a good chance of birdie.
From 120m Gonzalo found the dance floor. My effort from 90m found the small green leaving only 2m . Three miserable putts later and I manage to lose the hole to the easy pars of my opponents.
The sheer length, slope and narrowness of this hole makes it a sure fire 3 or even 4 shotter to reach the green. As frustrated as I was with my three putt bogey, a six on this tough hole can be considered a success!
Par 4 Stroke Index 11 White Tees 304m Yellow Tees 298m Blue Tees 282m Red Tees 255m Orange Tees 249m
A short par 4 with the green directly ahead of you, the flag fluttering in a beckoning manner. The cart path runs on the left side, beyond the cart path steep banking, largely barren, is marked with red stakes. The exceedingly slender fairway tempers ones urge to blast for the green. On the right of the fairway is a strip of densely wooded rough that runs down a red staked bank towards the 6th fairway. Two bunkers sit on the right edge of the fairway at 200m from the tee and make a good aiming point if you elect to play conservatively.
The order of the day here is to do whatever you can to keep it in play!
JW blocked one to the right heading for certain death, a tree stepped forward and kindly nudged his ball back to the fairways edge 120m from the green with a clear view of the tiny target.
I don’t have a club straight enough for this tee shot. I am screwed. So, “Bugger it”, I thought, “out with the big stick”. A mighty lash and the ball was on its way heading to the left bouncing on the 45 degree slope above the fairway with each bounce advancing towards the green and, thanks to gravity, back towards the fairway ultimately leaving me in the centre of the short grass with 30m to go! I took the risk and earned the reward!
Clearly stirred by my outrageous fortune Gonzalo hit a hook that even Peter Pan would shy away from. A penalty drop for Big G.
The green is dainty in dimension with trees and red stakes guarding each side and a bunker obscuring the front right. JW’s second shot from the first cut of rough was not a good contact and finished adjacent to my drive, Gonzalo managed to find the green in three and tied JW’s bogey. This time my risk and reward paid off, I chipped my second shot nice and close and secured a win.
Par 5 Stroke Index 1 White Tees 480m Yellow Tees 461m Blue Tees 458m Red Tees 436m Orange Tees 380m
This is considered the toughest hole on the golf course, with good reason. This cleverly designed, double dog leg, par 5 presents you with many different options. The key here is to select the right one and execute!
The tee shot is daunting. There is terminal trouble on both sides of the fairway. For the first 180m or so the fairway is murderously tight before it opens into the elbow of the first dogleg. A conservative drive can follow the left half of the fairway for up to 250m and find safe haven. The tiger line is cutting close to the right side.
Gonzalo repeated his mammoth hook of the previous hole and sent his golf ball to spend eternity with the squirrels and the rabbits. JW took an aggressive line and hit a cracker, I followed John knocking it slightly past him.
A conservative drive to the elbow on the left hand line makes the choice of second shot mercifully easy, a lay up shot of 150m to the fattest part of the fairway short of the deep, ravine that cuts across the fairway. The downside is that it leaves a shot of 130m or so into a very precarious green.
From Johns drive he had the same option, to lay up. The second option was to play aggressively, taking a line over the lake and untold trouble cutting the second corner which would see him carry over the big ravine and reduce his third shot less than 100m. JW’s three wood did all that was asked of it, finding safety on the right side of the fairway 90m from the target comfortably in the landing area. Two well thought out and well executed shots had taken the sting out this card eating hole!
From my position 20m further up from JW I too had multiple options, firstly, the lay up shot short of the ravine, less than 100m, the look on John’s face made it clear that option was not open to me. Option 2, a midiron that carries the ravine leaving 60m to the green from the fat part of the fairway. Option 3, with 239m to go was to hit my three wood and take on the full challenge of reaching the green and seeking a glorious eagle! No surprise to learn that I cocked it up with a hooked shot that was saved from exiting the golf course by the left hand bunker 60m short of the target.
The green is elevated 4m above us as we consider our 3rd shots. JW found the greenside right hand bunker. I came up short in the green side fringe which is deep enough to punish but not so deep as to permanently conceal your ball. We both failed to save par and tired the hole in bogey. Looking back up the fairway we both agree that recording a bogey here feels like a win!
This is a tough hole that will give a generous reward if you select the strategy that suits your game. If I had to play this hole 18 times I would never get tired of it, it is a brilliant piece of design.
Par 4 Stroke Index 7 White Tees 283m Yellow Tees 275m Blue Tees 263m Red Tees 250m Orange Tees 242m
Another straight par 4, running uphill which adds significantly to its indicated 283m. Compared to the recent holes this feels kind and inviting, Out of bounds is on the left, dense trees line the right, the fairways girth becomes welcoming from 200m which again gives you two distinct options. If 200m is too much of a stretch then hit your straightest club as far as you can. If you keep it on the short grass your reward is an uncomplicated shot into the green. If you choose your driver, then take heart, the wide bit starts at driver length making it as easy as possible for you to find with the ensuing reward of a short chip and the hope of a birdie.
The second shot, despite its shortness, does play considerably uphill and will certainly require one club extra. The green is large with a McKenzie style step running across the middle of it making the back of the green 1.5m higher than the front. Here Seve has designed the green to be the feature that defends the integrity of the hole.
JW recorded a classic birdie, while Gonzalo and I tied with par and net par. The scores at the halfway stage are 18 points each,
Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club Back Nine Holes
Par 4 Stroke Index 10 White Tees 330m Yellow Tees 311m Blue Tees 308m Red Tees 270m Orange Tees 256m
The first 180m of this hole are narrow, punitively so. The rocky slope above the cart path on the right instills fear making the tree lined rough on the left look more attractive! It’s a trap!
In fact the fairway opens out to become very generous on the right side if you can manage to propel it 180m or more. We learned that a good line is to hit a driver or three wood on a line just inside the cart path and knock it over the rocky hillside, provided the strike is decent you will find yourself in glorious fairway with a simple shot into the green
My 4 iron tee shot found the rough on the left bouncing down the steep bank. I was most relieved to see the red stakes marking it as a hazard so I dropped a ball and found the green centre for 3.
Gonzalo stroked his 3 wood into perfect position and found the front edge into 2. JW found the back edge in 2 and walked off with a bogey giving Gonzalo an easy 4 points with his par net birdie.
As we viewed the hole looking back from the green we agreed that the difficulty here was only in our perception. This short par 4 uses the topography of the rough adjacent to the fairway to instill tension. It’s that tension that makes the hole difficult!
Par 3 Stroke Index 14 White Tees 144m Yellow Tees 140m Blue Tees 134m Red Tees 120m Orange Tees 114m
The last few holes have been excellent examples of “ tough but fair”. Inserting a par three into the mix right now feels like Seve is giving us a few minutes to shake off the pressure and it is gratefully received!
Playing slightly uphill the gradient adds a club to the playing distance. Bunkers guard the front left and right flanks making the frontal access to the green most inviting. JW ascended to the tee, clearly overcome with excitement he took an usually rapid swing at the ball making contact with its uppermost dimple. Like a scolded puppy the ball ran for cover into a bush just ahead of the tee box and refused to come out.
Both Gonzalos 6 iron and my 8 iron failed to reach the dance floor, the elevation duped us. As we reach the green we can see how small the target is. The bunkers on the flanks of the green are complimented by a ring of trees encircling the back edge of the green which makes the hole very pretty to behold.
With the pin on the front of the green today, Gonzalo and I are short sided and faced with chips that are beyond our remit. We each make 4, in Gonzalos case a net three, another 4 points!
Par 4 Stroke Index 2 White Tees 320m Yellow Tees 314m Blue Tees 289m Red Tees 284m Orange Tees 260m
A par four of 312m playing from a mountain top tee box downhill into the valley. There is big, nasty, serious trouble on the left side of the hole, a gorge filled with trees and out of bounds on the right. The hour glass shaped fairway has two obvious landing areas, the first at 140m and the second at 200m. Attempting to drive the green would cause your scorecard to spontaneously combust – don’t do it.
If you elect to hit the easiest tee shot onto the first landing area then you will leave yourself with a more difficult second shot. Taking more risk and going for the second landing area at 200m is the right choice.
Our tee shots found the right side of the fairway in the second landing area. From that position the elevation to the green is such that only the top of the flag is visible. We were able to see that missing the green on the left would cause immense emotional damage, untold penalty strokes and the loss of another ball. Missing on the right is equally unattractive, so the only option is to decide upon the number, make sure to allow for the elevation and then find the middle of the green. In my case I had 131m to go.
Another small green awaits at the top of the hill. At the narrowest point it measures about 8 paces. None of us found the green with our second shot, we then compounded the error by failing to chip and putt to save par. This short, straight par 4 proved to be very difficult!
Par 5 Stroke Index 6 White Tees 458m Yellow Tees 437m Blue Tees 423m Red Tees 411m Orange Tees 361m
From the tee this is another hole that looks as tough as 1930’s Speakeasy doorman. The view from the tee makes you aim at the left side in order to avoid the perceived trouble on the right.
A large, deep barranca crossed the fairway 70m ahead of the tee, it doesn’t, or at least should not come into play but it certainly adds to the visual splendour! A rift cut into the mountain awaits on the right, pleasingly, for JW whose drive finished at the bottom of that valley, it is marked with red stakes. From this high point we look down the mountainside to the shoreline and beyond that the blue Mediterranean Sea. On the horizon clearly visible through the haze we are met with an incredible sight, the Atlas Mountains in North Africa. This is why golf on the Costa del Sol is so special, this is as good as it gets. This is paradise!
Poor JW and Gonzalo were badly mauled by this tough par 5, only I managed to record a par and secured a necessary 4 points.
Par 4 Stroke Index 18 White Tees 289m Yellow Tees 263m Blue Tees 255m Red Tees 235m Orange Tees 232m
A short par 4. Sounds like a welcome reprieve after the previous brutal par five, I don’t fancy it though. Trouble on the left, trouble on the right, it suckers you into taking the big stick and playing aggressively. Not me. Not today. My 4 iron was uncommonly well struck and arched gracefully down the centre of the fairway. Gonzalo’s trusty 3 wood described a gentle fade also landing in the centre, JW made it three.
The back nine holes are notably tighter than the front, and this hole feels like the narrowest so far! That is until we drive to the fairway and are delighted to see that it opens up significantly giving a landing area of about 70m wide as you reach 200m from the tee. Let us remember, this golf course is all about making the right plan, choosing the right shot and then executing. Every hole offers you an obvious landing place, some of the holes offer multiple choices. Play to the landing areas, don’t take on unduly difficult tee shots and this golf course will reward you.
I have 95m to go! playing a little downhill with large bunkers guarding the left and right flanks Missing the green over the back is a disaster, no room for errors.
As a result of three well placed tee shots we each recorded comfortable pars. I think we are starting to understand Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club a little better!
Par 4 Stroke Index 4 White Tees 376m Yellow Tees 345m Blue Tees 340m Red Tees 318m Orange Tees 258m
What a fantastic looking par 4 we have from this elevated tee! Out of bounds on the right, so far to the right that it does not matter. A bunker sits directly between the tee box and the green at 233m. Left of the bunker will take you down a bank to an adjacent hole, not a disaster. This is one of the few holes on the golf course that begs you to smash your driver with total abandon! Let’s do it!
Gonzalo nailed his best drive of the day along the right side of the fairway, John followed suit and I hit my signature low duck hook.
A stream runs across the fairway 80m from the tee. It is not visible from the tee box but does not matter as it does not come into play, it does make the hole look pretty through.
Missing the fairway on the left is bad. I was left with a horrible shot for my second. From the fairway both JW and Gonzalo came up short of the green. Gonzalo made an excellent chip and putt for par whilst JW and I could only manage feeble bogies.
Par 3 Stroke Index 16 White Tees 150m Yellow Tees 128m Blue Tees 109m Red Tees 97m Orange Tees 89m
“A par three with water”, those are not words you like to see in the same sentence.
The bright colours of the flowers adorning the natural area around the lake makes this hole astoundingly attractive. Dominated by the lake running on the left side of the hole and around the left of the green. A strip of fairway no more than 10 paces wide runs from the tee box to the green and separates the lake from the boundary fence. A bunker sits on the front approach to the green between the lake and the putting surface and will provide sanctuary for some mishit tee shots. Further bunkers on the right of the green add to the hostility. The only place you want to be after your tee shot is on the green.
None of us found the green. JW dunked his into the lake, Gonzalo found the front bunker and I finished just off the front edge. None of us made par, a half in bogey for Gonzalo and I is testament to how important it is to find the greens on these par three holes
Par 4 Stroke Index 12 White Tees 350m Yellow Tees 300m Blue Tees 272m Red Tees 248m Orange Tees 193m
Another tee shot that looks difficult . The lake that beautified the previous hole adds tension to the tee shot on this one. Lurking on the right side of the hole it requires a carry of 140m to safely traverse it. The cart path runs along the right edge of the dog leg hole. The hole turns to the right at 230m from the tee and makes an extraordinarily steep climb to the green. On the right of the cart path is marked with red stacks and rough leading to the boundary fence.
There is copious amounts of room on the left. Left of the fairway steep banking rises above you and also serves to keep any errant drives close to the fairway.
From the tee the danger appears close on the right, hence I took a defensive line up the left side. I hit a bad drive which scrambled along the fairway coming to rest on the left edge. Gonzalo took a direct line, but his ball flew with a curvature to the right and crossed the path into the deep trouble on the right of the car path. JW followed me to a safe position left of the fairway centre.
The ascent to the green is steep. My GPS device told me that I had 120m remaining. I selected my 9 iron allowing plenty for the slope. I hit one of the crispest irons of the day and watched my ball climb towards the green. I could barely believe it when my ball returned to earth 40m metres short of the green, such is the acuteness of the slope!
This hole demands the biggest drive you can summon, and then you are faced with the challenge of choosing a club to deal with the elevation. In this case adding one or two more clubs is not enough, add four clubs. if you find the green then it is an easy par.
I managed to save a par and secure 4 points which gave me a 1 point lead over Gonzalo going to the 18th tee.
Par 4 Stroke Index 8 White Tees 335m Yellow Tees 278m Blue Tees 268m Red Tees 254m Orange Tees 246m
The final hole, a dog leg to the right playing uphill is the final challenge. Out of bounds on the right, tree lined rough on the left. We know from the previous hole that the second shot into this green will play much longer than the number suggests, therefore we all agree that this hole too requires a big bash from the tee.
The opening to the green is clear of hazard. Bunkers lurk on the left and right sides but do allow safety for those of us whose second shots fail to reach the target.
We all three found the short grass of the putting surface.. JW from 112m came up a little short. Gonzalo from 100m found the centre right apron, a good shot. I had 95m metres to the flag, based upon previous experience I rounded that number up to 130m to allow for the climb to the green. My 9 iron flew sweetly off the club face and found the green centre leaving a 3m birdie putt from above the cup.
The tension is high. With only a point separating Gonzalo and I and both of us being close to the pin on the final hole we both feel that we have to sink our putts to claim victory.
We didn’t. Gonzalo three putted for a net par, I had two putts to win the match and made sure I used them!
Los Arqueros proves to be a formidable, fair and exceptionally beautiful place to be. All three of us have very different styles of playing golf, yet we were all able to devise a strategy that worked for us. A superb day at a superb golf course.
This golf course does not make unrealistic demands of you, irrespective of your skill level. Instead it asks you to consider the hole ahead of you and think about the best way for you to apply your skills to meet the challenge. Firstly, you need to choose the right tee boxes. For example, you need to be able to reach the par three greens comfortably. Once you are playing from the right tees then the golf course will give you multiple options on how to get the best out of it.
Los Arqueros proved to be a great golfing experience. The condition of the course and its presentation were first class. Seve has designed the course brilliantly to utilise the topography of the terrain. The course feels totally natural, as though it has always been here. There is no higher praise. This is a golf course that challenges your ability to think, plan and execute. Once the golf is done then you get to discover the wondrous array of facilities and activities available to members and guests at Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club. This is a great place, full of people enjoying an outdoor lifestyle in superb surroundings. A day at Los Arqueros Golf and Country Club is going to provide you with a very positive experience that you will want to repeat, often.
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