Golf - Articles

 

The Course at Cabopino

"Cape of Pines"

 

Cabopino golf has spectacular views
of the med.

"Many Happy Returns" is an appropriate message for a terrific new course on the Costa del Sol that celebrates its second birthday in April. In its two years of operation, over 80,000 rounds have been played - many of them by recidivist golfers forced to return after becoming hooked at first site. Breaking through such significant barriers gladdens the heart of Manager Andreas Hagemann, caddie masters Victoria and Sonia (and, most of all, the Madrid financiers behind the project), because seeing so many faces return and return is testimony to the professionalism and friendliness of the team at Cabopino.

One person who is not so glad with the courses precocious success, however, is green keeper Manuel Cabrera, who has had a mad couple of years dealing with the consequences of so many feet tramping around a still-maturing course. The fact that Cabopino is in such good condition as summer approaches is proof a job well done.

The course of the year has reflected the up and down nature of the fairways that head into the pine-covered hills above the marina that also bears the Cabopino name. When the 'Pay & Play' facility opened in Spring 2001, the green fees were dispatched from a temporary office in the car park; the 19th hole was a vending machine! No matter, little-known Spanish architect, Juan Ligues, may have designed the course to be a touch shorter than championship courses, but it sure keeps the handicappers coming back. The 320-metre third hole has a definite "wow" factor; a raised tee invites one to open ones shoulders to a wide landing area leaving a short approach to a raised green. It is a superb hole. The views down towards the twinkling Mediterranean can be quite a distraction on closing holes described as "Brilliant" by Sky Golf Presenter, David Livingstone, who was one of the first to play here.

Little by little, the facilities were increased and improved turning the course into a true club - albeit one with no members. The Cabopino Academy & Driving Range and Academy opened last summer and is now successfully run by the experienced professional, Carlos Dominguez. The clubhouse complex was completed in October 2001 containing an adequately stocked shop, caddy master's office and Ramiro's Restaurant - with views over the umbrella pines to the marina. Additionally, the ancillary facilities are such that Cabopino Golf has recently been named an "Authorised Fitting Centre" for Titleist, with a workshop capable of completing any fitting, repair and re-gripping work necessary.

If you haven't played Cabopino Golf yet, do so - you will soon understand why it enjoys so many happy returns.