Just over thirty years old, the Gaudi Reus Golf Club has been given a new lease of life since its renovation. Designed on a flat terrain, the course is characterized by its numerous lakes and a blooming vegetation between olive trees, pines and cork oaks. Set back from the Costa Daurada, this club with a good restaurant is ideal for a good day out away from the hustle and bustle of the Catalan beaches.
When you think of Antoni Gaudi, it’s not necessarily golf that immediately comes to mind! But rather the Sagrada Familia, the still unfinished cathedral, or the Güell Palace, the Casa Milà, the Casa Vicens, the Casa Batlló… these astonishing buildings of rare elegance lining the wide avenues of Barcelona, due to the genius of this visionary architect of Catalan modernism, the sublimation of Art Nouveau in vogue throughout Europe at the beginning of the 20th century.
So what is the relationship between the Gaudi Reus Golf Club and this brilliant artist? Quite simply because little Antoni was born in Reus on 25 June 1852, and the town, set back from the Costa Daurada, wished to pay tribute to this historic figure of Catalan art during the renovation of the Reus Golf Club, work that began a few years ago. However, this does not mean that we can imagine paraboloid, helicoid or conoidal shapes on the greens! Nor to discover multicoloured ceramic mosaics on the teeing grounds… The layout is fairly classic on flat ground, set back from Salou and Cambrils, popular holiday resorts south of Tarragona. In this club born in 1989 under the impulse of Antonio Quinterio, a Catalan businessman to whom an amateur tournament pays homage every beginning of January, pines, olive trees, a few cypresses and cork oaks, a very Mediterranean vegetation, clearly delimit the fairways imagined by Juan Cruz, an architect with a confidential golf production, while a dozen of water pieces come to oppose the intentions of many players. The first name of the club “Reus Aigüesverds” (green waters) was not by chance…
The alternating of long holes – 1 and 18 for example – where the tee shots require power to pass the obstacles with more technical holes offering birdie opportunities to those who know how to tame them gives a good rhythm to this design which deserves to be played on foot to discover and enjoy all its charms. The recent renovation of the course has given it a boost where the maintenance had been criticised. This period of work also allowed the clubhouse to be redesigned – the old one had burnt down – a much appreciated space which now offers an excellent table and a shaded terrace, appreciated at the end of the day. The new driving range has been installed on the old hole n°1, close to the club-house, offering a more convivial path for players before their game.
On the course, we quickly get into it with a bunker across the fairway on 1, which is not always easy to pass on the drive. On the next hole, the green is already protected by a small lake. On the third hole, the trees come closer to the fairway, especially on the left on the second shot… “Cuidado! A good warm-up before teeing off on the signature hole of this layout, a 127-metre par 3 with an island green that reminds us of the 17th at TPC Sawgrass (Florida) with all the drama that this implies… And the melody continues between the bunkers, the tight tee shots, the doglegs, the water often coming back close to the greens, all at a pleasant rhythm for those who do not give priority to their score… With its elevated green, bordered by two lakes and a few bunkers, the par 4 court on the 13th can benefit the bold, or not! And from the 16th onwards, things get more complicated with a very tortured green, followed by a very long par 3 and a last hole lined with water, sand and invasive branches along the fairway.
In June 2021, during the Gaudi Golf Open, an event of the Seve Ballesteros PGA Spain Tour, the young Victor Garcia Bravo, grandson of the great champion Miguel Angel Jimenez, made his professional debut on this Catalan course. Although his score was not set in stone, he did score a hole-in-one with a “jamon iberico” worth 1,000 euros. So, even if the kid didn’t light a cigar when he left the green, he still managed to win!
Even if the Golfystadors who regularly enjoy the charms of the Catalan courses – of which there are many in the Network – do not all claim to have achieved such exploits, they should quickly validate this newcomer under the sign of the big G. Before marvelling at Antoni Gaudi’s architectural treasures, these iconic works of art on the four corners of the Catalan capital. Far from the dogma of golf, you just have to look up to be moved by such beauty and genius.
Gaudi Reus Golf Club
Ctra de Cambrils, km 1,8
43206 Reus – Tarragona
Tél. : +34 977 752 725.
18 T, par 71, 5779 m., Juan Cruz – GCG (1990).