Between 31st January & 5th February, Richard King, Golf Elite Programme Manager & PGA Instructor, Paul Johnson Sport Performance & Excellence in Golf Coach and Joanne Ronald, Head of Department for Sport at Hartpury College Golf Academy, accompanied twenty-four students aged between 16 – 18 years for 5-days of warm weather winter training at the Desert Springs Resort, Europe’s only international award-winning luxury family resort and championship desert golf course in the Almanzora region of Almeria, Andalucía in south-east Spain.
Student Caitlin Evans-Brand remarked;
“The staff and facilities were extremely welcoming and made the week amazing!”
“The Indiana is an excellent course in superb condition!
We were all made to feel so welcome, what a week!”
“The Indiana is a great course in a spectacular environment with really kind, attentive and helpful staff.”
“Beautiful weather, fantastic facilities, and a faultless golf course, a great week!”
Those are the verdicts of Josh Marshall, Reece Swain and George Bryant, all full time students from the Hartpury College Golf Academy.
The Hartpury College Golf Academy provides players with the opportunity to develop their knowledge and golfing skills by offering regular coaching and playing time. PGA Professionals at Hartpury College provide the coaching and practice sessions, which take place around academic sessions, so that students are developing both their academic and golfing abilities.
A Hartpury College Golf student plays their approach shot on Hole 4 “Cinch” on the Indiana course at Desert Springs, Europe’s only international award-winning luxury family resort and championship desert golf course in the Almanzora region of Almeria, Andalucía in south-east Spain.
The training camp utilised the excellent practice facilities at the Desert Springs Golf Academy where the PGA Instructors were able provide one-to-one tuition and take advantage of the use of the Desert Springs short game academy.
A Hartpury College Golf Academy Student working on their putting technique at the Desert Springs Short Game Academy.
A Hartpury College Golf Academy student plays their approach shot into Hole 15 “Abyss” on the Indiana course at Desert Springs, Europe’s only international award-winning luxury family resort and championship desert golf course in the Almanzora region of Almeria, Andalucía in south-east Spain.
Richard King: Golf Elite Programme Manager & PGA Instructor at the Hartpury College Golf Academy remarked:
“Another fantastic tour to Desert Springs Resort where our students got to use the outstanding facilities and golf course in preparation for their competitive season. I just wish we could stay for longer!”
The students and officials were accommodated in some of the privately owned apartments normally reserved for holidays and short breaks at Desert Springs and the resort’s executive chef was on hand to cater for the special dietary requirements of individual players dining each evening in the ‘El Torrente’ Restaurant.
Accommodation for the Hartpury College Golf Academy students and coaches was provided in the Apartments available at Desert Springs Resort.
– For details of Golf & Sports Training Camps, Corporate Golf Events and Meetings at Desert Springs call 01242 680 116 or visit the website, www.almanzora.com
– To find out more about the Hartpury College Golf Academy visit the website www.hartpury.ac.uk
Additional background Information
Warm weather winter training camps at Desert Springs
Desert Springs, Europe’s only international award-winning luxury family resort and championship desert golf course, is proving to be one of the most popular destinations for warm weather winter training camps among the growing number of schools with their own golf academies and teams, currently estimated at around 90 in the UK. In addition to Hartpury College Golf Academy pupils, visiting groups have included golfing pupils from, Lee Westwood Golf Academy, Darren Clarke Golf School, Millfield School, Reading Blue Coat School at Sonning-on-Thames, King Edward’s School in Bath and Loretto School at Musselburgh near Edinburgh.
All school golf trips to Desert Springs are bespoke. If desired, the programme can include time away from the golf course for some local sightseeing in what many regard as ‘the real Spain.’
During their stay pupils have opportunities to swim, play tennis, football and use the gymnasium, trim trail, jogging tracks, paddle tennis and beach volley ball courts.
Desert Springs is easy to reach from the UK, thanks to three international airports. They are: Almeria Airport, around 40 minutes away by road; Murcia Airport, 80 minutes by car, and Alicante Airport which is a drive of less than two hours. Airlines currently flying to the region from the UK include easyJet, Monarch, Ryanair, Jet2, Jetair Fly and Thomas Cook.
Already well known as a resort specialising in family holidays, Desert Springs is gaining popularity as a centre for warm-weather training for cricketers and footballers, as well as golfers.
Accommodation is provided in the apartments and villas available for holidays and short breaks at Desert Springs. Meals are served in the resort’s Croc Restaurant, part of the family-friendly Crocodile Club that is geared up for a wide variety of leisure activities and the award winning El Torrente Restaurant at the Club House.
A spokesman for Desert Springs said that, depending on the size of the group and its requirements, the total cost of a four-day trip for warm weather training, including flights, would work out at between £350 and £400 per person.
The Desert Springs Resort & Golf Club
Facilities already completed and in use at Desert Springs include:
- a par 72 -18-hole USGA Indiana golf course designed by former Great Britain and Ireland Golf Team Captain Peter McEvoy who was inspired by the desert courses of Arizona and California.
- a golf academy whose PGA qualified teaching professionals cater for several international teams, for the women’s elite squads of the Golf Union of Wales and for many of the English County Union’s elite squads; PGA European Tour and LET players.
- two hard tennis courts, two paddle courts, beach volley ball and two football pitches – one is a full-size grass pitch; the other is designed for five-a-side games;
- a Cricket Academy with facilities that comprise; a nineteen bay grass wicket and run up with nets, a two bay artificial wicket with nets, a full length artificial grass wicket, a Professional Bola Bowling Machine with 28 ball feeder, a slip catch cradle and a specific hard standing area, which provides outside space for facilities such as a free weights gym, stretching mats and a medical area
- a Spanish colonial style Golf Club House with a lounge, bar, restaurant, locker rooms, TV and reading rooms, and a Ralph Lauren Golf Boutique;
- The Crocodile Club which provides family fun at the heart of the resort with pools, equipped sand play areas, a kid’s battery powered John Deere Gator circuit and a games room as well as a jacuzzi, sun lawns and a pool bar;
- a health and fitness club and spa.
In 2005 Desert Springs won the Daily Mail Best Almeria Award and the Bentley International Property Awards for the Best Spain Development and Best Architecture. In 2006, it was awarded the Spanish National Madera Verde Prize for Environmentally Sensitive Development. In 2007, the El Torrente Restaurant received the New Millennium International Gastronomy Award for the Tourist, Hotel and Catering Industry. This award was created by the Trade Leaders Club with the aim of distinguishing companies from all countries, for the outstanding quality of their products or services.
The climate of the Almanzora coastal region
Desert Springs takes it name from the region’s desert microclimate, which is unique in Europe. It has the warmest winter weather on the continent with an annual average of more than nine hours of daily sunshine and maximum daily temperatures of between 16°C (60°F) and 30°C (86°F) throughout the year. Annual rainfall is less than 200 mm. The Almanzora’s coastal waters are among the cleanest and warmest in Europe, attracting both fish and diving enthusiasts.
NOTE: High Resolution Images available upon request.
The Almanzora Group Ltd
The Manor, Boddington, Cheltenham,
Gloucestershire GL51 0TJ
Tel: +44 (0) 1242 680116