Nick Dougherty eases in a birdie putt on Hole 5 “Notch” 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.
Three times European Tour Winner Nick Dougherty, accompanied by his coach Stuart Cartwright, selected Desert Springs Resort in favor of travelling to Dubai to complete a week-long winter training camp between 18th – 25th February in preparation for the new golfing season.
Recommend to him by Michael Welch, Head Coach at the Lee Westwood Golf Academy who had just completed their annual winter training camp for Eighty-one students at Desert Springs Resort, Nick commented:
“The location and host facilities were absolutely beyond our expectations and the accommodation provided was excellent.
The resort staff were overly helpful, friendly and amazing!”
Coach Stuart Cartwright looks on as Nick Dougherty plays his Tee shot on Hole 6 “The Gambler” on the championship Indiana course at Desert Springs.
The training camp utilised the excellent practice facilities at the Desert Springs Golf Academy where Nick was able to work with his coach and take advantage of the use of the Desert Springs short game academy.
A protégé of Nick Faldo, Nick had an exceptional amateur career winning numerous tournaments including the 1999 World Boys Championship and three Faldo Junior Series events.
Nick turned professional in 2001 and gained membership to the European Tour for 2002.
In his début season he finished 36th on the Order of Merit, and was named the Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year. He was hindered by glandular fever in 2003, and his 2004 season was also disappointing when he slipped to 97th on the Order of Merit.
In early 2005 he earned his first victory on the European Tour at the Caltex Masters in Singapore, going on to reach the top 100 of the Official World Golf Rankings in the middle of the year, and ended it in 15th place on the final European Tour Order of Merit.
Leader after the first round of the 107th U.S. Open at Oakmont Country Club with a two under par round of 68, Nick eventually finished the tournament in a tie for seventh place. This is, to date, his best finish in a major championship, and was also enough to gain automatic entry into the following years championship and the U.S. Masters.
Later that year he secured his second European Tour victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship and finished the season placed 11th on the Order of Merit.
“The resort is one of the best golf resorts I have been to in Europe. The facilities for practice are second to none and Desert Springs is a great place for players of all standards to come to improve their game and have fun at the same time.”
Nick Dougherty plays his approach shot into Hole 4 “Cinch” on the championship Indiana course at Desert Springs.
Coach Stuart Cartwright is part of the Mike Yorke Golf Academy team at Horne Park in the UK. The last six years have seen him progress his coaching career at great speed and 2011 saw two of England’s most talented European Tour players start working with Stuart. By the end of 2013 these two famous golfers have delivered over ten top ten finishes.
Stuart remarked of his experience at Desert Springs:
“Desert Springs provides the essentials to develop the skills of golfers from beginner to elite level. Rarely do you find such facilities across the world; Desert Springs is the number one choice for all aspiring golfers.”
Nick Dougherty plays his Tee shot on Hole 1 “Cactus Point” on the championship Indiana course at Desert Springs.
Asked if he would return to Desert Springs Nick responded:
“Yes I would, this has been a very pleasurable and beneficial training camp for me; thanks for your hospitality!”
Accommodation for Nick Dougherty and his Coach Stuart Cartwright was provided in the Pueblo Villas available at Desert Springs.
- 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
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 for European Tour and Ladies European Tour players and camps among the growing number of National Teams and Schools with their own golf academies and teams, currently estimated at around 90 in the UK. Visiting groups have included the Scottish Golf Union International Boys & Girls squad members, the National Squad of the Golf Union of Wales, the Irish Ladies Golf Union, golfing pupils from Hartpury College Golf School, 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 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 players have opportunities to swim, play tennis 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, townhouses 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;
- Cricket Academy training facilities comprise; a six 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