The Oceanico’s Vilamoura Golf Resort in Vilamoura, Algarve, Portugal, already with four championship courses in its inventory, including Frank Pennink’s outstanding Old Course, had an established reputation for quality golf development and a particular sensitivity to protecting the environment. Expectations were high that the fifth layout, designed by Arnold Palmer, would be special, but not even the most optimistic anticipated the masterpiece that resulted.
The Victoria Golf Course, which covers some 90 hectares, is an 18-hole, par 72 championship layout, measuring 6.560 meters (7,105 yards) from the back tees, is one of the best and most sophisticated golf courses in Europe, every care has been taken to ensure the preservation of the wetlands and the typical vegetation of carob, olive and almond trees. It is a links style course and the several man-made lakes provide hazards for the players and also serve as water reservoirs for irrigation. With 5 or 6 tees per hole, extensive water obstacles, wide and undulating fairways, well positioned bunkers; the Victoria golf course will reward heroic and ambitious shots. In addition there is an exceptional driving range and a putting green of some 2,500m².
One extraordinary fact concerning Victoria is that the Palmer design team masterly created 18 greens with totally different shapes and sizes. In 2005, the Victoria Golf Course was the host for the World Cup, where some of the world best players participated. In October 2010, from the 14th to the 17th, the Victoria Golf Course will be for the fourth consecutive time, host of the Portugal Masters of the European Tour.
Sahalee was designed by noted golf course architect Ted Robinson with later renovations by...