Happy Christmas to all our Clients!
We would like to wish all our clients a very happy and peaceful Christmas.
Living on the Costa del Sol, Christmas has a habit of creeping up on you rather later than back in Northern Europe.
We don’t have the usual reminders of endless Christmas marketing or scraping the frost off the windscreens to tell us that the seasons have changed. So much has happened this year and despite all the doom and gloom we are happy to say that 2013 was another year of growth for Golf Experience.
As those of you who have been here in the autumn will testify the weather has been spectacular with not a drop of rain since last April and yet the reservoirs are still almost full. It helps to have melting snow in April. So it has been ideal golfing weather.
Continued unrest in Egypt and beyond in competing holiday destinations has ensured that the Iberian peninsula has had a very buoyant season. Airlines continue to increase capacity into Malaga from all over Europe which makes the Costa del Sol an easy and inexpensive choice for the coming year.
Those green shoots. The UK golfer is buoyed by strong(er) sterling. The Irish have taken their medicine and while the after taste is lingering there is a feeling the worst may soon be over. Here on the Costa the sun is shining and property prices are on the up, thanks largely to buyers from some un-traditional markets (see below).
We absorbed a 13% hike in VAT on green fees in 2013 and with the pain being shared throughout the various parties (Golf clubs, Tour Operators and you the client) and despite predictions of doom, we survived its impact. So while there is no time for complacency it may be time for some optimism.
Have a great Christmas and we look forward to seeing you soon for some well deserved golf in the sun during 2014.
British Airways announce new Heathrow to Malaga Flight.
B.A. have announced a new daily Heathrow to Malaga service which is the first airline linking the LHR with Malaga. This is of particular benefit to long haul golfers from North America and Asia. All 6 London airports now have services to Malaga.
Ryanair opens up Morocco to Irish Golfers with Dublin to Marrakech flights.
Amelkis Golf Club Marrakesh.
From 2nd April, Ryanair will commence a bi-weekly flight from Dublin to Marrakesh, on Wednesdays and Sundays.
Golf Experience has put in place 2 fantastic golf packages based on 4 nights /5 days and 7 nights/8 days.
Details as follows:
- 4* Atlas Asni hotel 4 nights half-board accommodation
- Return airport and golf transfers each day
- 4 nights/5 days with 3 rounds of golf at the Palmeraie, the Amelkis and the Al Maaden or the Royalor
- 7 nights/8 days with 5 rounds of golf at the Palmerais X2, the Amelkis X2, the Al Maaden or the Royal
Atlas Asni Hotel – Marrakesh
Package based on 4 Nights/5 Days:
• April is High Season and the price per person per double room sharing is €566.40 / non-golfers price €201
• All of May, September and October: €537 per person sharing / non-golfers €177
• 1st June – 31st August is €533 per person / non-golfers €171
Rates based on 7 Nights/8 Days:
• April is High Season and the price per person per double room sharing is €914.50 / non-golfers pay just €315
• All of May, September and October: €862 per person sharing / non-golfers €271
• 1st June – 31st August is €855.50 per person sharing / non-golfers €262
Flights are available from €100 return – consult the Ryanair (new easy to use and fewer clicks) website !!
Car Hire Malaga Airport
Our car hire business with preferred partner, Espacar, continues to grow strongly mainly due to the fantastic service provided, in particular the Meet & Greet service at Malaga Airport.
You will be met in the Arrivals Hall and do not have to go to the car hire desks area or take a shuttle to an off-site depot. There is no queuing, which is a god-send to weary passengers anxious to get on the road and on the way to your accommodation or first tee.
Below is a picture taken of a queue in the car hire hall underneath Arrivals, where people have had to queue for up to 3 hours!
Clients tell us occasionally that they can get cheaper cars on-line. The problem with “cheaper” is that the real price will not become apparent until you have the keys in your hand. Hidden extras can add an additional 100% to the price originally quoted.
And by the time you factor in the cost of queuing and even making the reservation you will appreciate that at the end of the day our rates are probably the best value for money in the market. A quick 15-second phone call or email is all it takes to book a car.
An increasing number of our clients are arriving at Gibraltar Airport where we (Espacar) now have a permanent office just across the border. Tensions at the border continue to run high and while pedestrians are not normally affected, cars leaving “The Rock” can experience delays of up to 2 hours. It’s hard to believe that this can happen in 2013 within the EU. If it was the Pakistani / Afghan border you could understand but an internal EU border is a plague on both your houses and particularly the Spanish one.
The issue is complex but is fundamentally one of sovereignty and territorial waters but the solution is not to stop and search the 8,000 or so workers and tourists who cross into Gibraltar each day.
Queue to enter Gibraltar
Name Change for Flamingos Golf!
Flamingos Old – now Villa Padierna Golf Club
The golf resort widely known as Flamingos – home to the 3 golf courses Flamingos, Alferini and Tramores – will now be known as Villa Padierna Golf Club.
Malaga Provence Property Prices on the increase.
The good news that many of you have been eagerly awaiting. Its official, property prices on the Costa del Sol are finally rising.
For the second time in two weeks we have had positive figures relating to property prices in Malaga Provence (Costa del Sol). Figures from the National Institute of Statistics reveal that for the first time since the beginning of the crisis prices have increased.
Also figures from the Ministry of Public Works confirmed that the number of property transactions increased by 25% (year on year) in the Provence more than in any other region of Spain. A third and possibly more reliable source, a friend who installs kitchens, says that his business has turned the corner.
O’Grady’s Irish Pub & The Hogan Stand invite Golf Experience clients for a free pint.
Two of the Costa del Sol’s best established Irish Bars, the Hogan Stand in San Pedro and O’Grady’s in Puerto Banus are offering all Golf Experience clients a free pint on their next visit to the area. We will include the digital drinks voucher with your golf vouchers the next time you are travelling.
New Access Road to Malaga Airport
Car-renters note that there is a new access road into Malaga Airport which will shorten your journey. The exit is now direct from the A7 and directly connected to the airport’s Terminal 3. You may still use the old approach road but the new one is quicker.
Casa Tua Restaurant in Marbella’s Old Town
On a recent walk through the Old Town of Marbella recently, we came across a charming looking restaurant on Ortiz del Molinillo Street, which is the street with the Virgin statue at the top of it, a popular item on sightseers’ itineraries.
There we discovered that the chef’s wife is Catherine Guilfoyle from Kilkenny in Ireland so we decided to stop for dinner. We had the Surf & Turf and the Seabass and weren’t disappointed – the chef, Adriano, uses good quality ingredients such as black truffle, candy figs, cipollini onions, chianti mustard, saffron pearl barley, fresh artichokes, to mention a few. Our street table was on a slope and Catherine pointed out to us that the back legs of the chairs had been pared so that we would be level! The food was full of flavour, the wine married well with the food and we were looked after attentively and efficiently. Tel +34 951 712 227
Catherine Guilfoyle from Kilkenny & Adriano Visentin from Milan.
In other food related news the Malaga born Mitchelen star chef Dani García has opened a Deli Bar at Malaga Airport. It will specialise in typical Andalucian food – bocadillos and tappas and take-away or “take-on-board” food.
Golf Humour – true story.
Why I Mow My Own Yard!
Lee Trevino: a true story. You’ve gotta love him.
One day, shortly after joining the PGA tour in 1965, Lee Trevino, a professional golfer and married man, was at his home in Dallas, Texas mowing his front lawn, as he always did. A lady driving by in a big, shiny Cadillac stopped in front of his house, lowered the window and asked, “Excuse me, do you speak English?”
Lee responded, “Yes Ma’am, I do.”
The lady then asked, “What do you charge to do yard work?”
Lee said, “Well, the lady in this house lets me sleep with her.”
The lady hurriedly put the car into gear and sped off.
Rory vs the Robot.
2013 was something of an “Annus horribilis” for young Rory but one feels that 2014 will be better.
Now I know the www is full of golf videos but this is particularly funny. Watch the former world number 1 take on a robot and also see some interesting footage of him as a kid. He may have changed his clubs but the swing is exactly the same.