Located a few kilometres to the west of Maspalomas on the southwest coast of Gran Canaria, the Anfi Tauro Golf Course is one of Spain’s hidden gems that was destined for a place in the Spanish Top 100 rankings.
Anfi Tauro was a gargantuan design achievement from the firm of von Hagge, Smelek & Baril, who spent years in the planning phase with the late owner and Norwegian industrialist Byorn Lyng. The golf course is at the heart of the Anfi Tauro resort and residential development and it’s set with a contrasting backdrop of dramatic, dark, volcanic mountains and the shimmering aquamarine Atlantic Ocean.
The build project was considered to be one of the most ambitious ever attempted in Europe and it literally required the movement of mountains. More than three million cubic metres of earth were shifted to create today’s emerald fairways that snake across ground that was formerly barren rock.
Nine holes first opened for play in 2006 and twelve months later the second nine came on stream. The result is an 18-hole course that bears more than a passing resemblance to an Arizonan desert course with craggy rock formations and vast sandy waste areas that are punctuated by three lakes.
With five tees in play, Anfi Tauro can be stretched from the gentle 4,448-metre forward tees to a stern 6,325 metres from the tips. Factor in the ever-changing wind and you’ll find the Anfi Tauro golfing test is rather exacting. There is interest aplenty here for even the most demanding golfer but we particularly like the one-shot holes, especially the 6th which plays straight into the prevailing Atlantic wind and also the 13th, which is literally cut into the side of the mountain where an old fashioned stone wall on the left serves as a hard reminder to keep your ball to the right. The Tauro Valley provides a most remarkable setting for what is a golf course design achievement par excellence, so we doff our hat to von Hagge, Smelek & Baril.