Camiral Golf & Wellness, situated between Barcelona, Costa Brava and Girona, is excited to grow and develop alongside its loyal customers in 2023. This year, it is entering a new chapter by transforming into a renowned lifestyle resort that offers a truly holistic experience that integrates physical and mental health into a space that nurtures fulfilment through golf, leisure and low-density living. What once was Camiral is now Camiral Golf & Wellness, the new and improved #1 golf resort in Spain.
Its critically-acclaimed Stadium Course was developed 25 years ago. Opened in 1999, the course has since earned numerous accolades, while the venue’s most recent recognition was being listed among the top four golf resorts in continental Europe, solidifying its standing as one of the region’s premier destinations.
This spectacular location has hosted various PGA European Tour competitions and global events, including the European Tour Qualifying School (2008-2016), three Open de España events (2000, 2009, 2014) and the Sarazen World Open Championship (1999), just months after its inauguration. In 2005, the resort became a 36-hole venue with the opening of the Tour Course, a friendlier par 72 course, featuring wider, more forgiving fairways and strategically placed natural elements.
The investment into Camiral Golf & Wellness’ two courses, on-site amenities, facilities and technology, has meant the European Tour Destination has evolved at an astonishing pace. At its Golf Hub, hobbyists and athletes of all ages and skill sets can access coaching and instructional tools. There is swing analysis, personalised club fittings and game simulators, as well as the PGA Academy and a dedicated Junior Golf Academy. The Golf Hub also features one of Europe’s largest short game areas, a 2,000 square-metre putting and chipping green, featuring bunkers with five different sand types as well as different grass types, providing a unique global experience.
These amenities and reputation have converted Camiral Golf & Wellness into a strong candidate to host the Ryder Cup 2031.
Promoting a Holistic and Healthy Lifestyle
Since acquiring Camiral Golf & Wellness in 2008, Irish philanthropist and entrepreneur Denis O’Brien has expanded it beyond its roots in golf. Over the years, he has shaped the 36-hole resort into a lifestyle destination for people who enjoy golf, want to live in a natural environment and explore everything the region has to offer. Denis has a history of dedicating his time to organisations that promote personal growth through sports and is a devoted patron of Special Olympics Ireland, as well as a sponsor of Special Olympics throughout the Caribbean and Central America via Digicel Group.
Camiral Golf & Wellness entered 2023 with new high-quality facilities, cycling trails and a Wellness Centre, which provides guests with a truly luxurious experience with the added benefits of medically backed next-generation therapies usually only accessible at clinics or elite athlete facilities. 2023, also saw the addition of a brand-new Pilates Studio equipped with state-of-the-art apparatus from Spanish-founded Pilates brand ARREGON® to enable guests to target individual athletic needs while improving core strength, postural alignment and muscle balance with a series of tailored programmes.
Enhanced wellness and recovery programmes, including a new gastronomic offering with the organic wines created from Camiral Golf & Wellness’ own vineyards, allow visitors to unwind after tee time.
The landmark year in which Spain’s No.1 Golf Resort became Camiral Golf & Wellness, also saw the completion of its first Well Villa. Built following an innovative biophilic concept, it adds to the low-density residential developments in which modern design and integration with the surrounding natural environment are key to the concept.
Guests and residents are also encouraged to venture off-property to take advantage of additional activities close by, including trekking and skiing or sailing and diving off the coast of the Costa Brava. Denis has always recognised that Camiral Golf & Wellness is not just about training to win tournaments or perfecting your swing, it’s about developing a sense of community and friendship based on a shared love of the sport. The onsite team carries out this vision every day with new improvements to the resort designed to last a lifetime.
Promoting an Eco-Friendly World
A passion for sustainability is also evident across the recent endeavours at Camiral Golf & Wellness. For the past ten years, its golf courses have been awarded the GEO Certificate from the Golf Environment Organisation and received the IAGTO Sustainability Award for Nature Protection. It was also recognised in the EEI 2019-2020 Invasive Species Extinction report by the Generalitat de Catalunya and commended by the STRI Group for its dedication to eco-consciousness. In this vein, Camiral Golf & Wellness has pledged its commitment to mirror the European Green Deal and the EU Biodiversity Strategy until 2030.
Camiral relies on a number of smart, efficient systems to maintain its conservation efforts. The resort uses 100% recycled water to irrigate the golf courses and its new water purification system utilises almost 30% less water compared to older infrastructures. Water dispensers throughout the facility have eliminated the use of more than 50,000 plastic bottles annually and modern electric golf carts shrink yearly gas consumption. To ensure Camiral Golf & Wellness’ impact on its natural environment is minimal, an in-house biologist ensures that the biodiversity of local animals and plants is being upheld within the entire resort, including on its two championship courses.
Hotel Camiral, part of The Leading Hotels of the World, has reduced its energy consumption by 50% with a number of new, sustainable energy initiatives. State-of-the-art air conditioning units, an on-site power station and solar panels help cut more than 362 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year. The 5* hotel has renovated all its central air conditioning units too to optimise energy efficiency. In addition, a brand-new, 900 square-metre photovoltaic power station has been installed on the hotel’s roof, comprised of 316 solar panels.
These eco-friendly policies are echoed in Denis’s other properties like Quinta do Lago in Portugal. With many of his facilities GEO Certified and partnering with charities like the Wildlife Rescue Centre, he is an advocate for organic farming, native gardening and vegetation restoration.
Looking to 2024 and Beyond
For nearly two and a half decades, Camiral Golf & Wellness, as Camiral, has greatly evolved. Under the leadership of the O’Briens, it has advanced its onsite amenities, sustainability programmes and many more initiatives in recent years and has similar plans for the future, including the 3-hectare naturalised lake with a Lake Club and water sports offering. Although these changes may have inspired a new name, the resort’s continued commitment to golf has only solidified its prestigious status in the sports world.
Camiral Golf & Wellness remains a leading venue for international golf events and is eager for the opportunity to host many of these competitions in the years to come, not least of which The 2031 Ryder Cup.
The future looks bright for 2024 and beyond.