The history of Golf in Spain

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The history of Golf in Spain

The Spanish Federation of Golf was founded in a private home on October 9, 1932. But Golf itself had been present in Spain for several decades already. In fact, the first golf club in Spain was founded in the island of Gran Canaria in 1891 ! Since then, many golf clubs opened and especially in Andalusia where today there are 92 golf courses, more than any other region in Spain. The country has 424 golf courses, one fifth of them are in Andalusia, which is remarkable.

So the British brought the sport to Spain on the XIX century and created the first Golf Club in Gran Canaria in 1891 in ‘Lomo del Polvo’ but they also had intentions to create another one in the Spanish peninsula. In 1904 the second Golf Club in Spain was created in Madrid, it was called the Madrid Polo Golf Club but it changed its location from Cuarenta Fanegas to Puerta de Hierro. The name also changed to Real Club Puerta de Hierro and it was here where very soon they started organizing the first official Golf tournaments in Spain.

Perhaps the third club in Spain was the Club de Golf de San Sebastián in the Basque Country. Then on 1916 the Real Club de Zarauz was created to complete the Golf offer in Spain before the 1920’s alongside with the Real Club de Golf de El Prat in Catalonia.

The first Golf Club in Andalusia was created in 1925 in the hands of the ‘Club de Campo de Málaga’ and since then Andalusia has created more golf clubs than any other autonomous community in Spain. In Andalusia there is a special place when it comes to Golf and luxury, Sotogrande. Golf in Sotogrande is the most important thing. There is a magnificent Golf Club called La Reserva Club Sotogrande, perhaps the best golf course in Andalusia and maybe in Spain, a club that is linked to the story of Joseph McMicking.

Joseph McMicking was on General MacArthur’s staff during World War II and a Colonel in the United States Army. After the war he became a millionaire after succeding with his companies in California. As a visionary, Joseph sent a close friend to explore the world in search for the most perfect spot for a golf course, he wanted a place with plenty of sun, unspoilt beaches and easy airport access. He found that place in Sotogrande, Andalusia, Spain.

On current days, Spain has 269,600 golf licenses, 1,600 of which are professionals. Andalusia is the region with the most amount of golf clubs with 92 followed by Catalonia and Castilly y León with 40, Comunidad Valenciana with 36, Madrid with 33 and the Canary Islands with 23 ! Spain has produced many professional golfers that have ended up being succesful world wide: Sergio García, Jon Rahm, Larrazabal, Miguel Ángel Jiménez, Jose María Olazabal, Severianos Ballesteros or Álvaro Velasco are only some of the names that Spain has offered to the world competitions.

By | 2019-10-07T16:18:49+00:00 October 7th, 2019|History|0 Comments

About the Author:

‘Dean Swift’ is a pen name: the author has been a soldier; he has worked in sales, TV, the making of films, as a teacher of English and history and a journalist. He is married with three grown-up children. They live in Spain.

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