The Stadium Course at PGA Catalunya Resort is a terrific, tight, tough test of golf that will challenge any and all golfers. It's Europe's answer to TPC Sawgrass.
Situated on the hills of the PGA Catalunya Resort, 50 miles from Barcelona and just 12 miles from the Costa Brava coastline, the Stadium Course takes you on an undulating tour of the Girona landscape accompanied by views of the neighboring Pyrenees. Large green complexes protected by sand and water await you, following several elevation changes and tree-lined dog-legs.
Built in 1999 to test the world's top professionals and host high-profile events, the Stadium Course may be located on a resort, but don't make the mistake of thinking this is a typical resort-style golf course.
The overwhelming feeling you experience on the Stadium Course is stepping up to each hole and taking a deep breath, both enjoying the sheer beauty of the design and surroundings, whilst also preparing yourself for tough test ahead. The course begins that way, and continues to impress throughout the middle part of the round, before ending with a stretch demanding finishing holes.
Whilst each hole is different and presents a different test, there were a couple of holes that stood out. The straight-away par-5 third hole demands 5 quality shots to walk to the next hole damage-free. An elevated tee shot leads you down the corridor of trees before introducing you to a green, bordered on two sides by a intimidating lake. The large green offers some restbite, but at this early stage of the round, this hole certainly sets the tone of the course.
On the back nine, most locals and players consider the 13th the signature hole of the Stadium course. Whilst the hole is stunning, with an island green and wonderful vista of the area, we thought the par-3 eleventh hole deserved the signature hole designation. Stretching up to 180-yards downhill, the green backs up to the lake that tests your mental strength on several holes.
Again, the green is large, but the shot is a testing one. Judging the wind, and the elevation change is just the beginning. Enjoy the view, take a photo and then try your best to enjoy what is a breathtaking, but challenging, par-3.
The Stadium Course at PGA Catalunya is one of two courses on the resort, along with the Tour course. It is with that design, that golfers pick their poison. The Stadium course tests and inspires in the same manner that a comfortable seat on a rollercoaster would provide a luxurious, thrilling, heart-racing experience. In our opinion, holes 11, 12 and 13 are worth the price of admission!