An odd course sandwiched between two major roads, the PGA Catalunya Resort was created by European Golf Design in collaboration with Neil Coles and Angel Gallardo and is used regularly as a tournament host or for the qualifying stages of Professional tour school. The site itself is quite steep, and being lined with tall pines makes the test from the tee quite exacting. The combination of heavy slopes and abundant trees also mean the course can suffer with poor conditions and a lack of turf growth, particularly away from tournament times when golf carts are an encouraged mode of transport. The design in general terms is passable, there isn't anything new or daring but most of the holes are inoffensive and decent enough for the pay-for-play crowd in these parts of Spain.
For serious golfers there isn't much here to get excited about. Some better areas include the 2nd hole, which features a dramatic approach across a wild ravine where anything short is dead. The 9th has a lovely green site at the end of a fairway that tumbles then rises again toward the target. On the back nine the valley par three 16th, to a shallow green, is not bad but mostly the golf through the latter half is dull and quite predictably dominated by water.
Built by the PGA to be available for PGA purposes, this golf course had to be able to challenge the better players but is marketed at the average golfer as an opportunity to test themselves on a 'real' tour layout. The designers accommodated the amateur via the use of six tee boxes, which often stretch a distance down the fairway. Playing from the front tees may not be a 'real' tour experience, but it will at least make a game here more bearable.
Update - since our visit in 2004 the resort has added a second course, 5-star hotel and vineyard.