It’s high time you bought a plot in paradise

Daniel O’Mahoney plays prospective buyer (and golf) at the resort

THE sun-kissed Algarve region is hardly Portugal’s best-kept secret, and certainly not among British holidaymakers. It shows as soon as you step off the plane – plastered around Faro airport are loud English adverts for Marmite and ketchup. But only a 20 minute drive after leaving baggage reclaim, you can be nestled in a luxurious enclave that feels a million miles from the humdrum and drizzle of home.

The Quinta do Lago resort has been around for over 40 years, but its brand hasn’t changed, making it a trusted name to deal with in property. Instead of piling holiday homes on top of each other, Quinta prides itself on the low-build density of its developments, giving each plot ample space for a private residence, while leaving the natural beauty of the surroundings untainted. Often, the only sound that can be heard is a golf buggy whistling by.

The first set of 26 empty land plots in over a decade are now available, ranging from 2,000 to 3,000sqm in the San Lorenzo North corner of the resort. The show villa demonstrates the potential – it’s a stunning modern home with tasteful Moorish influences and a remarkable, Tardis-like expanding interior.

Everything about Quinta is tailored to the personal requirements of its residents, especially since the addition of its concierge service last February. They can book a table at the local Michelin-starred restaurant, or organise a helicopter for a hop up to Lisbon, but they’re just as happy to fetch a few pints of fresh goat’s milk. I didn’t have any meetings to jet off to (or a burning desire to make my own ricotta), so I opted for a breath-taking helicopter flight over the sprawling Ria Formosa nature reserve that runs along the Atlantic coastline. Landing on a makeshift helipad on the golf course, I felt very James Bond – like 007 , I headed straight for the bar.

And then there’s the golf. Quinta do Lago’s golfing pedigree speaks for itself – the resort’s South Course has hosted the Portuguese Open eight times. There are two further courses on the resort, and a driving range overlooking a tree-lined valley. It’s a keen golfer’s paradise. Luckily for novices like myself, there’s help at hand as Paul McGinley, 2014 Ryder Cup captain, has his own academy on resort.

It’s an exciting time for buyers at the moment, too. While there are limits on height and build density, you’re otherwise given complete freedom when it comes to designing your dream home. Purchase options include “Turnkey” where homes come readymade; “Plot and Project”, an empty plot while Quinta helps with design and construction; or “Plot Only” for those wanting to go it alone.

There’s an undeniable tranquillity at Quinta do Lago, a location that prides itself on being whatever you want it to be – a luxurious holiday getaway, or even a new home.

For more information, call Quinta do Lago Real Estate on +351289392754 or visit