Friday 15 March 2019 12:35 pm

Holiday Homes: We visit the resort in Portugal that's out to prove that resort golf doesn't have to be amateur hour

If you’re serious about golf, but would also like a place in the sun, it’s often hard to find a golf resort with a course that aims above pitch and putt. Monte Rei, a prestigious resort in Portugal in one of Europe’s most sought after golfing destinations, is trying to change all that and be the holiday hotspot of choice for passionate golfers.

It helps that it’s home to a par 72 Jack Nicklaus Signature Championship golf course, ranked number one in Portugal. Located on the eastern Algarve, it’s beautiful, too, blooming with rich flora and fauna, abundant wildlife, bucolic scenery and charming rusticity. If you can resist taking a break from perfecting your backswing, you’ll be pleased to find historic sea-front towns, a treasured National Park and uncrowded beaches, including the bustling town of Tavira set either side of the Gilão River, the glorious Fabrica beach, boutique Praia Verde hotel and charming sun-downer spot Guarita Terrace.

Overlooking the 18th hole, Monte Rei has just launched its Clubhouse Residences, marking its first step into an ambitious future, with the aim to be completed in around five years’ time. Situated in close proximity to the Clubhouse and its collection of bars, restaurants and pro-shop (for all your golfing needs), the community of 24 two-bed apartments and 16 penthouses are being sold fully furnished with interiors by award-winning Lisbon firm Saaranha & Vasconcelos. Each one will have access to a large heated swimming pool, gym, special owner services and ocean or course views. Buyers will also have access to the resort’s three restaurants, tennis courts, swimming pools and wellness centre as well as a concierge service.

New residences will only take up 8 per cent of the site to preserve its tranquil atmosphere

The fully kitted-out three bedroom showroom, which is also an apartment for sale, is vast, with natural light flooding through from the floor-to-ceiling windows and neutral décor. Most of the two bedrooms are around 2,100sqft, yet these are relatively modest considering what has come before.

Aerial view of Monte Rei from the south 

“The new Clubhouse Residences address a demand for smaller luxury units in a prime position at Monte Rei,” Brennon Nicholas, its commercial director of real estate, says. “This year will see construction start on our second Jack Nicklaus golf course, which will cement our position as one of Portugal's leading golf resorts.”

New residences will only take up 8 per cent of the site to preserve its tranquil atmosphere.

Prices for two bedroom apartments start from €820,000, but, if you’re unsure whether you’ll be getting value for money, further significant investment is being made to the resort’s infrastructure and services, including an all-suite boutique hotel and spa, hotel village with shops and restaurants, and a Beach Club with pool, dining areas and a bar set on an enviable ocean-fronting plot.

A CGI of the penthouse building at Monte Rei

Easily accessible via Faro Airport, Monte Rei is just 20 minutes from the Spanish border, an hour and a half from Seville and a three-hour drive from Lisbon. But if you’re still not sold on Monte Rei you can always stay on-resort until you make up your mind. After a couple of rounds on the golf course, it’ll be the least taxing house-hunting you’ve ever done.

Visit or follow Monte Rei on Instagram @montereiresort