Santa Ponsa I

Located in the southwest corner of Mallorca, Spain’s largest Balearic Island, lies the Santa Ponsa 1 golf course, one of the island’s premier golfing destinations.

Opened in 1977, Santa Ponsa 1 is part of a wider Santa Ponsa golf resort complex consisting of three courses and a four-star hotel.

With its championship pedigree, stunning scenery, and enjoyable layout, Santa Ponsa 1 offers golfers of all abilities an unforgettable round.

Course Overview

Santa Ponsa I Overview

Santa Ponsa 1 is an 18-hole, par 72 golf course measuring 6,542 meters from the championship tees.

Designed by renowned Italian golf architect Folco Nardi, the layout features wide and forgiving fairways, strategic bunkering, eleven lakes that come into play on nine holes, and expansive views of the surrounding Tramuntana Mountains.

Its signature hole is the testing par-4 16th, a dogleg left with an intimidating lake running the length of the right side. Santa Ponsa 1 has hosted numerous professional tournaments since opening, including six editions of the European Tour’s Balearic Open between 1988 and 1998.

Amenities and Facilities

Golf Cart Majorca 1

In addition to the main 18-hole course, the Santa Ponsa resort boasts excellent practice facilities including a 250-meter driving range, chipping and bunker areas, and two putting greens.

Other amenities include electric and pull trolleys for hire, club and shoe rental, lessons with PGA-certified professionals, and a well-stocked pro shop.

The clubhouse offers locker rooms, a restaurant, a bar, and poolside terraces to relax on post-round.

Course Layout and Design

Santa Ponsa 1 begins gently with a straightforward par-4 opener and four reachable par-5s on the front nine. The back nine builds in difficulty and features stronger doglegs and more water hazards.

Elevation changes are minimal, but Nardi incorporated subtle undulations, mounds, and swales into the landscape. Mature trees including pine, olive, and almond frame most holes.

Greens are large and receptive, but feature plenty of tricky tiers and slopes. With five sets of tees offered, Santa Ponsa 1 suits golfers across the handicap spectrum.

The open nature of the layout and expansive fairways allow big hitters to swing freely while higher handicappers can play safely away from trouble.

Playing Experience

Visitors indicate Santa Ponsa 1 offers an enjoyable, scenic, and accessible round for all golfing abilities. Its fairways are among the most generous on the island, enabling players to rip into drives and approach shots stress-free.

Water hazards and strategic bunkering provide variety but are not overly penal. The course requires sound positional play and course management rather than raw power or shot-making virtuosity.

The par-4 closing hole is a great risk-reward finish and previously hosted an epic six-hole playoff between Seve Ballesteros and Jesper Parnevik.

Overall, Santa Ponsa 1 strikes a fine balance between challenge and playability.

Conditions and Maintenance

Golf Green Majorca 2

Recent visitors suggest course conditions at Santa Ponsa 1 are a mixed bag. While some describe the course as being in good overall shape, others cite issues with unrepaired pitch marks, divot scars, poor bunker conditions, and weedy rough.

As a 36-year-old layout, Santa Ponsa 1 perhaps shows its age in places and may benefit from investment in upgraded maintenance programs and equipment.

That said, keen green fees and the beautiful natural setting help offset any conditioning shortcomings for most players.

Scenery and Atmosphere

Santa Ponsa 1’s pièce de résistance is its sublime natural beauty and mountain vistas, especially on the inward nine. The peaceful setting coupled with multiple lakes, olive and pine trees, plus the arid Mallorcan landscape in the distance makes for a visually breathtaking round.

The course offers a pleasant serenity; one can hear only birdsong, the breeze through the trees, and the strike of club on ball.

Architect Nardi seamlessly integrated the routing into the existing terrain and foliage. Santa Ponsa 1 certainly conjures up vivid sensations of playing Mediterranean golf at its purest.

Local Knowledge and Tips

Measuring a whopping 590 meters from the tips, the par-5 10th hole is one of the longest in Europe. Selecting the correct tee box is vital on this beast.

Visitors suggest higher handicappers play it as a three-shot hole and lay up short of the lake that guards the final third of the fairway

The 16th may be Santa Ponsa’s signature, but the equally testing par-4 18th is no easy finish. Shot placement is paramount in the approach to avoid a tricky creek. Again, higher handicappers should resist the temptation to go for the green in two shots.

Hole Distance, Par & Handicap

HoleDistance (m)ParHandicap

Customer Service and Staff

The overwhelming consensus is that Santa Ponsa 1 has friendly and welcoming staff that enhance the overall experience.

Players complement the relaxed atmosphere and flexibility shown over starting times and allowing juniors to play free of charge on the front nine. The head professional is singled out for his exemplary service and patient instruction.

Golfers needing to rent equipment or book lessons are consistently impressed with the attention to detail shown by the pro shop team.

Value for Money

Green fees at Santa Ponsa 1 offer excellent value compared to other Mallorcan courses. Currently, around €100 in peak season for 18 holes, playing this former European Tour venue and Balearic Open host represents a great deal. Off-peak is a round €70.

The club offers attractive discounts for juniors, seniors, and multiple-round packages.

When factoring in the beautiful natural setting, Santa Ponsa 1 provides a first-rate golfing experience at an affordable price. Spend a little more on a buggy rental to enjoy the scenic holes with less walking.


Santa Ponsa 1 is a charming championship golf course that delivers variety, beauty, and enjoyment in ample quantities. This revered Mallorcan layout will delight golfers with its memorable design, glorious mountain vistas, and superlative customer service.

Any conditioning issues should not detract from the overall playing experience. With off-peak tee times starting from €60, Santa Ponsa 1 remains outstanding value given its history and pedigree.

A visit here proves why Mallorca is one of Europe’s premier golf destinations.


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