The 36-hole resort in the Costa Brava region will host the Empordà Challenge from October 14-17, closely followed by the Costa Brava Challenge the week after from October 19-22. They replace two events that were due to be held in China, the Hainan Open and the Foshan Open.
Empordà has staged numerous European Tour events and the European Tour Qualifying School in the past and the tournaments will be the first time that the resort has hosted a major professional competition since undergoing a major renovation programme over the last 18 months.
Emilio Cuatrecasas, president of Empordà Golf Club, said: “The decision to host the Empordà Challenge here confirms how exceptional the improvements we have made to our facilities are. Costa Brava is becoming a world-class sporting destination.”
Located 30 minutes from Girona in the heart of the Costa Brava region, Empordà’s facilities include two 18-hole championship courses – Links and Forest – both of which were designed world-renowned architect Robert von Hagge.
As part of the extensive renovation, both courses have undergone significant investment to elevate the golf experience being offered to members and guests, with work being undertaken including the reconstruction of all bunkers using the Better Billy Bunker method, a comprehensive tree clearance programme and purchase of new greenkeeping equipment to improve the all-round condition of tees, fairways and greens.
Away from the fairways, Hotel Empordà Golf has been transformed with a modern and contemporary new look with the bedrooms, communal areas and restaurant all being redesigned and renovated. A new restaurant concept has also been created throughout Empordà’s dining areas, while an outdoor swimming has also been installed.
Golfers can also enjoy an improved experience in the redesigned clubhouse, with the building’s pro shop, golf reception and newly rebranded restaurant Terraverda all being given a contemporary new look. Brand new restaurant, Terrafonda, offers guests at Empordà a flexi-vegan gastronomy option for dining, to promote a healthier and environmentally friendly diet.
Jamie Hodges, executive director of the Challenge Tour, said: “We are very grateful to Empordà Golf for giving us the opportunity to complete the planned schedule on a great course. We are sure that it is going to be a great end to a season in which we are seeing golf of the highest level.”
Javier Gervás, managing director of JGolf, said: “We knew that Empordà Golf was interested in going one step further in terms of the professional tournaments it has hosted and that is why we proposed to host the last two Challenge Tour tournaments there before the final. They have made a great investment that I am sure will pay off and the international coverage generated will help to put Empordà Golf in the global golfing spotlight.”
The tournaments will be the last two events held on the 2021 European Challenge Tour regular season before the final takes place in Mallorca, the last of a run of four tournaments in Spain.