Part of the technical team responsible for the design of the Ryder Cup fields in Rome and Paris has already visited the facilities of the Camiral Golf complex in Caldes de Malavella (Selva) to study whether it is possible to adapt the two fields in the technical demands of this tournament, a reference and appointment of the best golfers in the world. After the refusal of the Generalitat to build the third field requested by the organizers, the people responsible for the facilities have favored this visit to explore all the possibilities and not lose the option of becoming the venue of the Ryder Cup of 2031.
The candidacy of the Girona facilities has the support of the Catalan and Spanish golf federations, the central government, administrations such as the Diputació de Girona and several town councils, including that of Barcelona, as well as business and social organisations, with Employment Promotion at the head. However, after the meeting held in July and in which all the parties involved participated - including the representatives of the Ryder Cup - the Generalitat was in favor of holding the test, but against the construction of 'a third golf course. The president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, framed this refusal in the context of drought and environmental crisis. Government sources reported that the project involved an expansion of the facilities by 150 hectares, which they were not prepared to authorize.
The Generalitat's refusal left the candidacy up in the air. But the supporters of holding one of the most important sporting events in Caldes de Malavella, with an economic impact that according to them is 1.3 billion euros, are not ready to throw in the towel. "We will do everything we can to adapt the project and not lose an opportunity as important as this," assures David Plana, general manager of Camiral Golf.
The technical requirements to host an event of this magnitude are not few. Each edition of the Ryder Cup mobilizes around 100,000 people. The tournament has more than 2,000 accredited journalists and is broadcast live in numerous countries. The infrastructure involved in its celebration is that of a major event. "Just on the first hole it is necessary to install bleachers with a capacity for between 10,000 and 12,000 people, so we have to see if with the current facilities we are able to host the Ryder Cup", adds Plana, who emphasizes that the support of all the administrations and also of the golf federations "forces us to explore all the possibilities, because it is a unique opportunity for Girona and also for Catalonia".
The rethinking of the golf courses – currently the facilities have two 18-hole courses – and the candidature project involves, among other actions, the expansion of the two hotels that are already in the complex. "But we will not propose any new building, everything that will be done will be ephemeral installations designed for the tournament", assures Plana. The Spanish Federation has pledged not to propose any alternative location until the Ryder Cup officially rules out Girona. However, there are other facilities in Great Britain interested in hosting this competition in 2031.
The main architect of European Golf Design was one of the members of the technical team that traveled to Caldes de Malavella to study on-site alternatives to the third course - the original idea was to build a new one with 18 holes - and spaces for the services that an event of this magnitude requires: from the stands to the areas reserved for the public and teams or the space for broadcasts and the press. However, the organizers of the Ryder Cup are focused on the imminent edition of Rome, which will begin on the 25th, therefore, until the beginning of October, they are not expected to pronounce on the candidacy of Camiral Golf.