With extensive experience in golf course management, Tatiana Morató has held the commercial and operational reins at Zagaleta New Course since 2020, one of two 18-hole courses at this iconic, prestigious and exclusive luxury development in the Costa del Sol municipality of Benahavís, bordering Marbella.
A keen golfer since she was a child, Tatiana began playing at eight years of age, with the encouragement of her parents, at Royal El Candado Golf Club. “I immediately fell in love with the sport and soon played my first tournament of many,” she recalls. At 12, she moved to the Royal Guadalhorce Golf Club, where she improved her game considerably, managing to win national and international competitions and achieving a positive handicap, which led her to obtaining a one-year golf scholarship at the David Leadbetter Academy in Florida. On her return to Spain, she studied tourism at the University of Málaga and gained a master's degree in golf course administration and management at EADE (Málaga). After finishing her studies, she began her professional career, first at Mar Menor Golf Resort (Murcia) and later at Santa Ponsa Golf (Mallorca). She later returned to the mainland and was in charge of commercial management at Añoreta Golf (Málaga). In September 2020 she joined her current club in La Zagaleta.
As a low-handicap player, how would you describe Zagaleta New Course?
The course was designed by Gaunt & Marnoch in 2005, taking care of every detail to create an exceptional setting that blends nature with an 18-hole course that has stunning hazards and dog-legs. It is impressive to see the way in which they managed to fit the holes between the valleys. It is a short but very strategic course, and it is essential to have a good day off the tees to achieve an acceptable result. Its greens are wide, undulating and fast. It's a delight to watch the ball roll!
At first glance it is clear that the level of course maintenance is outstanding. Could this be one of the course's greatest signs of identity, and one of you and your team’s major commitments?
Without a doubt. Magnificent maintenance of the course and facilities, together with excellent service by our staff and a dreamlike environment, is what makes Zagaleta New Course such an exceptional place. Our maintenance team, shared between the Old and the New Course, does a meticulous job and takes care of every detail to the millimetre. We also should mention the existing fauna within the farm plot’s 900 hectares, where fallow deer, deer and mouflons can be seen during just about every round.
With its two golf courses, the Old and the New, La Zagaleta has always been a private club, exclusive to members and guests, but the New Course has been open to visitors for just over a year. Is there a limit to playing there? What are the available hours?
In April 2021, the owners and the club decided to open the doors of Zagaleta New Course to external clients for three hours a day (from 9 am to 10 am and 12 noon to 2 pm) 200 days a year. In this way, it was possible to open a small window of La Zagaleta so that those interested in becoming familiar with us could finally access and enjoy this wonderful environment, while still preserving the exclusivity and low density that characterises us. The owners took advantage of the initiative to fine-tune the clubhouse set-up and adapt it to the new visitors.
La Zagaleta is a highly exclusive and prestigious brand. What can your course offer that distinguishes it from others?
La Zagaleta’s DNA could be summed up as security, privacy, exclusivity, low density and lifestyle which, together with discretion and majestic surroundings, make it an exceptional setting in this area. There is a very special atmosphere here. For this reason, La Zagaleta has become a favoured holiday destination for leading national and international executives from the world's top companies.
What is the profile of the player you hope to welcome, or what type of profile would you like?
Actually, we want to welcome clients who are interested in enjoying the special experience of being in La Zagaleta. We like to recommend that players come with enough time to sit on the terrace of our Arbonauta Restaurant and contemplate the landscape, practise before going out to play, and enjoy each hole of the course. Our tee times are every 15 minutes, with the sole objective that our clients can play in peace and sense the tranquillity that prevails here.
The experience of playing at La Zagaleta New Course is even more complete if, before or after playing, you have lunch or dinner at your clubhouse restaurant, Arbonauta. What kind of gastronomy will golfers find here? What would you highlight about the restaurant?
At our Arbonauta Restaurant by Delicias Gourmet Group, clients will be able to savour a first-class gastronomic experience and discover a variety of healthy dishes at any time of the day. Its "travelling cuisine" philosophy invites you to explore new flavours at the hands of an expert chef who already has the best ingredients available: spectacular surroundings and exclusivity. To savour this experience, suitable for both golfers and visitors, it is necessary to have a prior reservation.