La Manga Club has led the tributes to former owner Gregory Peters, the driving force behind creating Spain's flagship resort, following his death at the age of 86.
Peters opened La Manga Club in 1972, two years after he first began work on the ground-breaking project in Murcia, south-east Spain, and he laid the foundations for the venue to be at the forefront of sports and leisure destinations across Europe.
Under the inspirational leadership of the American entrepreneur, renowned golf course architect Robert Putman recruited to design two 18-hole championship courses - the North and South - and a five-star tennis centre was opened.
With South African star Gary Player as the resort's first director of golf, La Manga Club hosted the Spanish Open from 1973-77, Spanish golfing legend Severiano Ballesteros was the resort's touring pro from 1980-84 while top Spanish player Manolo Santana was the first director of its tennis centre.
A third golf course, the West Course, opened in 1986 and La Manga Club also featured a four-star hotel and many properties when Peters sold the resort in the mid-1980s. In his later years, he returned to America and died at his home in Las Vegas.
Jose Asenjo, general manager at La Manga Club, said: "Gregory Peters was a true visionary and he will never be forgotten at La Manga Club.
"The role he played in establishing the resort as a household name across Europe was essential to the success that La Manga Club continues to enjoy today. He provided the blueprint for modern-day resorts and he will be sadly missed."
Now in its fifth decade, La Manga Club continues to be a top attraction for stars from the worlds of sport and show business.
Set in an area three times the size of Monaco, the resort boasts unrivalled facilities as a sport and leisure venue including three 18-hole championship golf courses, a 28-court tennis centre, eight full-size football pitches and a 2,000sqm spa and fitness centre. It also offers the choice of a five-star hotel, four-star serviced apartments and townhouses, and more than 20 bars and restaurants.
La Manga Club is the official overseas training base of the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) while recent accolades include being voted best golf hotel in Spain by readers of Today's Golfer magazine for the third year running.
For more information about La Manga Club and to book a break, call 00 34 968 17 5577, email email@example.com or visit www.lamangaclub.com.
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La Manga Club - www.lamangaclub.com - is an unrivalled sports and leisure paradise which sits between the low hills that separate the Mediterranean from the Mar Menor Sea, just 20 minutes from Murcia airport and an hour from Alicante.
Set out over an area of some 560 hectares (approx. 1,400 acres), it enjoys a mild year-round Mediterranean climate and offers visitors a prestigious five-star hotel, luxury vacation apartments and extensive sports facilities, including three championship golf courses, a 28-court tennis centre and eight grass sports pitches. The resort is also home to innumerable leisure facilities, such as the 2,000m2 Spa La Manga Club with its 13 luxurious treatment rooms, comprehensive fitness centre and 25m indoor swimming pool; meeting, banqueting and incentive facilities, and more than 20 restaurants and bars.
As well as hosting both Davis and Fed Cup tennis matches, La Manga Club has signed a long-term deal to be the overseas training resort of the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) until 2016. It has also staged the Spanish Open golf championship and regularly attracts professional and international football teams to the first-class year-round training facilities which are also used by rugby and cricket sides.
As a result of more than 40 years of continued investment, innovation and commitment to excellence, La Manga Club is widely recognised as Spain's flagship resort and as one of the finest sports and lifestyle destinations in the world. Evidence of this is provided by its numerous awards and accolades.
La Manga Club was the proud recipient of a 2013 Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor, the world's largest travel website, for the facilities and service on offer at its five-star Hotel Principe Felipe. The resort has long been a staunch supporter of women's golf, being the official overseas resort partner of the English Women's Golf Association for three years as well as hosting the Ladies European Tour (LET) Qualifying School from 2009-12. La Manga Club is also the venue for the Ladies Murcia Open, an LET Access Series event, and regularly hosts top women's amateur events and teams.