Where is it?
12 miles southwest of Rio.
The grande dame of Rio golf, opened in 1926 by Scottish and English expats, and redesigned by Robert Trent Jones, Sr., and Stanley Thompson in the 1930s, retains the exclusivity that repelled Vargas. That’s no reason not to play it – its location at the foot of the huge Pedra da Gavea mountain is spectacular, and it has the yesteryear charm of a course where strategy and skill are more important than pure power. When city expansion demanded a new highway, Gavea demanded a tunnel to access the four holes nearest to Sao Conrado beach; not that you’d know it, because a high wall keeps beachcombers out.