The 1991 Masters champion and former world no.1 likes to kick back in Barbados when he’s not competing on the Legends Tour, and is partial to a freshly cooked steak and chips from his favourite restaurant in Madrid. Interview Matt Nicholson 

How old were you when you first picked up a golf club?
I must have been around seven, so 1965. My dad took us down to Llanymynech Golf Club, which is famous for having 15 holes in Wales and three holes in England. On the fourth hole, you tee off in Wales, putt in England and return to Wales three holes later.

My dad, Harold, used to play local club football when he was younger, but when he got to 35, he and his football mates gradually took up golf instead, and then we all got introduced to the game soon after that as a family.

What is your first holiday memory?
My dad always used to take us on holiday to Butlins in Pwllheli in South Wales. Funnily enough, we went there for the boxing.

My dad was a keen amateur boxer and he got us into it as well. It was the early ‘70s and Butlins used to run these boxing competitions for the kids – hard to believe now – and if you won your final bout your family got a free holiday. My dad loved a free holiday, so we kept going back there year after year!

Ian Woosnam playing Apes Hill Barbados

What’s your favourite golf resort?
I stayed at some fantastic golf resorts all over the world, during my career, so I’ve been very lucky, but I guess it’s only as I’ve got older that I’ve really been able to appreciate what they have to offer in terms of a holiday as opposed to how they stack up as tournament venues.

Apes Hill Resort in Barbados, of which I am ambassador, is obviously a very exciting proposition, and is on its way to becoming one of the world’s great resorts, although it’s doing it on a very low-key level, being careful to make sure it is developed in harmony with the local area.

The course is magnificent, with incredible views too, while the facilities around it, from the academy and the restaurants, and the properties that surround the course, are all top class.

Who would be in your ideal holiday fourball?
That’s a tough one, as I’ve always loved playing with the mates I’ve made on tour, but If I could only pick three I‘d go for DJ Russell, Peter Baker and Sandy Lyle. They’d be lots of laughs and a few side bets.

Sandy Lyle would be one of Ian’s partners in a holiday fourball

And what’s been your most memorable round?
I once shot 57 at Oswestry Golf Club in the middle of winter, and that included missing a two-footer and three 10-foot birdie putts on the last three holes. That was something else, but you I’ve shot some incredible rounds in all sorts of different places.

I think I shot a 60 in Monte Carlo – but I’m not really one for dwelling on specific rounds, as I was always more concerned about winning. It’s all about the destination and not the journey when it comes to tournament golf!

What’s your favourite course in the UK?
It used to be the West Course at Wentworth when it was set up the old way, but obviously I’ve not played it so much following its redesign.

I used to loved how it demanded that you could hit every club in the bag, not just half a dozen or so, and you can’t say that about a lot of courses these days.

What’s the best hotel you’ve ever stayed in?
You can’t go too wrong with The Lost City Hotel in Sun City, South Africa. Having all the elephants and giraffes and wildlife on your doorstep was incredible. I’ve got great memories of staying there when I won the Million Dollar Challenge in 1987.

Owestry Golf

What’s your favourite city in the world?
Dublin. It’s as much about the people as it is the place, and everywhere you go in Dublin you’re always made to feel welcome. One of the best times I had there was in 1978 when a few lads went over there for a couple of days for the craic and ended up staying there two weeks!

Obviously I’m Welsh, but part of me feels a bit Irish, especially after winning the Ryder Cup at the K Club in 2004.

What’s been your most memorable meal on holiday?
There have been quite a few, but a steak I had at a restaurant in Madrid called Caso Paco was hard to beat. The beef comes straight out of the bull ring apparently, and they cook it over a charcoal grill and bring it out on a hotplate so it carries on cooking at the table.

Served medium rare with some fresh chips and a bit of salad – lovely! I’m going there again in a few weeks’ time.

Caso Paco Madrid

What’s your top travel tip?
Have a friend with a private plane! Travelling – or rather flying – used to fun when I was first competing on the European Tour. You just jumped on a plane and got where you wanted to go.

These days, flying abroad is such a hassle with all the security, the queues, the delays, losing your luggage. It’s no fun anymore for, but it’s obviously part of the job.

My other top tip is to take Imodium tablets and mosquito repellent. Both can be life savers!