The traditional press conference to present the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters was held today at Royal Valderrama Club. The official presentation was presided over by Valderrama general manager Javier Reviriego, the deputy minister for tourism with the Junta de Andalucía (regional government), Manuel Alejandro Cardenete, a representative of San Roque Town Hall and Pablo Mansilla, president of the Royal Andalucian Golf Federation.
Confirming the previously announced news that Jon Rahm would be teeing up in the tournament, Javier Reviriego thanked the world number one for his support. He also referred to measures adopted by the club as part of its ongoing commitment to sustainability, replacing some lateral grass areas with pine bark, commonly known as “munch”, and noted that the plan was to maintain the course’s high level of difficulty for this year’s tournament. Reviriego once again emphasised, without going into details, that Valderrama’s objective was to ensure that the tournament continued to grow in the future, indicating that he “hopes to have news soon” and adding that , if rumours of a joint circuit between the European Tour and U.S. PGA Tour materialised, he envisaged Valderrama being one of the venues.
Meanwhile, deputy minister for tourism Manuel Alejandro Cardenete highlighted data on tourism’s solid recovery in recent months, surpassing Cataluña for the first time as the premier national destination, and forecast a total of five million visitors during the autumn period.
Jon Rahm Returns to Valderrama
World number one and reigning U.S. Open champion Jon Rahm confirmed back in August that he would return to Royal Valderrama Club this year.
In his last appearance at Valderrama in 2019, Rahm finished runner-up to Christiaan Bezuidenhout in that year’s edition of the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters.
“I have some unfinished business at Valderrama, that’s for sure,” said Rahm. “As a Spaniard, it’s a golf course where we all want to win. As soon as you arrive you get a real sense of the history of the venue and the great moments that have taken place there over the last 30 years. To be a part of that would really be an honour.
“I’ve had nothing but great experiences of playing in front of home crowds. Spanish golf fans are truly special, and I can’t wait to see them lining the fairways again.”
Yesterday we attended the formal presentation of the Solheim Cup, which will be held for the first time in Spain from 18 to 24 September 2023. The venue, Finca Cortesín, had been revealed previously, and yesterday the dates were also confirmed officially – one week before the 2023 Ryder Cup in Rome.
This is excellent news for Spanish golf, which once again has the opportunity of hosting an event at the highest international level. The coup follows three years of hard work and effort by the main person behind the initiative, Íñigo Aramburu, managing director of Deporte & Business, a company which has been organising Ladies European Tour events since 2002.
Costa del Sol Tourism joins PING and Rolex as the main sponsors, while Andalucía Tourism, Acosol, Marbella Town Hall and Benahavís Town Hall are the official partners. A key union of forces without which it would not have been possible to host the event…
The initial project proposed hosting the event in Marbella, but in the end it was decided to opt for the Casares course – once again highlighting Finca Cortesín’s great vision in always aiming to maintain its status as a top-level competition course.
This is the second part of our report outlining the conclusions of a survey we held among international golfing clients in early-September. The survey was conducted by personal email invitation to verified clients, and attracted 1,000 replies from clients in 28 countries (74% of them European). We explained some of the technical aspects in the first part and in the complete survey report.
In that initial report we analysed data in reference to cancellations, while here in the second part we compare the conclusions that can be drawn when it comes to respondents’ perception of Spain’s diverse destinations, as well as the key measures they take into account when assessing our bookings.
This is one of the initial conclusions drawn from a survey we held among international golfing clients, with the aim of learning how bookings had been affected this year – as well as determining medium-term travel plans and the current perception of Spain’s main destinations.
The survey was conducted by personal email invitation to verified clients, and the preliminary results are based on 1,000 replies from clients in 28 countries (74% of them European) from 20 August.
It should be borne in mind that autumn and spring are the golfing high seasons in Spain and – although there are no official figures for golf’s impact on the economy and tourism sector – it is estimated that the market generates €2,400 million in directly related business revenue and 2.6 million tourists a year. Spain is the premier golf destination in Europe, with an estimated market share of 35%. A total of 28% of those surveyed indicated that they make more than three getaways a year to Spain or Portugal to play golf.
Which golf courses are open?
We are trying to keep you updated about the golf courses with which we collaborate that have already confirmed opening dates. Remember that right now it is mandatory to pre-book your green fee. You can do it by clicking on each link or calling us from 09:30 to 15:00. Keep in mind that these indications and dates are informative and will be subject to changes based on the government regulations.
- La Sella Golf: May 11
- Las Colinas Golf & Country Club: May 11
- Bonalba Golf: May 11
- Vistabella Golf: May 11
- Lo Romero Golf: May 11
- Puig Campana Golf: May 11
- Campoamor: May 11
- La Marquesa: May 11
- Campo de Golf Villamartín: Open
- Font del Llop Golf Resort: May 18
- Altea Club de Golf: May 11
- El Plantío Golf: open
- Alenda Golf: May 22
#COVID-19 has changed everyone’s life, and for us it has been a hard few weeks trying to look after our clients. First of all, those who were already travelling, and then those who needed to cancel their trips. And all this while we moved our operations to enable the whole team to work remotely. Nearly all the pending cancellations have already been processed, and we will be continuing to closely monitor the situation over the next few weeks.
The tourism sector, and by extension the commercial golf sector, is likely to be the most affected in Spain by this crisis, mainly because a lack of confidence will last longer than the effects of the virus. The decrease in sales has been absolute, so we have adopted a series of key measures, including temporarily reducing our business hours. They are now from 10am to 3pm from Monday to Friday, although we will be making adjustments every week, depending on demand and how the situation evolves.
This is unquestionably the most serious crisis experienced in the golf tourism sector in the 25 years since we launched GolfinSpain, an anniversary we were just about to start celebrating. Nevertheless, we have already decided to consider this period of “global shutdown” to be an opportunity and take advantage of the time to continue incorporating improvements to our website and the products we market.
We would like to send our thoughts and affection to those golf clubs and hotels that are suffering severely from this situation, and we also want to reassure all our clients and suppliers of our financial solvency and liability insurance as a travel agency, together with a restructuring plan that we have already applied. These ensure that we can approach this sales stoppage without suffering any financial risks and still be able to offer the best guarantees. Together, we will come out of this stronger.
New Spanish sensation Jon Rahm will be making his first professional appearance in Spain at the third edition of the Andalucía Valderrama Masters, Hosted by the Sergio García Foundation. Continue reading