NZ chips in as top golfing destination
27 Nov 2008
New Zealand has chipped in above Australia, China and Thailand to win 'Golf Destination of the Year 2009' for the Asia / Australasia region at the International Golf Travel Market in Spain.
Winning destinations were chosen by votes cast by more than 300 golf tour operators from 45 countries. The operators - members of the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) - were asked to nominate the golf destinations most appreciated in 2008 by their golfing clients.
"It’s a great achievement because this is not just about great golf courses but also how the destination works with operators and their client's satisfaction with the destination," IAGTO Chief Executive Peter Walton said.
The award also rewarded a progression from a relatively unknown golf destination in global terms to one that was appreciated worldwide, he said.
In 2001, New Zealand was voted IAGTO's 'Undiscovered Golf Destination of the Year' by the association's golf travel writers.
Outstanding golf experience
Best of Golf New Zealand's Philippa King, who was in Spain to receive the award, said the tour operators had made "a great choice".
"New Zealand has some fantastic courses and in the past seven years we have been working hard to achieve even higher standards to provide an outstanding golf experience for every visitor to New Zealand.
"Some will come and play all the top courses, others will have only one round or two during their vacation, but we are confident they all go back home richer for the experience, satisfied not only with the golf courses but having enjoyed more of what the country has to offer - fabulous scenery, Māori culture, sport, soft adventure activities and of course friendly people."
New Zealander Phil Leishman was master of ceremonies for the awards which took place on the final night of the International Golf Travel Market at the Estepona Congress Palace in Andalusia, in front of an audience of more than 1,000 industry professionals.
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