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Update 5 October: The IGTM is underway today, with Tenerife transformed into the international capital of the golf industry. Tenerife president Carlos Alonso indicated that hosting the event has been a logistical challenge that is hugely important for the island given the enormous international repercussions of a fair of this size. Alonso said that Tenerife would continue not only to increase the number of summer golf tourists but also to capture new markets.

Canarian Government Tourism, Culture and Sports minister María Teresa Lorenzo emphasized the excellent natural conditions of the Canaries for golf, and confirmed the regional Government’s commitment to its development as part of their strategy of diversification of tourism promotion. Cabildo Tourism councillor Alberto Bernabé said that the fair always resulted in increased sales and that hosting it this year was literally a golden opportunity for Tenerife to generate future business.

Fair director Peter Grimster said that he had been impressed with Tenerife’s bid to host the fair, and the way the public and private sectors worked together. He said that the fair has an medium and long term impact, and that some 60% of the tour operators who attend don’t only sell golf products. One of the main characteristics, none the less, of this sector of the market is their high spending power: with currently just 1.9% market share they already bring Tenerife 2.4% of tourist spend, at some €92.7m a year.

The fair, bringing together tour operators, golf wholesalers, travel agents, etc from around the world, will be officially inaugurated on Tuesday morning in the presence of national Industry minister José Manuel Soria, Canarian President Fernando Clavijo, and Tenerife president Carlos Alonso. Delegates have already had a few days enjoying a full programme of events taking in the Teide National Park, La Laguna, activities like whale watching, and various golf tournaments. As host, the Canaries’ stand takes pride of place among the 450 stands over the two floors of the Magma auditorium. Let’s hope it has the effect the authorities want, and the result that their successful bid to host this important event deserves.


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Photo: Janet Anscombe

Update 2 October 2015: The world’s premier global event for golf tourism suppliers, buyers and media is about to descend on Tenerife, providing a staggering worldwide platform for the island to showcase its development as one of Europe’s leading golf tourism destinations.

The 2015 edition of IGTM takes place at The Magma Conference Centre in Tenerife from 5-8 October, and will highlight the importance of golf tourism in the region. This is a stunning and major coup for the island, just have a look at the official website HERE, and the promotional video on the front page! More than 450 companies will be exhibiting at IGTM 2015, highlighting the event’s broad appeal as an established meeting place for golf tourism professionals worldwide. In addition, in 2014, 1,450 individuals, representing national and regional golf tourism organisations, leading resorts and golf courses attended the event, and a similar number are expected to visit Tenerife in 2015.

If ever the upmarket trend could be seen in action, this is it, and the Tenerife Cabildo is absolutely thrilled that the IGTM is here this year, complementing the more than 110,000 golf tourists from across the world who came to these islands in 2014, adding in excess of €171 million to the local economy. Since IGTM was last staged in The Canary Islands in 2005, the number of rounds played by golf visitors has also steadily increased, with Gran Canaria recording close to 165,000 rounds per annum, and Tenerife surpassing 300,000, according to 2014 figures.

Tenerife president Carlos Alonso said that “Tenerife is delighted to host IGTM for the first time. The island now boasts nine different 18-hole layouts and two 9-hole pitch and putt courses, which directly correlates to the region’s on-going popularity as a golf tourism destination. Many of Tenerife’s courses are now recognised in numerous rankings and the 2015 edition of IGTM will provide further evidence that the region’s many golf courses and resorts, along with the year-round climate, are collectively creating one of Europe’s leading golf destinations.”

Peter Grimster, IGTM Exhibition Manager, added that “the decision to return to The Canary Islands and host the 2015 IGTM in Tenerife, reflects the crucial role tourism plays in the region, alongside its overall contribution to the wider Spanish economy. For The Canary Islands to continue to experience growth in golf visitor numbers is a notable achievement and underlines how attractive the islands have now become to golf travellers from across Europe and beyond.”

The Canarian Government minister for Tourism, Culture and Sports, María Teresa Lorenzo, said that these islands have “a clear advantage over other golf destinations: their great climate makes it possible to play 365 days a year. This fact, together with our wide hotel offer have made us a perfect spot for golfers, with all the advantages of a destination which is part of the European Union and easily reachable from the main European cities.”

According to the latest figures from Turespaña, golf accounted for more than 986,000 foreign tourists visiting Spain in 2014.  Marta Blanco, General Director of Turespaña, commented: “Turespaña fully supports the celebration of key events within the golfing calendar and is looking forward to welcoming IGTM to Tenerife. As a leading golf destination with many excellently equipped courses and hotels throughout the country, we aim to ensure Spain retains its position as a leading golf destination and for the Canary Islands to continue its upward trajectory regarding visitor numbers that it has seen since the 2005 edition of IGTM.”

I’ll have more about this prestigious event, which will do Tenerife’s golf tourism market so much good, over the next few days.

Original post 31 October 2014:

Tenerife tourism councillor Miguel Ángel Santos making the announcement. Photo: Tenerife Cabildo
Tenerife tourism councillor Miguel Ángel Santos speaking after the announcement at the closing ceremony of IGTM 2014 in Lake Como, Italy. Photo: Tenerife Cabildo

The Cabildo has announced that Tenerife will be the host of 2015’s International Golf Travel Market (IGTM), the world’s most important golf tourism fair. The event will be attended by over a thousand delegates and several hundred specialist journalists.

Tenerife president Carlos Alonso said that “it’s one of the best news we could get. To be the host for the IGTM is sought by major destinations around the world because of the economic and promotional benefits it can bring”. Alonso stressed the hard work that has resulted in the award, and said the Cabildo was sure that Tenerife’s IGTM would be the best IGTM to date.

Canarian government tourism minister Ricardo Fernandez de la Puente echoed the Tenerife president’s words, saying that the event would be hugely important in enabling Tenerife and the Canary Islands generally to promote the advantages of the destination to the very large and year-round niche golf market.

Cabildo tourism councillor Miguel Angel Santos explained that Tenerife’s bid was the most complete of all the presentations to host the next IGTM. “Our magnificent golf courses, exceptionally high standards of accommodation with all facilities for golfers, and the leisure attractions that Tenerife offers have all been crucial to being chosen”, he said.

Peter Grimster, IGTM director, said that apart from Tenerife’s climate, accessibility and facilities, one of the the most significant elements to awarding the fair was the coordination shown by all parties involved in the bid, from the Cabildo and government, to golf courses, hotels, and to the cohesive upmarket branding for Tenerife Golf, which has resulted in Tenerife being “a world-class destination for both golfers and tourists in general.”

The event will be held in Costa Adeje’s Magma Centre next October and will incorporate visits to some of the island’s famous landmarks, including the Teide National Park and La Laguna – both Unesco Heritage Sites – and various activities, from whale watching to gastronomic events. Participants will come from around the world, with notable contingents from Germany, Netherlands, USA, China, Russia, UAE and India.

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