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Fiji Teeing Up Golf Holidays

One of the main goals of the Fiji International presented by Fiji Airways golf tourna­ment is to promote the island para­dise to the world and it continues to deliver with the 2018 event set to attract even more international visitors thanks to a recent famil­iarisation tour.

Several travel operators and me­dia visited the island in June and the promotion is already paying dividends with one Australian golf travel specialist confirming a ‘dou­ble digit’ group making the jour­ney to Fiji for the 2018 tournament.

Mark Sawyer, owner of Sydney based Golf Tours Abroad, was among those invited to sample what Fiji has to offer and came away more than a little impressed.

“Unexpected,” he said of what he found on his first trip to Fiji, “and extremely pleasantly surprised.

“I think most of us, when we think of Fiji, we think of those incredible white beaches and that amazing blue water.

“And there is plenty of that, and it is stunning. But there is so much more to the country beyond just the beaches and it was fascinating to discover some of that.”

SPECIAL APPEAL

He said as a company with a focus on golf travel he had immediately seen a special appeal to Fiji.

“The two courses at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course and Denarau Golf and Raquet Club are both fantastic and well worth planning an entire trip around,” he says.

“But there ne to be more than just golf, even on a golf holiday, and this is where Fiji really delivers.

“There is such a diverse and fas­cinating culture and such a broad range of activities and things to see and do that in my mind it is really an untapped market for us here in Australia.”

He said he had already confirmed a significant group to attend this year’s tournament but plans more trips outside tournament time.

“The chance to get up close to the tournament action and see some great players is a big appeal for golfers, obviously,” he said.

“Ernie Els is playing this year and I can’t imagine you will be able to get a better front row seat to watch him at any other tournament in the world.

“But even outside tournament time I can see a lot of golfers want­ing to visit Fiji to experience the laidback atmosphere, the stunning views from the golf courses and the challenge of the courses them­selves.”

PROMOTING FIJI

PGA of Australia CEO Gavin Kirkman said promoting Fiji as a destination was one of his organi­sation’s major goals when launch­ing the Fiji International in 2014 and he was pleased to see that com­ing to fruition.

“The Fiji International present­ed by Fiji Airways is about much more than just a golf tourna­ment,” he said. “What we are see­ing with international tour opera­tors getting involved and bringing groups to the event is just the tip of the iceberg, really.

“The tournament is like a shop window for Fiji. It helps bring people in and then those people go away and sing the praises of what this fabulous destination has to of­fer.

“There is no more powerful ad­vertising than word of mouth and we are proud to be playing our part in delivering that message to the world.”

To be held from 2-5 August 2018, the Fiji International presented by Fiji Airways will be played at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course which boasts breathtak­ing views of the Coral Coast and is home to the Natadola Beach Land Estate.

Enticed by the tropical destina­tion, the Fiji International present­ed by Fiji Airways has attracted some of the world’s best golfers since its inaugural staging in 2014, including Fijian hero and three-time Major champion Vijay Singh, 2017 champion Jason Norris, 2016 champion Brandt Snedeker, 2015 champion Matt Kuchar and 2014 champion Steven Jeffress, Steven Bowditch, Boo Weekley and Nick Price.

PACIFIC PARADISE

This year’s tournament is set to feature four-time Major champion and Captain of the International Team for the 2019 Presidents Cup, Ernie Els.

In 2018, the Fiji International pre­sented by Fiji Airways continues to have a global presence confirming its position as an integral tourna­ment in the South Pacific region, with the tournament being tri-sanctioned by the European Tour, ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Aus­tralasia and Asian Tour.

A Pacific paradise, the Fiji In­ternational presented by Fiji Air­ways also boasts some of the most unique hospitality options in world golf with the par-3 8th hole provid­ing the perfect vantage point to watch the golf, whilst socialising on the beach.

More than just a golf tournament, the Fiji International presented by Fiji Airways aims to leave a last­ing legacy for golf in the Pacific region, with the PGA of Australia supporting initiatives to introduce and grow the game in Fiji.

Owned by Sports and Entertain­ment (SEL) and the PGA of Aus­tralia, the Fiji International pre­sented by Fiji Airways is proudly supported by the Fijian Govern­ment, Tourism Fiji and the Inter­Continental Fiji Golf Resort Spa as the official resort of the tourna­ment.

Fiji International

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