UAE Golf Online spent a little bit of time last week at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai to see if there was any perspective on Golf, After all, Golf is a top factor for driving Sports Tourism to the Emirates and Region.
At the moment we are blessed with great Golf tournaments, investment, and infrastructure within the UAE, especially in Dubai. I have to say that it was a little disappointing to not see a dedicated section for Golf Tourism at the Arabian Travel Market.
However, the main brand that I found there prominently were the ever-present Damac with their Akoya development being showcased with the use of the large 3d actual model. Yes, they are also marketing the real estate aspect with this heavily but at least there was some Golf on the show and you have to hand it to them for the continual project push.
There was some information on the Dubai and Abu Dhabi Tourism stages and credit to the Ras al Khaimah Tourism Board as they had the 2 Golf Courses together (Al Hamra and Tower Links) and both General Managers were there to help the promotion.
Not forgetting that there were the big gun brands there in regards to developments and hotels. Saying this, I did meet with a few representatives from the 2 Emaar courses in Dubai who were there, so they did have Golf people presence at least.
Of course, there were some small Golf related destinations, hotels or developments scattered around, but these were overseas mainly and Hotel based from around the world.
But by far the best piece of Golfing related information on offer was from Etihad and Xgolf Australasia who had joined forces to showcase a fantastic Golf simulator for people to see and play. The simulator was a pretty cool piece of kit and the guys coincided with this showcase by announcing that XGolf was expanding to the Middle East, which is great news. More to come on this.
All in all, it was a little disappointing from the Golf angle, but the event is certainly a superb effort by the organizers. Well laid out, large and with a variety of exhibitors on offer.