MARCH WAS the best month ever in terms of the number of rounds of golf played in the Algarve, according to Região de Turismo do Algarve (RTA), the Algarve Tourism Board.
A total of 126,597 rounds were played in March, representing an increase of 10,516 rounds (8.3 per cent) against figures recorded over the same period last year.
It is the best performance ever by the region’s golf courses and, according to the RTA, the record is only likely to be equalled in October, the other high point in the golfing season.
The overall performance for the first trimester was higher than last year. A total of 285,494 rounds were recorded over the first three months of 2006, 15,028 more than the previous year, representing a 5.3 per cent increase. This trend is confirmation of the destination’s good performance registered in 2005, when the number of rounds for the whole year surpassed the million mark for the first time ever.
The total investment announced by the Agência Regional de Turismo do Algarve (ARPT) to be spent on the Algarve’s golf product in 2006 is 962,650 euros, corresponding to an increase of 17 per cent against last year’s budget. The budget this year allows for exhibition stands being taken at fairs, road shows, the staging of workshops and educational visits dedicated to golf.
The recent Best Golf Destination in the World accolade bestowed upon the region by the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) has served to strengthen the Algarve’s reputation as a quality golf destination. As well as this award, two Algarvean courses were recognised by Golf Digest magazine in their world top 100 list – San Lorenzo (38) and Vilamoura Old Course (84)