Chiang Mai to host two-month golf festival

The northern Thai province of Chiang Mai will host a two-month golf festival designed to broaden the region’s appeal among high-end Asian tourists. To be held 1 May to 30 June 2011, the festival is being organised by the Chiang Mai Provincial Office of Tourism and Sports, Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Chiang Mai Tourism Business Association and Golf Course Association.

The grand opening ceremony will held on 1 May at the Alpine Golf Club & Resort. Throughout the two-month event, golfers will be able to take advantage of a range of special offers and events, including fixed green fees of just THB800 (US$27) at all major golf courses in Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, and Lamphun provinces.

ML Pannada Disakul, Governor of Chiang Mai, said the strategy is aimed at positioning the province as a new golf destination.

“Our key target markets are the short-haul East Asian and Asian markets which are within close travelling distance from Thailand. By promoting creative activities for families planning a holiday in Thailand, we will combine all tourism products to include leisure, educational and wellness tourism. Chiang Mai is proud to have all these products. They only need to be creatively packaged and offered to the right target market.

“Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong and Taiwan are all markets with high purchasing power and strong family travel potential. This group is estimated to generate income of at least THB12,000-15,000 per day,” the Governor said.

Chalermchai Suranand, Director of TAT Chiang Mai office, said; “This year, the Chiang Mai Golf Festival is being held for the third consecutive year. Due to the good response we have received in the past, the TAT has set a clear marketing strategy for Chiang Mai by targetting the niche market travel, especially golfing holidays.

“Although more than 70% of the golfers at courses in Chiang Mai and the Northern provinces are Thais, there is good potential to boost the number of foreign golfers if we continue to maintain high standards, provide good services and have well-targetted sales and marketing strategies and activities.”

He added that the TAT will push for the Chiang Mai Golf Festival to be held annually. Participating courses are the Alpine Golf Resort, Chiang Mai Inthanon Golf and Natural Resort, Gold Canyon Country Club, Chiang Mai Highlands Golf and Spa Resort, Chiang Mai Lanna, Santiburi Country Club Chiang Rai, Gassan Khuntan Golf Club and Resort, Royal Chiang Mai Golf Resort, Star Dome Golf Club, Waterford Valley Chiang Rai, Mae Jo Golf Club and Resort, Summit Green Valley Chiang Mai, Chiang Mai Gymkhana Club, and the Gassan Marina Golf Club.

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