4th Asia Golf Tourism Convention puts Jakarta firmly on the global golfing map
Story published at 14:41, Friday, May 8th, 2015
Golf tourism to Jakarta and Indonesia in general is set for a huge boost following the conclusion of the 4th annual IAGTO Asia Golf Tourism Convention (AGTC).
Staged in Indonesia’s capital, Jakarta, the convention was attended by 510 delegates including more than 180 golf tour operators in 35 countries around the world as well as 266 supplier delegates from 156 golf resorts, golf clubs, hotels, inbound operators and tourist boards from 23 countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
Besides two days of meetings at the Jakarta Convention Centre and a lavish gala dinner for the presentation of the 2015 IAGTO Excellence Awards at Jakarta’s Hotel Mulia, delegates got to experience several golf courses in and around Jakarta, both in the city and the nearby Bogor Highlands. Sixty tour operators then travelled on to Bali for three days after AGTC to experience all four of the island’s golf courses.
Following the event, Jakarta has been given a huge thumbs-up as a golf destination. Several tour operators are already bringing groups of golfers out to Jakarta and Bali in the next few months and others say they believe Indonesia has huge appeal as a golf destination for their golfing clients.
Organised by global golf tourism industry organisation IAGTO (International Association of Golf Tour Operators) AGTC 2015 was hosted by the Jakarta Tourism and Culture Office. IAGTO CEO Peter Walton was delighted with the success of the event.
“Having been coming to Jakarta for three years now to help develop and implement their international golf tourism strategy, I had no doubt that Jakarta would stage a fantastic event that was both professional and idiosyncratically Indonesian. What gave me the most pleasure was the reaction of golf tour operators to the golf courses that we took them to before and after the convention. Those who were first time Jakarta visitors had exactly the same reaction as I did three years ago – they were blown away by the service and quality at the golf courses and therefore by the overall golf experience,” he said.
“As a direct result of this 4th AGTC I expect an immediate upturn in the number of golf tour operators featuring Jakarta and other Indonesian golf destinations in their golf holiday promotions. I was also delighted that the AGTC has become a catalyst for local golf courses, golf resorts and hotels to join our newly launched IAGTO Indonesia Chapter and attend the AGTC in order to meet with IAGTO member golf tour operators – some 38 suppliers attended out of 57 Indonesian members of which 21 were from Jakarta and 17 from Bali, Yogyakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Batam and Bintan Island.
“The entire event was flawless and we look forward now to the sustainable growth of golf tourism to Jakarta as a direct result of bringing more than 200 operators and media to Jakarta. Jakarta is not only undiscovered as a golf destination, it is also has the capacity to double its golf visitor arrivals.”
Walton added: “The natural hospitality of everyone involved in the golf tourism industry here undoubtedly makes Enjoy Jakarta Golf [Jakarta’s golf brand] one of the most outstanding City Golf experiences in Asia.”
Basuki Purnama, Governor of Jakarta, said that the city had been working hard with preparations to showcase Jakarta as a golf destination to the world.
“Our objective is to double golf tourism to Jakarta over the coming years, and we cannot achieve this without the support and business of IAGTO golf tour operators,” he continued.
The Governor thanked the tour operators who had attended from 35 countries, saying that it was a “quite remarkable achievement” for so many to attend. He also thanked the golf resorts, golf courses, hotels and other golf tourism suppliers who had come from golf destinations throughout the Asia Pacific region to attend AGTC in record numbers this year.
“Our ambition is to position Jakarta as the greatest and most desirable City Golf destination in Asia. Out of a total of more than 30 golf courses, 21 are considered by IAGTO to be ideal for international golf visitors, and most within an hour’s drive. For golf travellers, Jakarta offers two distinct experiences: golf in the city and its suburbs, and golf in the Bogor Highlands. I don’t think you will find a city that offers better value for money for golfers.”
Addressing the 700 guests at the AGTC gala dinner, Esther Reko Astuty, Director General of Tourism Marketing for the Indonesia Ministry of Tourism, said that the ministry’s target was for international tourist arrivals to reach 12 million in 2015 and 20 million by 2019.
“It is indeed an honour that this year’s Asia Golf Tourism Convention has been staged in Indonesia, which hopefully will produce significant results for Indonesia’s tourism target in 2016,” she said, adding: “It is through such collaboration that we can strengthen the relationships among, not only the golf tour operators, but also the countries as a whole, to establish a better mutual understanding, in the field of golf, and in all other aspects.”
The 5th Asia Golf Tourism Convention will take place in Chiang Mai from 24-27 April, 2016.
Enjoy Jakarta Golf www.enjoyjakartagolf.com