Saadiyat Beach Golf Club and Yas Links Abu Dhabi, both of which are owned by Aldar Properties, have eliminated all single-use plastic bottles from its premises as of March 2021, underlining their commitment to environmental sustainability. A combined total of over 100,000 plastic water bottles are consumed by golfers between the two properties on an annual basis. Joining the global movement to reduce the consumption of single-use plastics and conserve the environment, the goal is to reduce this figure by 40 per cent this year.
Built between 2007-2008 by architect David Krause, Golf Valley is a major development, around 35km south of Munich. Created by developer Michael Weichselgartner with the aim of hosting major tournaments and the Ryder Cup, Golf Valley was built in a links-style, with over 3,000 sq m (32,000 sq ft) of bunker sand area and, according to Andy Matzner, the club’s first course manager, who now works there in a consulting capacity, has always struggled with the impact of rain on its bunker faces.
Finca Cortesin Hotel, Golf & Spa, host venue of the 2023 Solheim Cup, has further enhanced its position at the forefront of women’s golf in Spain and Europe by finalising new 12-month sponsorship agreements with Ladies European Tour stars Noemi Jiménez and Laura Gómez. The exclusive resort in Andalusia has extended its long-term partnership with Jiménez, 27, for a sixth year while entering into a new relationship with Gómez, 24, one of the rising talents of the ladies’ game in Spain.
Last year, Rain Bird’s Golf Division introduced its new 702/752 Series Electric and IC (Integrated Control) Rotors, featuring faster, easier adjustments and fewer parts to simplify both maintenance and inventory. Now, Rain Bird Golf is expanding its rotor family with the 552, 702 and 752 block models, which will be available in the UK and Europe from June 2021 onwards and are available in other parts of the world now.
The 25-year-old assistant club manager at Berkhamsted Golf Club, Ben Hunter, is the first individual to enter the new personal mentorship programme offered by Legacy Golf. Hunter’s mentor will be Stuart Gillett, who was previously general manager of Golf at Goodwood, and who has recently co-founded Legacy Golf Advisors, bringing together an experienced team of people to offer a multi-subject strategic advisory service to the golf industry. The mentorship will initially take place on a remote basis, but will also involve quarterly face-to-face sessions when COVID-19 restrictions are lifted to enable this.
The British & International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA) has revealed the 20 ambitious greenkeepers who will participate in the Future Turf Managers Initiative (FTMI) 2021. Each year Jacobsen, which celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2021, opens the doors of its headquarters in Ipswich to 20 BIGGA members who have earned a place on the groundbreaking course by demonstrating their commitment to the profession and eagerness to learn.
BRS Golf by GolfNow, saw an explosion of nine-hole rounds booked via its platforms in 2020 and predicts this trend will continue in 2021. Last year, nine-hole bookings in the UK and Ireland hit 3.47 million via BRS Golf’s members’ booking website, members’ app and visitor booking engines — up from 1.55 million in 2019 and 1.4 million in 2018 — and a 123 per cent increase year-on-year from 2019 to 2020.
April 2021 will see the launch of Rocco Forte Private Villas, consisting of the first 20 branded independent villas overlooking the sparkling bay of Verdura Resort, Sicily. The new villas will guarantee ultimate privacy and security for those who seek exclusive accommodation combined with the unique services that have made Verdura Resort famous throughout the Mediterranean.
More than 60 per cent of greenkeepers, PGA professionals and club managers have experienced increased work-related mental health problems in the past year, a new survey by Syngenta has found. Of these, nearly two-thirds (64 per cent) said they had felt anxious or worried; 57 per cent said they experienced sleep problems and 43 per cent said they had felt depressed with a continuous low mood. Three of the 256 respondents admitted thoughts of self-harm or suicide.
ClubNet App, a club management software company owned by Irish technology company Golfgraffix, has appointed experienced club management consultant Jerry Kilby as their business development consultant. Since 2011 Golfgraffix have been supplying numerous areas of the worldwide golf industry with innovative technology solutions for all facets of the game and have worked with over 1,000 golf clubs worldwide. With the acquisition of ClubNet in 2017, Golfgraffix launched the ClubNet App product which is a full software platform for the management of a golf club.
Motocaddy has previewed plans to extend its pioneering GPS range from two to five game-changing models this year, while also becoming the first brand to introduce cellular connectivity on its top-end products. “This year is shaping up to be the biggest in Motocaddy’s history — beating last year, which itself saw record growth despite the challenges brought about by the COVID pandemic,” said CEO, John Helas.
The date is set for golf’s return in England and golfers and golf clubs alike are looking forward to March 29 when play will resume. But what has the true impact of Covid-19 been on club operations and golfer behaviour? The results of a comprehensive survey of golf clubs in the UK and Ireland by technology provider BRS Golf by GolfNow highlights the effects of Covid-19 on revenue, membership and attitudes to technology among golf club managers.