A Hole in One: Selling Golf in the Caribbean
“Summer afternoon, summer afternoon, “observed esteemed writer Henry James, “to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” All about lazy summer afternoons, the Caribbean is also a mecca for golfers who flock to the many green courses for a sunny afternoon of play. Even if you can’t tell a 9-iron from a waffle iron or a birdie from a bogey, teeing up with a calm breeze at your back and sinking a putt from twenty-five feet is what golfing bragging rights are all about.
Leaders of the Tee World
In St. Kitts, tourism minister Richard (Ricky) Skerritt knows a good course when he plays one. A member of the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club, the Senator is also an avid golfer. “I like competitive activities so my ideal vacation has to have a golf course, the sea and plenty of sunshine. “ In addition to the Royal St. Kitts managed by the Marriott and the Four Seasons Golf Club across the channel in Nevis, plans are underway for a course at Kittitian Hill and at Christophe Harbour. “Golf tourism is a key niche market that St. Kitts has targeted for growth,” added Richard (Ricky) Skerritt, minister tourism. Referring to the 54-hole St. Kitts-Nevis Admiral’s Cup Pro-Am Tournament slated for Feb 2-6, 2014, he added “this hallmark tournament continues to help us attract visitors from the golfing community as we ramp up marketing efforts internationally to support all the courses.” With holes facing the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, The Royal St. Kitts was the first Caribbean golf course to earn Audubon Certification for its environmental practices and is a coveted haven for native and migratory birds. www.royalstkittsgolfclub.com, www.stkittsmarriott.com, www.fourseasons.com.
At the Ritz-Carlton in Montego Bay, ‘Golf All-Inclusive & 54 Holes In Rose Hall ‘- for travel through December 31 – tempts with unlimited play on The White Witch course, one round at Cinnamon Hill where the Bond movie “Live and Let Die’ was filmed, cart, caddy and club storage . www.ritzcarlton.com. http://cinnamonhilljamaica.com.
No Holes Barred
Inviting with a trio of meticulous courses and GPS-equipped golf carts, Sandy Lane in Barbados is golfing nirvana. With five lakes and a Tom Fazio design, The Country Club is a 72 par, 7,060-yard course with postcard-perfect views of the Caribbean Sea. Also Fazio-designed, The Green Monkey is an ultra-exclusive 72 par; 7,343-yard course carved from an old limestone quarry and the Old Nine meanders through the Sandy Lane estate with 3,345 yards, par 36 and snug fairways. www.sandylane.com.
In Jamaica near the town of Mandeville, the Manchester Club is the oldest course in the Caribbean. Founded in 1865, the course is still in operation with sand traps and bunkers at 2, 0000 feet above sea level. http://visitjamaica.com.
Golf 101 –The Bucket List
- Birdie: A score of 1 under par.
- Bogey: A score of 2 over par.
- Eagle: A score of 2 under par.
- Par: The number of strokes it should take to get the ball into a particular hole.
- The Rough: The longer grass on each side of manicured fairways.