Europe’s leading golf destination, the Algarve, enjoyed a feast of superb golf from the world’s finest impaired golfers last week, when the season-ending European Disabled Golf Association Algarve Open took place at stunning Pestana Vila Sol.
The event was launched to coincide with the Algarve Tourism Association’s (ATA) new ‘golf4all’ initiative – which seeks to showcase the Algarve as a fully-inclusive tourism attraction for golfers of all ages and abilities and for tourists from across the globe.
The event was won by Frenchman Charles-Henri Quélin, who has +2 handicap and plays with a fused right arm, after he shot incredible rounds of 79 and 75 (gross) to win by two shots from Lescut.
Tony Bennett, president of the EDGA said: “The EDGA Algarve Open may have closed the 2014 season for the participants of the annual EDGA ranking, but it has opened a new chapter for both the Algarve and the players who regularly compete on the EDGA tour.
“The officials and players have been full of praise for the event, and the players were delighted to test themselves against such a good golf course and were also very impressed by the courteous service that they received at every stage of their visit.
“From the reception that the players received on arrival at the airport, the service of both hotel and golf course staff and the attention to detail from the Associação Turismo do Algarve, each interaction was a great reminder that the Algarve really does deserve its award as 2014 Best European Golf Destination.
“The Associação Turismo do Algarve made this the opening event of their golf4all initiative and we are so pleased to know that we will be back in 2015 on two occasions to play EDGA tournaments in the Algarve.”
A spokesperson for ATA added: “We are absolutely delighted with the success of the EDGA Algarve Open, and we cannot wait to welcome the competitors back for next year’s event, in April and November.
“With our ‘golf4all’ campaign, we are committed to highlighting just why the Algarve is one of Europe’s most popular, welcome and inclusive golf destinations.
“The golf course was superb, the players all had a fantastic time and of course, the standard of golf was exceptionally high. You cannot help but being hugely inspired by the quality of the golf the men and women of the EDGA Tour play.”
The ‘golf4all’ is also being publicised through ATA’s new social media channels, which have already attracted nearly 3,000 fans.
A range of exciting ‘golf4all’ initiatives are planned throughout 2015 to further embellish the campaign, which aims to highlight why the Algarve It will target every unique type of golfer: from disabled golfers, to juniors, seniors and golfers from ‘minority’ backgrounds – both male and female. The campaign will also aim to reach golfers of all ability levels, from beginners, to casual players and experienced golfers.
European Disabled Golf Association (EDGA) www.edgagolf.com
Algarve Tourism Association (ATA) www.visitgolfalgarve.com