Thanks to a last minute cancellation by another exhibitor, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation has been able to take space in the tented village at The Open Championship this week.
With the recent opening of the £150 million five-star integrated golf, leisure and real estate development at Aphrodite Hills there is now a choice of three golf courses close to Paphos and they offer a real variety of golfing challenges.
Cyprus is already a popular destination for British travellers. Of the 2.8 million tourists visiting the island annually, it is estimated that 50 per cent are from the UK. The island is also home (or second home) to more than 60,000 Britons. It is an English-speaking country with friendly people, a favourable year-round climate and a high standard of living.
Further golf developments are planned for Cyprus, not only in the Paphos district but also near Limassol and in the south east of the island near Larnaca. Tourism is hugely important to the island’s economy and golf is seen as a way of extending the holiday season, just as it has for other destinations around the Mediterranean.
Amongst those assisting on the stand at Royal St George’s are Jannis Ioannou of the Constantinou Bros Hotels group and Pauline Klimentos from Aphrodite Hills.
The Constantinou group has three hotels in Paphos, conveniently located for all three golf courses: Tsada, Secret Valley and Aphrodite Hills. The Athena Beach and Pioneer Beach are both 4 star hotels while the Paphian Bay hotel is 3 star. Both the Pioneer Beach and Paphian Bay hotels were fully renovated in 2002.
At Aphrodite Hills the championship standard 18-hole golf course was planned by the internationally-known golf course designer Cabell Robinson. The natural beauty of the 578 acre (234 hectare) estate is being carefully preserved. Occupying two elevated plateaux either side of the Randidi Gorge, a natural ravine and public nature reserve, the site is surrounded by the Randi Forest, which is protected by the Cyprus Government’s Department of Forestry. Environmental management at Aphrodite Hills is described by the owners and managers, Limassol-based Lanitis Development Ltd., as “an intrinsic necessity for endowing the project with a truly sustainable character.”
Only a small proportion of the estate will be built upon. Three show villas and the golf course with clubhouse and pro-shop opened last year and the first properties are now occupied. The health spa, tennis academy and village centre are all on track to be completed by the end of 2003 while the 290-bedroom five-star InterContinental Resort hotel is expected to open in the summer of 2004.
The Cyprus Tourism Organisation has an office at 17 Hanover Street, London W1S 1YP Tel: 020 7569 8800
Cyprus Tourism Organisation www.visitcyprus.org.cy
Aphrodite Hills www.aphroditehills.com
Constantinou Bros Hotels www.athena-cbh.com
Secret Valley & Tsada Golf Clubs www.cyprusgolf.com