The International Pairs, the largest golf tournament in the world for club golfers, has been recognised for its work with VisitScotland by being nominated for two Scottish Thistle Awards.
The Hampshire-based company has been nominated for the Events and Festivals award and the Small Business Marketing Initiative. And to complete the ‘hat-trick’ the tournament’s ‘spiritual home’ – St Andrews Bay Golf Resort & Spa – has been nominated in the Business Tourism section.
The founder of the International Pairs, Ross Honey, said, “Being nominated is a fabulous achievement for us. These are the Oscars of the Scottish tourism industry. Winning one would be a dream come true for those of us who have worked on the event since its inception in 1998.
“When you consider how young we are as a company – and indeed how small compared to our fellow nominees – this is a tremendous honour and, of course, we’re the only company nominated for our work north of the border while not actually being located in Scotland. So I think we’re entitled to feel proud of our nomination.”
The Scottish Thistle Awards are designed to recognise and celebrate excellence in Scottish Tourism and are promoted by VisitScotland, the national tourism authority.
They are open to all types of businesses and are widely recognised as the industry’s ultimate accolade. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in Edinburgh on October 28, hosted by VisitScotland chairman Peter Lederer.
The International Pairs has been working closely with VisitScotland since 2003 when the UK final was first hosted at St Andrews Bay. Since then, the final qualifying rounds of the UK event have been rotated around the country, visiting no less than 24 courses and bringing an estimated £1.3m-worth of tourism revenue into Scotland with press coverage valued at £2.5 million according to a recent VisitScotland report.
In 2003 and 2004 the competition took 1,300 golfers to Scotland with an average of 96 per cent saying they would return to Scotland in the future for a golf break.
Earlier this year, VisitScotland signed an agreement to host the UK final of the competition north of the border until 2010. The relationship has been further cemented with the announcement that the world finals of the International Pairs will be hosted by Scotland in 2007, 2010 and 2013.
International Pairs www.internationalpairs.com