International hotelier Sir Rocco Forte took time out from his busy schedule to give a personal welcome to a collection of the UK and Europe’s top golf travel trade and media who took part in the inaugural Rocco Forte Invitational event at Sicily’s deluxe Verdura Resort this month.
Sir Rocco was on hand at his resort to greet journalists and representatives from some of Europe’s leading golf travel companies from countries including Germany, Switzerland, France, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK for the fun-packed four-day event, held to showcase Verdura’s wide choice of luxury golf and leisure facilities.
As well as being given the chance to play Verdura’s two 18-hole championship golf courses – the East and the West, designed by world-renowned architect Kyle Phillips – guests also had the opportunity to enjoy an array of other relaxing activities that has helped make the resort one of Europe’s premier contemporary luxury golf and lifestyle destinations.
Celebrity chef Fulvio Pierangelini gave a full demonstration of his talents by serving up a sumptuous Sicilian gala dinner on the opening night while guests eager to polish up their culinary skills were treated to a Sicilian cooking class with Resort chef Gianluca Interrante.
In addition, the international group also had the chance to enjoy visits to the nearby Planeta Winery and the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, a UNESCO World Heritage site, while people seeking some relaxation during their stay took advantage of Verdura’s range of five-star leisure facilities including its award-winning 4,000sqm spa complex.
Sir Rocco, who launched Rocco Forte Hotels with his sister Olga Polizzi in 1996, said: “Verdura Resort holds a very special place in my heart and whenever I’m there, I always find it a struggle to leave. I founded Verdura to create an exceptional golf destination with outstanding hotel facilities. I spent years finding the right site and Sicily was a natural choice because of its climate and history.
“It was a great pleasure to welcome so many respected figures from the world of golf to the resort for the first-ever Rocco Forte Invitational, and to give them a real flavour of what Verdura has to offer. I’m sure they will agree with me that it is a special place and I hope that they have taken many happy memories away with them. ”
Set in 230 hectares of stunning landscape, Verdura Resort – host to the European Tour’s 2012 Sicilian Open – offers everything needed for a five-star golf break and features a par-three nine hole course as well as two outstanding 18-hole championship layouts.
Designed by Kyle Phillips, the three links-style layouts have been built to the highest specifications, with tee times arranged at 12-minute intervals to ensure free-flowing play, five sets of tees making the courses playable for golfers of all abilities and one of its courses dedicated daily to two-ball play only.
Complementing the courses are extensive practice facilities including a double-ended driving range and excellent golf academy, while players can also take advantage of the latest state-of-the-art TaylorMade equipment when they hire clubs at the resort after a significant upgrade of its rental service this summer.
Verdura Resort www.roccofortehotels.com
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