Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Tourism Company continues sponsorship of PR Open

The Executive Director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC), Mario González Lafuente, announced the government corporation´s sponsorship of the fifth consecutive edition of the Puerto Rico Open. The event is part of the renowned PGA Tour of the Puerto Rico Golf Association (PRGA).

According to González Lafuente, the 2012 Puerto Rico Open is a great international platform for positioning Puerto Rico as an ideal destination for world-class golfing events. Puerto Rico offers golfers unique elements such as the diversity of more than twenty golf courses surrounded by unique beauty and located in spectacular hotel properties to delight both amateur and professional golfers.

The event plays into the PRTC's strategy of targeting the high-income traveler market. The number of excellent golf courses in the island and the new tourism properties that appeal to the high income traveler, such as the W in Vieques, the St. Regis, the JW Marriott, and Costa Isabela, considered by international observers to be the Scotia of the Caribbean beacuse of its difficulty and unique geography; are all reasons that make Golf a perfect fit with the PRTC's marketing strategy. "Golf has a high and positive relationship with the government's strategy and the Tourism Company for the development of tourism, specifically in the marketing of the destination itself," said González Lafuente. “This event has become the most important and only PGA event in the Caribbean that also significantly impacts our economy and sports Tourism,” said González Lafuente.

For the PRTC, sporting events like the Puerto Rico Open establish a direct link to get tourists to become more familiar with the Island, its people, athletes, culture and natural beauties, and to come to the destination and contribute positively to the hospitality industry and the economy. For this edition of the Puerto Rico Open, the Tourism Company has invested $2.4 million as the main sponsor and expects to generate over 6,500 room/nights.

The direct economic impact of the event is estimated at over $4.7 million and over $22 million indirectly. In addition, the Puerto Rico Open will expose the destination to an estimated 100 million households through Golf Channel programming, that in addition to the more than 65,000 persons that will attend the Open at the Trump International Golf Course in Río Grande.

The Puerto Rico Tourism Company has just made the commitment to sponsor the event through 2014, with an investment of $4.8 million; $2.4 million for each year. "This [sponsorship] has already been approved by the board of directors. I think it is a good investment to ensure that this event continues in Puerto Rico, for obvious reasons. It retains continuity and it is an event that is growing," said González Lafuente. "The feedback we have received from PGA is that it is an event that for its age is considered one of the best." González Lafuente described the PR Open as an economic development event. "At the end of the day it generates jobs and economic impact for our Island."

"At the Puerto Rico Tourism Company we are very satisfied with the achievements of the Puerto Rico Open in the Island and are especially proud to be chosen as the PGA Tour 2011 Most Fan Friendly Event,” said PRTC´s Executive Director. “This recognition should further motivate golfing fans to make it to the event and prove that Puerto Rico does it better,” said Mario González.

The Puerto Rico Open 2012 is held March 5 through 11 at the Trump International Golf Club in Río Grande.


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