All the latest news and updates from the Ernie Els Group.
1. The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel Partners with Ernie Els
Ernie Els and The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel have created a partnership with the goal of continuing the growth of golf in Asia, it was announced on 12 June 2014. Ernie will wear The Venetian Macao logo on his right collar, back of hat and back yolk. “I’m so excited to represent The Venetian Macao,” Els said. “As a global player, I have travelled the world my entire career and I can say with certainty that it is one of the most extraordinary, elegant and atmospheric resorts I have visited. It’s luxurious and comfortable, but lively at the same time – it’s my kind of place and thankfully this partnership gives me an excuse to return frequently!”
Els – an Asian Tour ambassador – will also assist in marketing and promotion of the Venetian Macau Open, an Asian Tour event slated to tee off for the 16th time from October 23-26 at Macau Golf & Country Club. The Venetian Macau Open is promoted by IMG and 2014 is the third successive year The Venetian Macao has title sponsored the event in line with its long-standing objective of establishing Macau as Asia’s leading business, leisure and entertainment destination. Since its inauguration in 1998, Macau Open has welcomed top names like Lee Westwood, Colin Montgomerie, Nick Faldo, Fred Couples, Vijay Singh, Padraig Harrington, Thongchai Jaidee, and, in 2013, Els.
“My first experience with the Venetian Macau Open was last year and I’m going to play the tournament until they tell me to stop coming!” Els said. “I could not quite claim the victory in 2013 and I’m looking forward to taking another crack at it. This is a tournament that will succeed in growing and developing golf in Asia – particularly in Macau – and it will become a true centerpiece of the Asian Tour.”
The Venetian Macao, as part of Sands China’s innovative and interconnected integrated resort city, Cotai Strip Resorts Macao, regularly brings Asia’s and the world’s biggest events and celebrities to Macau. Superstars of music, film and sport from Asia and around the world have taken centre stage at the Cotai Arena and The Venetian Theatre, including the Rolling Stones, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, the Police, Beyoncé, Alicia Keys, George Benson, Manny Pacquiao, Zou Shiming, Cung Le, Roger Federer and Pete Sampras.
About The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel
Opened in 2007, The Venetian® Macao-Resort-Hotel is Macao’s first integrated resort featuring stunning replicas of the famous canals and architectural icons of Venice, Italy. The Venetian Macao features 3,000 suites, 1.2 million square feet (111,000 square metres) of convention and meeting facilities as well as a 15,000-seat Cotai Arena designed for world-class sports events and electrifying entertainment. The Venetian Macao is also home to the unique, 1,800-seat luxury Venetian Theatre, hosting the best in international and Chinese entertainment; more than 30 renowned restaurants; TAIVEXMALO Day Hospital & Spa; the incredibly fun QUBE indoor playground and more than 300 retailers at Shoppes at Venetian. Outdoor recreation areas include swimming pools and cabanas and a mini-golf course. For more information, please visit www.venetianmacao.com.
2. Els for Autism Golf Challenge up and running in its fourth year
The fourth annual Els for Autism Golf Challenge, the largest international charity-driven amateur golf tournament in history, is well into its stride after successful early season events at exclusive venues such as Floridian National Golf Club, Troon North, Trump National Doral and East Lake Country Club. This season-long event series takes place between May and September at some of North America’s finest golf courses and culminates in a spectacular series Finale attended by Ernie and his friends from the PGA TOUR in Las Vegas on 10-11 October.
As in previous years, the Golf Challenge schedule drops in at a selection of first-class PGA TOUR stops and major venues including Baltusrol, Harbour Town Golf Links, Trump National Doral, TPC Boston, Hazeltine, and this year’s US Open venue Pinehurst.
In this event series, a team’s fundraising ability is valued as much as their performance on the golf course. Indeed, all teams that fundraise $13,000 or more will join Ernie and his friends from the PGA TOUR at the series Finale in Las Vegas. For more information on how to enter please visit the website: www.elsforautism.com.
5 May, Floridian National Golf Club, Florida
12 May, Troon North Golf Club, Arizona
12 May, Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club, Vancouver
12 May, Trump National Doral, Florida
26 May, Royal Montreal Golf Club, Quebec
9 June, East Lake Golf Club, Atlanta
16 June, Olympia Fields Country Club, Illinois
21 June, Bully Pulpit Golf Course, North Dakota
30 June, TPC Craig Ranch, Texas
14 July, Baltusrol Golf Club, New Jersey
21 July, Chambers Bay, Washington
21 July, Glencoe Golf & Country Club, Calgary
28 July, Philadelphia Cricket Club, Philadelphia
28 July, Scarboro Golf Club, Toronto
3 August, Pinehurst Resort, North Carolina
4 August, Rockrimmon Country Club, Connecticut
11 August, Caves Valley Golf Club, Maryland
18 August, TPC Jasna Polana, New Jersey
18 August, TPC Boston, Massachusetts
25 August, Hazeltine National Golf Club, Minnesota
8 September, Harbour Town Golf Links, South Carolina
15 September, University of Texas Golf Club, Texas
22 September, Trump National Jupiter, Florida
3. More big titles for South Africa’s No.1 amateur Bezuidenhout
Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation’s Christiaan Bezuidenhout is busy reaffirming his status as the No.1 ranked amateur in the country by playing championship-winning golf on a consistent basis. The 19-year old shot an impressive 14-under par (70, 66, 70, 68) to win the Sanlam Cape Province Open in some style. He then followed that up with a six-shot win and successful defence of his Western Province Amateur Stroke Play title. It was his third significant amateur title of the year. In fact, that was an outstanding tournament for the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation with three of its members (Bezuidenhout, 15-year old Luca Filippi, and 16-year old David Meyers) finishing in the top four.
“I played some of my best golf ever over the first two days,” said Bezuidenhout, who was leading by nine shots after the second round. “The South Easter was straight into you or right from the back. The conditions were really tough. I kept my cool and it worked brilliantly.”
Bezuidenhout is spending more than two-and-a-half months in England this summer, mixing it with the best amateurs in Europe. He will be playing in 11 top amateur events while staying with one of England’s top players, Toby Tree. “We have become very good friends. Toby is part of England’s elite squad which has come out and played in our top tournaments the last two years,” Bezuidenhout explained. “The fact that I can stay with him made this trip possible. We will travel together to all the tournaments. This is an opportunity that hopefully will take my game to the next level.”
We wish him well on his adventures.
4. Rugby legends stop by for a visit at Ernie Els Wines
Ernie Els Wines was privileged to host some of the southern hemisphere’s top rugby stars as the Western Force rugby team lunched at the property on their recent tour of Cape Town. The players were treated on their rest day to a relaxing afternoon touring the winery and Ernie’s impressive trophy room, before settling down on the terrace for a delicious traditional South African braai (barbecue) luncheon. When these athletes were sufficiently nourished with some quality South African beef steaks and salads, they had a team chipping competition which was great fun and the banter and jovial atmosphere helped them to unwind during a hectic two week tour of the country. One of the 2014 competition’s top performers, Wallaby winger Nick Cummins (nicknamed the “honeybadger”), particularly enjoyed the visit to Ernie Els Wines and took a bit of extra time off to do some bass fishing in the dams between the vineyards.
It was a great experience for the Ernie Els Wines team to host this group, who are great ambassadors for their country and the game of rugby. The Western Force are currently in the top half of the 2014 SupeRugby log and are challenging for a spot in the upcoming playoffs. We wish them best of luck with the rest of the season
5. Ernie’s Malaysian Masterpiece Scoops Prestigious International Award
Ernie Els Design is proud to announce that its recently opened Els Club Teluk Datai has just received a huge accolade in being named the region’s ‘Best Golf Course’ at the 2014 Asia-Pacific Property Awards. This magnificent layout, located within a centuries-old rainforest on the banks of the beautiful Andaman Sea, will now go on to compete for the prize ‘World’s Best New Golf Course’ against other regional winners from Africa, the Middle East, Europe, UK and the Americas at the glittering International Property Awards ceremony in Dubai.
Ken Kosak, General Manager of The Els Club Teluk Datai, was delighted that the golf course has received such significant recognition only weeks after its official opening in April, which also saw it collect the ‘5-Star Award’ as Malaysia’s top golfing venue. He said: “Anyone who is familiar with golf in the Asia-Pacific region knows that there is an incredible variety of golf courses of unerring quality here, so to be named the No.1 course in the region is an incredible achievement for The Els Club Teluk Datai. Our designer, Ernie Els, has created one of the world’s most captivating golfing challenges, taking advantage of the spectacular tropical landscape here on the island of Langkawi to create something truly unique, which has already received widespread critical and public acclaim. This prestigious award is testament to his vision and the expertise of his design team, as well as the unwavering conditioning and quality that can be found across Troon’s wide portfolio of leading golfing venues, and we’re sure this will be the first of many accolades to come in the future.”
Ernie last visited the golf course in October 2013. “The site here is one of the most unique I have come across anywhere in the world,” said Ernie, “and the end product is simply breathtaking. We thought long and hard about the location of our first Els Club in Asia and in DRH have found great partners to help create a course that will have worldwide appeal. The whole team is thrilled with this golf course and I’m excited to come back and play it some day soon hopefully, when my schedule allows.”
The first of two Els Clubs to open in Malaysia, Teluk Datai is without doubt one of the most intriguing golf course re-designs to open in recent times. Owned by the Malaysian Government-established Destination Resorts & Hotels Sdn Bhd (DRH), the course is nestled within an ancient rainforest featuring towering tropical foliage and blessed with unforgettable vistas overlooking the Andaman Sea.
The much-loved region of Teluk Datai is also home to the award-winning luxury resort, The Datai Langkawi, which is internationally recognised for its unsurpassed service excellence. Together with Els’ new masterpiece they will play an integral role in realising DRH’s vision for the development of luxury golf experiences. In addition, Els was selected by DRH to design The Els Club Desaru Coast, located in the southern region of Johor Bahru, completing The Els Club Malaysia portfolio.
Asia-Pacific has achieved considerable success at the International Property Awards in recent years, emerging as the best performing region at the ‘Oscars’ of the property and real estate industry, with an impressive 18 ‘World’s Best’ Awards in 2013. Stuart Shield, President of the International Property Awards, is confident of further success for the region at the year-ending ceremony. He said: “We will all now wait to see if Asia-Pacific can not only retain the title of best performing region of the world in the International Property Awards but also beat its own record for yet another successive year. Each region is highly competitive and with levels of excellence within the property industry rising annually, this makes the competition hugely exciting as it heads towards the final conclusion in December.”
Further information on The Els Club Malaysia is available at www.elsclubmalaysia.com
The Els Club Teluk Datai Course, an 18-hole championship golf course is set in a beautiful island in the northern state of Peninsular Malaysia in Langkawi. Marked as one of the most incredible courses within The Els collection, The Els Club Teluk Datai Course is nestled within a centuries-old rainforest with towering lush tropical foliage, offering the finest golfing experience to avid golfers. It is also located adjacent to the award winning resort, The Datai Langkawi that promises subtle elegance with best-in-class services and amenities that will be a perfect accommodation for golfers to unwind and relax.
About Destination Resorts and Hotels (DRH)
Destination Resorts and Hotels Sdn Bhd (“DRH”) is a strategic owner and developer of world class premier destinations. Established by the Malaysian Government’s investment arm, Khazanah Nasional Berhad (“Khazanah”), DRH is a catalyst for the continued development of Malaysia’s luxury leisure and tourism sector by providing relevant expertise focused on investment, development, management and oversight of world-class premier resorts, hotels and attractions. Its current key investment portfolio comprises of Desaru Coast, the region’s first integrated luxury destination located at Johor’s Desaru coastline, Little Red Cube and Traders Hotel at the luxury waterfront of Puteri Harbour, Nusajaya along with Teluk Datai, Langkawi, a luxury eco-tourism destination surrounded by ancient rainforest and breathtaking views of the Andaman Sea, including the award-winning The Datai Langkawi. Working with world renowned and reputable partners that are the best in the industry, DRH is set to expand domestically and internationally as a premier luxury hotel, resort and residences investment, development and management company. For more information on DRH and its developments, please visit www.drh.com.my.
About Troon Golf
Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, Troon Golf EMEA is committed to developing Troon Golf’s presence in Europe, Middle East and Africa. This rapidly expanding division now oversees operations at 38 courses in 14 countries including Dubai, England, Russia, and Spain with further expansion planned across all regions. Headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., Troon is the world’s largest golf management company, overseeing operations at Troon Golf (daily-fee & resort) and Troon Privé (private) properties located in 31 states and 26 countries. Additionally, 47 Troon facilities enjoy a Top 100 ranking by national or international publications. Troon properties include The Grove, London, England; Classic Club, Palm Desert, Calif; Lumine Golf Club Tarragona, Spain; and Saadiyat Beach Golf Resort in Abu Dhabi.
About Teluk Datai, Langkawi, Kedah
Located to the north-west of Langkawi Island, set amidst centuries-old rainforest, sparkling limestone outcrops and serene beaches, is Teluk Datai. Aimed to be a premier eco-tourism destination, the Teluk Datai master plan includes the development of 6-star and 5-star luxury resorts and villas, cliff-top bungalows, golf-view and sea-view bungalows as well as 5-star condominiums and homes overlooking the Andaman Sea. DRH portfolio in Langkawi includes The Datai, an award-winning 5-star resort hotel that was awarded ‘World’s Best Luxury Island Resort’ at the 2012 World Luxury Hotel Awards and TripAdvisor’s 2012 Travelers’ Choice Award. Recent accolades include Country Winner for Best Luxury Destination Spa by the 2014 World Luxury Spa Awards and a nomination for the World Luxury Hotels Awards 2014 It offers world-class amenities, luxurious spas and boasts its own peaceful stretch of white sandy beaches overlooking the stunning waters of the Andaman Sea.