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Indian golfers see Sanah as more than golfing destination

Indian golfers see Sanah as more than golfing destination

For a four-day familiarisation tour, Tourism Malaysia sent a group of Indian golf tour specialists and enthusiasts to Sabah.

KOTA KINABALU – Sabah is seen as more than just a golf destination by Indian golf tour professionals and aficionados who are in the state to discover courses with a distinctive setting.

The party of five Indian golfers came in Sabah last Tuesday and were astounded by the stunning backdrop of Kota Kinabalu and the kind welcome they got.

They are here on a four-day familiarisation trip organised by Tourism Malaysia, which includes a dinner given by Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, chairman of the Sabah Tourism Board, on the first day of the itinerary.

The group discussed how Sabah may attract visitors from India beyond only golfers owing to the state’s diverse holiday offerings at the dinner event.

Romit Bose, the top golf instructor in India, emphasised the accessibility of golf courses within resorts, hotel amenities, and the great weather for year-round golfing when he said Sabah’s opportunity is obvious.

“I manage a golf academy in New Delhi where I instruct players and develop young golfers who want to become professionals so they may participate in competitions. Sabah appeals to me as a venue for a competition. You should be able to draw between 300 and 500 youth golfers and their families by utilising everything that Sabah has to offer. Sabah should, in my opinion, be a vacation spot for families with children, said the managing director of The Golfing Hub.

Mahender Pal Khanna, the managing director of Diplomatic Travels, recognised that the breathtaking natural beauty of the state capital of Sabah alone is an attraction and that the presence of high-quality wellness resorts is an additional benefit for Indian tourists. “From what I’ve seen, Sabah is a wonderful location with a lot more to offer than simply golf. We also have a big wedding business, which you may take use of. I think direct flights from India would make it easier to welcome many visitors to Sabah,” he continued.

Members of the panel also discussed the possibility of establishing direct chartered flights from India to Sabah soon.

YB Khairul Firdaus bin Akbar Khan, Malaysia’s honourable deputy minister of tourism, arts and culture, and golf operators had a fruitful discussion at the South Asia Travel & Tourism Exchange (SATTE) 2023 in India in February, which led to the group’s trip.

In order to establish Sabah as a top golf destination for Indian tourists, we are delighted to highlight the state’s stunning golf courses and attractions. We are optimistic that Sabah will enchant Indian golfers and support the expansion of tourism in Malaysia through partnerships with industry players and improved connectivity,” said Khairul, who previously met the golfers at a luncheon.

The state of Sabah, according to Joniston, who also serves as the assistant minister for tourism, culture, and the environment, wants to provide golfers with a really exotic experience that is unique from that found in other golfing destinations. About 20 of our golf courses are bordered by verdant mountains, gorgeous beaches, and thick rainforests, offering a distinctive setting for golfers to enjoy. The number of golfers visiting Sabah has increased, and India is a new market for us. We sincerely want to see more Indian golfers and their families in Sabah taking advantage of our rich cultural legacy as well as golfing.

“This cultural immersion adds another dimension to the golfing trip, making it a well-rounded experience that combines sport, nature, and cultural exploration,” he claimed.

During their familiarisation tour, the party would play golf at the Sutera Harbour Golf and Country Club and the Dalit Bay Golf & Country Club. Additionally, the Nexus Golf Karambunai Resort would be inspected.

At the dinner were Datuk Sr Mohd. Yusrie Abdullah, Permanent Secretary of Sabah’s Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and the Environment; Manoharan Periasamy, Senior Director International Promotion Division (ASAF); Muhammad Akmal Hafiz Abdul Aziz, Deputy Director (North and East India); and Tay Shu Lan, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Sabah Tourism Board.

Source: traveldailynews

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