Golf tourists are the highest average spenders in the world. How can golf tourism be leveraged for the benefit of a hotel? What operational adaptations need to be made for the new world? How can golf compliment real estate development and a hotel while enhancing the value of the business?
Robbie Greenfield Sports Presenter – Dubai Eye 103.8
Sports Presenter – Dubai Eye 103.8
Robbie has been finding any excuse to talk golf on Dubai’s airwaves for the best part of a decade now. One half of Off Script Extra Time’s sports presenting team on Dubai Eye 103.8, he is also the former editor of Golf Digest Middle East. In recent years he has been the official starter at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic and hosted the prizegiving presentation at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.
In conversation with
Mark Chapleski President – Troon International Division
President – Troon International Division
Mark Chapleski has more than 30 years of experience in the golf industry, but has been in and around golf his entire life. Prior to joining Troon, Mark enjoyed a successful collegiate golf career at Miami University and then briefly played professional golf in various parts of the world before settling into the business of golf. He has worked at several top private and resort properties including the ultra-exclusive Vintage Club in Palm Desert, the Marriott Desert Springs Resort, Ko Olina Golf Club in Hawaii, and The Phoenix Country Club in Miyazaki, Japan.
Mark joined the Troon team in late 1999 and moved to Tokyo Japan in mid-2000 to act as Director of Operations for Troon in Asia. In his 4 years in Japan, along with management of several high profile clubs, Troon completed due diligence of over 200 golf courses for various investment banks and assisted Goldman Sachs in the creation of a new golf brand in Japan, Accordia Golf. He was appointed as Area Managing Director in 2004 and promoted to Vice President for Troon Middle East in 2008, Senior Vice-President of Troon ME/Asia Pacific in 2015 and President of Troon International in 2017. Troon ME/Asia Pacific headquarters are located in Dubai Media City, Dubai, UAE.
Christopher May Chief Executive Officer – Dubai Golf
Chief Executive Officer – Dubai Golf
With over twenty five years experience in the golf industry, currently Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Golf which owns and manages Dubai’s leading golf clubs, Emirates Golf Club, Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club and Jumeirah Golf Estates. Dubai Golf has been at the forefront of developing golf in the Gulf region, in particular promoting Dubai as a golfing destination and annually hosting prestigious European Tour events with the Omega Dubai Desert Classic and the Omega Dubai Moonlight Ladies Classic.
Previous career experience in the UK include managerial roles at the Jack Nicklaus designed London Golf Club, Woodbury Park Golf and Country Club for former Formula One World Champion Nigel Mansell and Marriott Tudor Park Golf and Country Club.
Chris graduated from Loughborough University and Nottingham Trent University where he successfully achieved an MSC in Recreation Management and a BSC in Sport Science.
In 2010 Chris became the first person in the Gulf region to successfully pass the CCM examination through CMAE and has since achieved re-certification in 2015. Dubai Golf hosted the first MDP1 course in the region last year and will host both MDP1 and MDP2 courses in May 2017, providing aspiring managers with invaluable educational opportunities.
Chris has run both the London and New York marathons, as well as many half marathons and 10km races, and continues to play squash, ski, run and bike in an attempt to keep fit! Chris is married to Clare and has two daughters Gracie and Jodie.
Tom Phillips Head of Middle East – PGA European Tour
Head of Middle East – PGA European Tour
As Head of Middle East for the European Tour, Tom is responsible for the development of the men’s professional golf tour across the region.
The Middle East is home to six European Tour events, including the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai – the biggest first prize in tournament golf and the finale to the year-long Race to Dubai. The region is also home to some of the Tour’s most committed partners.
Based in Dubai since 2019, Tom previously lived in Asia for 14 years where roles included CEO of the Hong Kong Golf Association and the Faldo Series, Director of Faldo Design and Consultant for the Mission Hills Group. In total, he has spent more than 20 years in the golf and leisure industry, working with national golf federations and international sports organisations in more than 40 countries worldwide.