On Course for a Successful Meeting

Five reasons to incorporate golf into your next retreat or event

By Peter Rockwood, Vice President of Sales, Salamander Hotels & Resorts

When holding a meeting, it’s easy to become consumed with conducting business inside and overlook the natural canvas and opportunities that the golf course affords. With a round of golf lasting from four to five hours, our Grand Golf Resorts Collection in Florida can provide everything from fresh air and exercise to significant deal-closing opportunities. Here are five reasons why you should incorporate golf into your next meeting.

  1. It’s a bonding opportunity. Hosting a golf outing is not only a great way to team-build within your organization, but it also forges a bond with clients who may be attending your meeting. Attendees can bond for hours on the course, learning more about their colleagues and clients – both professionally and personally. It also allows even the most amateur of golfer to walk in the footsteps of professionals and tackle the same obstacles. At Innisbrook Resort’s Copperhead Course, which will host the Valspar Championship in March, we frequently have clients who ask us to place flags and tees in the same locations that the professionals encounter. 
  2. Attendees can let loose.  While the backdrop of a beautiful resort helps break the monotony of a typical work day, attendees are often still tethered to laptops and smartphones and conducting business as usual in between PowerPoints. However, when golf is on the agenda, then you can have a little fun. Golf is a game that can be easily modified in its formats (think driving ranges and putting greens) to accommodate players of different backgrounds, ages and skill levels.
  3. Achieve personal goals. Meetings are designed to accomplish a set of business goals; however, by incorporating golf, you can also help attendees accomplish their personal goals, too. Many principles of golf instruction, such as concentration and application, can be broadly applied to personal and professional betterment. At Salamander’s Reunion Resort in Orlando, we often go beyond the typical golf clinic and immerse groups at the exclusive Annika Sorenstam ANNIKA Academy and the Frank Thomas Frankly Putting PAD, both of which are located on property.
  4. Closing business on the course. Golf is not only a leisure sport, but it is a great sales tool. You have time to get to know a client on a course, and there’s a significant amount of business conducted between tee and green. Why not give your attendees a chance to polish their game and golf patter for their next on-course sales call?
  5. Attendees get a workout. Let’s face it; many meetings involve lengthy and sedate sessions, as well as receptions that offer too many fruity cocktails and heavy hors d'oeuvres. However, when you take your group outside onto the golf course, you are immediately offering a low-impact physical activity. Golf can require lots of walking, strength training and stretching. And, walking our company’s nine courses is a request we’re increasingly seeing from groups. For example, the challenge of walking our Conservatory Course at Hammock Beach Resort in Palm Coast, which is the longest layout in the state of Florida, offers great exercise and a memorable experience.

About Salamander Hotels & Resorts

Salamander Hotels & Resorts is a privately owned and operated company based in Middleburg, VA, just outside Washington, D.C. Founded by entrepreneur Sheila C. Johnson in 2005, the company has a portfolio that features a collection of three stellar golf resorts including Innisbrook Resort near Tampa, Reunion Resort in Orlando and Hammock Beach Resort in Palm Coast; and the luxurious Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, a 340-acre equestrian-inspired property near Washington, D.C.

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