International Association of Golf Tour Operators will embark on America’s Summer Golf Capital for the first time.
Petoskey, MI – The 15th IAGTO North America Golf Tourism Convention (NAC) will be hosted by BOYNE Golf in scenic, golf-rich Northern Michigan, June 17-21, 2024. BOYNE Golf is a collection of 10 golf courses at three alluring resort destinations set among the charming lakeside towns of Petoskey, Harbor Springs, and Boyne City and near the enchanting coastline of Lake Michigan.
The announcement was made by NAC organizer and global golf tourism industry organization IAGTO at Saddlebrook Resort in Florida where the 2023 NAC convention attracted tour operators from all over the world as well as IAGTO member golf destination suppliers from across the Americas.
“We are delighted to be taking the 15th North America Golf Tourism Convention (NAC) to Michigan in 2024. This will be a great opportunity to showcase the golf destinations of this Great Lakes state to leading golf travel operators from more than 20 countries,” said Peter Walton, Chief Executive, IAGTO. “This will be the first time that IAGTO has staged the NAC in the Great Lakes region. This event will place BOYNE Golf and the surrounding golf destinations at the heart of the golf tourism industry for the coming 12 months.”
Bringing the IAGTO Convention and its more than 350 golf tour operators and suppliers from around the globe to BOYNE Golf will showcase the bountiful natural beauty and hospitality of Northern Michigan was a cooperative effort. BOYNE Golf led the effort, with support from Pure Michigan, the area tourism bureaus in Gaylord, Traverse City, and Petoskey, Cherry Capital Airport (TVC), and America’s Summer Golf Capital (ASGC). The cooperation of all was integral in attracting this one-of-a-kind conference to the idyllic Northern Michigan region.
The ASGCA destination features a collection of eight resort properties representing 26 golf courses designed by the world’s finest golf architects, including Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Robert Trent Jones Sr., Arthur Hills, Tom Fazio, and Rick Smith.
“IAGTO is the leader in International Golf Tourism and we are excited to host tour operators and resorts from all over the world at Boyne Mountain in 2024, stated Stephen Kircher, CEO and President of Boyne Resorts. “Hosting their North American Conference will bring new levels of awareness to the golf vacation opportunities in Northern Michigan. It is unquestionably one of the great summer golf destinations in the United States and we are privileged to showcase the outstanding BOYNE Golf experiences our resorts and courses provide and the limitless summer vacation experiences that exist in Michigan.”
The BOYNE Golf story began in the mid-50s when ski industry pioneer, Everett Kircher, developed a nine-hole course to attract summer business and retain staff at Boyne Mountain Resort. With the vision of taking golf to a new level when he developed The Highlands (formally Boyne Highlands) in 1963, Kircher hired the No. 1 course designer of the time, Robert Trent Jones Sr., to design the regions first nationally acclaimed golf course and The Heather opened for play in 1966. Since then, BOYNE Golf has grown to one of the most recognized destinations regionally and nationally, highlighted by the quality and variety their ten courses offer and the ease of access from all over the world.
“We are thrilled to welcome golf tour operators and industry professionals from across North America and around the world to experience the world-class golf, ideal summer climate, and “Up North” Pure Michigan hospitality that have made Michigan the country’s top summer golf destination,” said Dave Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan.
The IAGTO Convention is open to golf resorts, golf clubs, hotels, DMCs, tourist boards, DMOs, DMCs and other golf tourism suppliers primarily from the USA, Canada, Mexico, Latin America and the Caribbean but also from around the world. Suppliers and buyers pre-schedule appointments with each other for two days of meetings.
The event begins with a Golf Tournament over two of the destination’s outstanding golf courses and will incorporate both a Welcome and Farewell evening function. In addition, attendees will also be able to participate in pre-post events at ASGCA partner destinations.
“Domestic golf tourism has never been stronger, and by bringing NAC to the shores of Lake Michigan, BOYNE Golf has ensured that international golf travel will become a valuable added resource, sustainable for the long term. In addition to two days of back-to-back meetings, the participating golf travel specialists will be provided with the opportunity to experience the golf courses and destination first-hand both before and after the convention, at the best time of year,” explains Walton. “The NAC is the most important golf tourism trade event in the USA and attracts domestic golf travel specialists as well as top producing tour operators from Europe, Canada, Latin America, Asia and Australasia.”
For more information about attending or becoming a member of IAGTO, please visit https://www.iagto.com
Established in 1997, IAGTO is the global trade organization of the golf tourism industry and has 2400 members in over 90 countries including almost 700 golf tour operator members in 61 countries, which control more than 90% of golf holiday packages sold worldwide and which collectively have annual sales of over €2.5 billion. IAGTO runs annual Asia, Europe, and North America Golf Tourism Conventions, along with regular Destination Conventions. IAGTO established the International Golf Travel Writers Association in 2000, the year in which the first prestigious annual IAGTO Awards also took place.
About BOYNE Golf
Boyne Resorts has been named one of North America’s “Premier Resorts” (Gold) by GOLF Magazine. The Inn at Bay Harbor and Bay Harbor Golf Club, Boyne’s flagship properties, feature 45-holes including three golf course combinations designed by Arthur Hills (Links/Quarry, Quarry/Preserve, and Preserve/Links), and the scenic Crooked Tree Golf Club, with one of the most beautiful and iconic hotels in America, all set along a scenic five-mile stretch of Lake Michigan shoreline.
The Highlands at Harbor Springs, rated the No. 1 Golf Resort for Value by Golf.com, features 72 holes of premier golf design. The Heather, the 2019 NGCOA Course of the Year, was designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr., while the Hills Course was crafted by Arthur Hills. In addition, the resort features The Donald Ross Memorial, which is a rendition of the legendary architect’s great holes from around the country, and the always-fun Moor course. The Highlands is the perfect buddy trip destination for golfers who like to play as many holes as they can during the long summer daylight hours northern Michigan features.
Boyne Mountain not only features two fun 18-hole courses (The Monument and Alpine), along with the charming Mountain Grand Lodge & Spa, it is also the leading family friendly golf destination in the region with the Avalanche Bay Indoor Waterpark, junior golf camps, and various kid golf programs. Golf Digest named Boyne Mountain one of its “Top-10 Destinations for Family Golf Trips.”
Visit www.boynegolf.com for more information.