Half Moon resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica is the golf resort of the year, tour operators say
Somehow, the simple title Golf Resort of the Year just doesn't do justice in the case of Half Moon, the storied luxury resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica.
Indeed, Half Moon resort - home of Half Moon Golf Course - has received one of its top honors in more than a half century since its founding, capturing the Golf Resort of the Year in the Rest of the World category at the annual International Association of Golf Tour Operators Awards.
The IAGTO Awards are considered among the resort world's most prestigious, with voting by more than 300 golf tour operators from 45 countries. In other words, industry experts who stake their reputations on sending golfers around the globe.
Half Moon topped more than 2,000 golf resorts, joining such past winners in that category as Druids Glen Golf Club in Ireland, Turnberry in Scotland, Mission Hills in China, Sandy Lane Resort in Barbados and Arabella Golf Club in South Africa.
"We are honored to be named among such legendary golf resorts in the world," said Aram Zerunian, Half Moon's general manager. "This award affirms the work we have invested to continuously improve our product and the quality service offered by the over 800 men and women who work at Half Moon."
The resort features a Robert Trent Jones Sr.-designed, par-72 championship golf course, recently renovated by Roger Rulewich, and the Half Moon Golf Academy, directed by Scottish pro, Ewan Peebles.
Half Moon was a founding member of the Rose Hall Golf Association, a collection of Jamaica's best championship courses located in the exclusive Rose Hall enclave. Golfers staying at Half Moon can play at the Cinnamon Hill Golf Course and the White Witch Golf Course.
The Golf Resort of the Year category was judged on customer satisfaction, quality of golf course and accommodation, value for money, accessibility to tee times as well as speed of communication and quality of service of the golf resort sales and marketing team.
The IAGTO voting was kept quiet, and Half Moon was not aware it had been nominated, much less in contention for top honors.
"We learned about it just before it was made public," said Marcia McLaughlin, the resort's public relations manager.
The award category ranks in prestige with the AAA four-diamond status Half Moon has maintained consistently for over 25 years, McLaughlin said. "You can never get used to the big awards. To be singled out, what with so many great golf resorts around the world and in the region, it is one of the top honors anyone can get. We're very excited about it."
For more information, see www.halfmoon.com.
December 8, 2008