Itanhangá Golf Club Making A Bid At 2016

Itanhangá Golf Club Making A Bid At 2016

Posted on 08. May, 2011 by in Olympic Golf

Here on Olympic Golf News we are proud to provide information on the great game of golf joining the Olympics once again in 2016 Rio Games. With that here is one of the latest Press releases from one of the front running existing golf courses bid to host Olympic golf at Itanhangá Golf Club. It’s going to be interesting how the venue selection process shakes out it would be nice if it was an existing course to host this history making event in Rio. Here is the press release including a photo of soccer great Pele with Arthur Pires, president of Itanhanga Golf Club.


Olympic Dream 2016 Itanhangá

Itanhangá Board of Delegates Approves Club’s Plan to Host 2016 Olympic Golf Tournament

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – May 4th, 2011 – During its monthly board meeting on Sunday May 1st, 2011, the Itanhangá Golf Club board of delegates examined the plan to host the 2016 Olympic Golf Tournament and authorized club president, Arthur Porto Pires Jr., to proceed with negotiations. In a letter addressed to Peter Dawson, president of the International Golf Federation (IGF) sent via e-mail on April 21, 2011, Mr. Pires expressed his club’s desire to host the 2016 tournament. “The choice of Rio de Janeiro to host the 2016 Olympics is a just reason for Brazilians to celebrate and an opportunity for us at Itanhangá to have our premises considered by [the] IGF and the Olympic Committee to host the golf competition,” said Mr. Pires in the letter.

Itanhangá Golf Club is one of two existing golf clubs within the city limits of Rio de Janeiro that is under consideration to host to the 2016 tournament. After extensive analysis Itanhangá has emerged as the only existing club with the necessary space to host a championship tournament of this scale. Itanhangá Golf Club encompasses nearly three hundred picturesque acres centrally located just minutes from the Olympic Village. The club features two courses totaling twenty – seven holes (an 18-hole tournament course and a 9-hole practice course), a sprawling grass driving range, and an extensive clubhouse area with a spacious modern locker room facility.

The 18-hole tournament course will require minor improvements including additional yardage in order to adapt the course to the contract requirements of the IGF and International Olympic Committee (IOC). A number of course design professionals including representatives from the IGF have visited Itanhangá and have confirmed the course’s tournament potential subject to the necessary improvements. An initial survey completed by the club has shown that these improvements can be funded through the club’s share of tournament commercial operations revenue and will not require a large expenditure from the government.

In his letter to Mr. Dawson, Mr. Pires highlighted Itanhangá’s track record of hosting professional golf tournaments. “Itanhangá is consistently chosen for major Brazilian and international events for its world-class, though not overly difficult layout, and its spectacular natural setting and beauty,” he said in the letter. The European Tour chose Itanhangá to hold their first Latin American event in 1999, and the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) has made a yearly tour stop at Itanhangá since 2009.

In addition to providing a major championship caliber venue, Itanhangá’s Olympic project entitled “Olympic Dream Itanhangá 2016,” promises to leave a lasting social legacy on the local community while promoting interest in the game of golf in Brazil. “In light of the other alternatives that have been suggested for the tournament including the costly construction of a new municipal course on an sensitive wetlands area, Itanhangá felt obligated to offer a solution that is socially, fiscally, and environmentally responsible,” exclaimed Mr. Pires.

Soccer great and Brazilian national sports hero Pelé recently joined hands with Mr. Pires at Itanhangá in support of Itanhangá’s project (pictured below). Most recently Pelé has been acknowledged for his outspoken support of policies to improve the social conditions in Brazil.

Itanhanga Golf club and soccer great Pele bid for Olympic golf

(Pelé (left) with Arthur Pires (right): pictured with the “Olympic Dream Itanhangá 2016” project banner)

The Olympic Dream project foresees, as its social legacy for the 2016 Games, a technical/vocational school of hospitality and tourism for the surrounding community. The school would give local youths the skills they need to realize opportunities in the rapidly growing hospitality and tourism industry in Rio de Janeiro. Along the same line of thought, the project envisions equipping the school with a state-of-the-art golf simulator to encourage youth participation in the game of golf as players, caddies, and instructors. These youths would serve as ambassadors to game in their local communities. School operations would be funded by a percentage of the greens fees collected from guest players at Itanhangá after the Olympics.

Outside of the school, Itanhangá seeks to develop a grassroots campaign, in partnership with international golf organizations and professionals, to help grow the sport of golf in Brazil. Itanhangá believes this is the most cost effective and responsible way to develop the game of golf without burdening taxpayers with unnecessary expenses.

International Golf Hospitality LLC
Tommy Edmunds 703-598-1448
5839 Robeys Meadow Lane Fairfax, VA 22030 USA


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