By Kent Gray
Ayla Golf Club has joined global golf design, development, marketing and management network IMG Prestige.
The 800,000 square metre property on the shores of Jordan’s Red Sea in Aqaba joins Emirates Golf Club in Dubai as the second club in the Middle East with links to IMG Prestige, an “elite network” of clubs around the world. In addition to driving green fee revenue for clubs, IMG Prestige promises benefits for members of clubs within its network including preferred access, special rates, discounts and “privileges” offered by its partners and other clubs in the network, via the company’s concierge service.
Other venues under the IMG Prestige umbrella include Ryder Cup venue Le Golf National on the outskirts of Paris, Vietnam’s KN Golf Links Cam Ranh (like Ayla a Greg Norman design), renowned Cape Kidnappers and Kauri Cliffs in New Zealand and the prestigious London Club in England and Mount Juliet in Kilkenny, Ireland.
Ayla Golf Club, rated 9th in the 2020 Golf Digest Middle East Top 10 courses ranking, hosted the Jordan Mixed Open last year, a world-first mixed events featuring players from the European Challenge, Ladies European Tour and Staysure (Senior) Tour. The Greg Norman design is also destination partner of the MENA Tour and is working to host the completion of the regional developmental circuit’s COVID-19 disrupted season in a luxury encampment style lock-in later this year.
Ayla Golf Club head professional Chris Dodd trusts IMG Prestige will bring further exposure to the club and the Kingdom.
“Ayla is Jordan’s first championship golf venue and we are very proud of the experience we have to offer visiting golfers. The association with IMG Prestige makes total sense for us as we look to promote the club internationally,” Dodd said.
Russell Hannah, Senior Director of IMG Golf Course Services, described Ayla as a “unique destination” that IMG Prestige are “delighted to welcome…to the network”.
“The resort is a fabulous waterfront development offering an unforgettable experience to our club members. We hope to see international travel allowed very soon so everyone can enjoy everything this world-class facility has to offer.”
Ayla features a nine-hole, fully floodlit academy course in addition to the 18 hole championship course. Created in an architectural style that mimics the rolling green fairways of the course, the Ayla clubhouse includes a dedicated golf academy clubhouse, swing studio, putting studio, meeting room and gourmet restaurant.