The Solheim Cup, a biennial women's golf competition between Europe and the United States, is one of the most important events in women's golf worldwide.
Since its creation in 1990, it has transcended the sports field to become an opportunity for host cities and countries to promote their tourist destinations and sports infrastructures.
In 2023 the competition will take place at the Finca Cortesin golf club in Andalusia, from 18 to 24 September. This article analyses how this sporting event could affect tourism on the Costa Brava as well as in the rest of Spain.
The Solheim Cup organisers have appointed different ambassadors for each territory throughout the Iberian Peninsula. The ambassador selected for the Costa Brava area, through the club Golf Peralada, is Petra Darmstädter, who highlighted the importance of the Solheim Cup as a sporting event for the promotion of tourist destinations and women’s golf in Spain. As she put it, “the Solheim Cup is a unique opportunity to publicise the golf courses and tourist infrastructure on the Costa Brava, as well as to attract more visitors throughout the year”. In addition, she stressed the importance of this event in improving Spain’s image as a tourist destination in the golf industry.
The Costa Brava, a popular tourist destination
The Costa Brava is located on the northern coast of Catalonia, renowned for its golden sand beaches, picturesque fishing villages, rich culture and excellent cuisine. In addition, the area has several first-class golf courses, which makes it popular among golf lovers. Camiral Golf & Wellness is one such club located in Girona, just an hour’s drive from the Costa Brava.
Home to several major golf tournaments, including the European Tour and the Spanish Open, Camiral Golf & Wellness is a popular destination among tourists looking for a top-notch golf experience. With the celebration of the Solheim Cup in Spain, a unique opportunity opens up to spread the word about the Costa Brava’s golf courses and to promote it as a key tourist destination within the Iberian Peninsula.
The economic impact of the Solheim Cup
The Solheim Cup 2023 is an opportunity to attract thousands of visitors to the Costa Brava and generate significant revenue in terms of accommodation, transportation, restaurants and tourist activities. A large influx of both national and international tourists is expected while the competition is under way, which could have a major economic impact on the area. To date, media impact valued at 120 million euros has already been achieved, with 45,000 tickets sold. When all is said and done, it is estimated that the economic benefit will be around 200 million euros.
But the economic impact is not limited just to the days of the event. The promotion of the Costa Brava as a premier golf destination can serve to attract more visitors throughout the year, even outside the summer high season, which translates into benefits for both local businesses and the economy in general.
The Solheim Cup as an opportunity to improve Spain’s image
In addition to the economic impact, the Solheim Cup can have a positive effect on Spain’s image as a top-level tourist destination. Holding a sporting event of such prestige can generate greater visibility and recognition at the international level, thus improving the country’s image in the golf industry.
In short, it is a major sporting event that, besides offering entertainment and excitement to fans of women’s golf, will also have a significant impact on the economy and tourism of the host destinations.
In the case of the Costa Brava, the holding of the Solheim Cup in Spain in 2023 is a unique opportunity to promote the region as a key tourist destination for golf lovers. The region has first-class golf courses and excellent tourist infrastructure, which makes it an ideal option for those looking for a sports holiday in Spain.