Holes-in-One for BRG Group
By Simon Tinkler
The golf industry in Vietnam has grown very quickly over the last 15 years, with over 30 golf courses now in operation. The current economic conditions have caused a slowdown and some golf courses are suffering as a result.
One group that has ridden the storm well and continues to make considerable inroads into the Vietnam golf industry is the BRG Group. Based in Hanoi and under the leadership of Chairwoman Madam Nguyen Thi Nga, the company will soon open its third golf course in the north of Vietnam.
Its first development is the well known Kings Island Golf Club, one of the first in Vietnam. With 36 holes, it is an extremely well designed and very popular golf course. Further down the coastline in Hai Phong is the second development, the Do Son Seaside Golf Resort, an 18-hole golf complex with an exceptional golf course and rated amongst the best in Vietnam.
Now the BRG Group has joined with the legendary Jack Nicklaus to construct the Legend Hill Golf Resort near Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport. This signature course will be unique in South East Asia because it features 18 holes and 36 greens, giving a multitude of varied tees to varied greens. Due to open in the near future, this golf course will very quickly be on the “must play” list of courses in Vietnam. I for one cannot wait to visit and play a round.
One area of golf that is often overlooked in Vietnam is junior golf, and here the BRG Group has taken the initiative by sponsoring the BRG Junior Golf Tour 2014. The first round has already been held at Do Son Seaside Resort and 30 juniors made the trip from Hanoi. Further rounds will be held in the Hanoi area and the champion will be the boy or girl with the most points over a minimum of six rounds.
It is encouraging to report a success story such as this about companies who have made a success in the Vietnamese golf industry. Golf will continue to flourish with developments such as the ones from the BRG Group.
In addition to the golf courses, the BRG Group has Hilton Hotels, one of the largest commercial banks in Vietnam, Honda dealerships and many other interests. The philosophy is very straightforward: each project must be sustainable and most importantly, must employ local labour. Of course, there is the need for professionals from outside of Vietnam to help with the running of the golf clubs and each person will pass on valuable knowledge to the Vietnamese. Do not expect to see ego-projecting buildings from this company – all developments are made for the business of golf and for community living.
The entrepreneurial Madam Nga also looks to the impact these projects have on Vietnam’s image. Her desire is that each development is seen from outside of the country as a sustainable and viable project, showcasing Vietnam as a place to invest for the future.