Here at foreUP, we love autumn, because even though we know it means the end of golf season is upon us, there is still so much happening in the golf world to be excited about! In just a couple of days, the NGCOA Golf Business TechCon will begin in Las Vegas, Nevada. We’ll be there, enjoying the opportunity to hear from other leaders and innovators in the golf technology world. If you’re wondering what to expect while you’re there, look no further than this guide.
TechCon will be held at the magnificent ARIA Resort & Casino which fits perfectly into the "technology" theme of the conference. In the magazine Popular Mechanics, ARIA was described as possibly "the most technologically advanced hotel ever built."
The headline speaker for the conference will be Jenny Thomassian, Head of Industry at Google Travel. She’ll be talking about the intersection of artificial intelligence and hospitality, and how to harness the power of technology to create a more interactive and personalized experience for customers in an age of ever-increasing complexity.
Among those addressing us will be executives from Yamaha, Teesnap, Chronogolf, Players 1st, Rain Bird, Tag Marshal, Club Prophet, among others. They will be covering topics like:
- Using GPS to market your course
- The intersection of technology and irrigation
- Online booking
- Sales Funnels
- Tournament Management
91% of attendees interviewed said that the material presented at TechCon was useful and met their business needs, and 97% would recommend it to other golf course operators. In other words, your time will be well-spent at whatever session you choose to attend.
Things to See
Just minutes from the Strip, this is the true heart of Downtown Vegas. More family-friendly and less glitzy (though no less glamorous) than the Strip, Fremont Street still offers plenty of the classic Vegas attractions. Bursting with restaurants, shops, and casinos, this places is sure to have something for everyone in your group. Free street concerts only add to the high-energy ambiance at this hip spot.
The Mob Museum
What would Las Vegas be without its association with organized crime? This museum explores those themes, as well as the history of organized crime and the government’s relentless pursuit to eradicate such organizations. If museums don’t suit your fancy, then check out the replica speakeasy in the basement for some bootleg moonshine (or something like that).
300 Stewart Avenue | https://themobmuseum.org/ | Museum 9-9, bar 9-12
Places to Eat
Located in the Four Queens Resort and Casino near Freemont Street, Hugo’s Cellar will take you back to the days when Las Vegas was still Sam’s Town. Americana fare in a location that probably hasn’t been updated since the 50’s, Hugo’s recalls a bygone era when Vegas was nothing more than a loose collection of casinos famous for their buffets.
202 Fremont Street | 702-385-4011 | 5-10
Lotus of Siam
Lotus of Siam is probably as far removed in feeling and cuisine from Hugo’s as you can get, but it’s no less tasty. Winner of the James Beard award, this family-owned restaurant is possibly the best Thai food in America, but its price puts in the grasp of normal citizens. Be sure to book plenty in advance, though, because bookings fill up quickly.
620 E Flamingo Rd | lotusofsiamlv.com | 5:30-10:00
Places to Golf
Play with the Pros—TPC Las Vegas
This supremely challenging, gorgeously-landscaped course is Las Vegas' top spot for tour players and casual golfers alike. With Red Rock Canyon serving as a natural backdrop, this course has no shortage of beautiful views, from the desert landscape to the Vegas skyline. The 13th hole, nicknamed "Death Valley," will cement this course in your memory as a high-risk, high-reward set of links.
9851 Canyon Run Drive | tpc.com/lasvegas
For the glamour—Shadow Creek
A famously underrated course, this ranks #17 on Golf.com’s “Top 100 Courses You Can Play” and for good reason. Designed by famed architect Tom Fazio and often booked out by the Jonses of the US, this course is a delight to play on. But is it worth the price tag (which doesn’t include the mandatory caddie)? You’ll just have to find out for yourself.
3 Shadow Creek Dr, North Las Vegas | www.shadowcreek.com
Just wanna golf—Wildhorse Golf Club
Located southeast of Mccarran Airport, Wildhorse Golf Club is a great championship course (‘60s Sahara Invitational, ‘83 PGA Championship) that, unlike Shadow Creek, doesn’t require you to take a limo to the course. And for tee times as low as $35 in the week, it really can’t be beat for quality to price ratio.
3799 S Las Vegas Blvd | wildhorse.play18.com
With so many options for entertainment, we’re sure that you won’t be bored during your stay in Vegas. There is so much to learn and do just at the conference that opportunities for other activities will probably be slim. But when you do venture out of your room at night, looking for some fun, please remember: The house always wins.