Gurgaon’s Golf Course: Here’s where the business deals are just a putt away

Six months ago, when Coca-Cola India president Ventakesh Kini hosted an international business delegation and later, key business customers, he chose the super-luxury and state-of-the-art DLF Golf & Country Club over Delhi’s tony Trident or Oberoi hotels.

 

“The golf course is where you get at least three to four hours with your business associates, unlike, say, a hurried working lunch or dinner.

It’s a congenial environment, with the best facilities, conveniently located and, unlike any other sport, offers quality one-on one interaction???,said Kini, who lives next door at the super luxury condominium, the Magnolias.

 

The course is a draw for former SoftBank president Nikesh Arora, Deutsche Bank ex-chief executive Anshu Jain, Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra and cricketer Kapil Dev. “We often get feedback that this is a huge mood lifter once you drive in???,said Aakash Ohri, executive director at DLF Home Developers, who’s been with the group for 18 years and has seen the golf course come up from scratch. “Besides upkeep of the course itself, protecting the forest and bird sanctuary are challenges too.â€??

 

Varun Berry, biscuit maker Britannia’s managing director, now lives in Bengaluru but tries to catch up with close business associates such as executive search firm Egon Zehnder’s global coleader Sonny Iqbal when he visits. “It’s the ideal place to be and I prefer it as the place to nurture business relationships in a best-inclass environment???,Berry said. The late Madhavrao Scindia was among the first club members and his golfing legacy has been carried on by son Jyotiraditya. One of the first major events held here was the Johnnie Walker Classic in 2008.

 

For Samsung Electronics, which has its India headquarters across the road, the Golf & Country Club is perhaps among the biggest attractions with its 1,400 staffers, many of whom are Koreans, as is company president HC Hong. “Golf is historically a business sport and has always been a catalyst for big investments. Business being done on the golf course is not a myth, it’s a reality???, said DLF’s Ohri. While golf courses are known not to make money, it’s different for the venture owned by India’s largest real estate developer.

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