As a standalone event on the PGA Tour schedule this year, the Butterfield Bermuda Championship expects to attract a deeper field of top golfers. Befitting its elevated status, the event will also offer expanded options for corporate sponsors to join in with the excitement.
An additional hospitality structure on the Port Royal Golf Course and a second pro-am event to launch tournament week (November 6 to 12) will add significant scale to the Championship, enhancing the spectator experience and economic impact.
Under the revised PGA calendar, the Championship will be the penultimate of seven events in the 2023 FedEx Cup Fall schedule, with high stakes for the players. In addition to the $6.5 million purse, the field will be vying for valuable points to determine who keeps their PGA Tour card for 2024. The winner of the distinctive cedar trophy earns 500 FedEx Cup points, a two-year PGA Tour exemption and entry to the Players Championship, among other benefits.
The Championship has not competed with simultaneous PGA events over the past three years — thanks to the pandemic-related cancellation of the World Golf Championship-HSBC Champions event in China in each of those years – but 2023 marks the first time the standalone status has been made official.
“To own our own spot on the PGA Tour calendar is a real feather in our cap,” said Danielle Carrera, tournament director. “It’s a testament to how co-titles, the Bermuda Tourism Authority and Butterfield have invested in growing and promoting the event, and how they have encouraged players and supporters to get involved.
“It’s a move into the big leagues. In the last couple of years, we’ve made a big effort to grow the event and we’ve made huge strides by adding new features. With people getting excited about our elevated status, we are working to continue that trend this year.”
The most visible enhancement will be a new hospitality location called The Overlook. Located between the ninth and 18th greens, affording views of both from drinks rails around its perimeter, the 2,400-square-foot space features reserved tables and all-inclusive food-and-beverage service.
The new facility will complement the Longtail Club, the tournament’s premier space, located directly behind the 18th green, and the Digicel Business Ocean Club, the upgraded ticket option situated at Port Royal’s iconic 16th hole.
“We started talking to companies about The Overlook in February and March and by June, all 16 packages had sold out,” Carrera said. “The position is just awesome for watching golf. With the extra structure, the event will feel busier, it will look more impressive on TV and that will be great for the promotion of tourism and Bermuda.”
The extent of the television coverage illustrates the tournament’s promotional power for the island. In 2022, the Golf Channel gave the Championship 56 hours of coverage, enabling Port Royal’s spectacular vistas to be seen by 3.7 million viewers in more than 200 countries. Viewers tuned in for an average of 48 minutes.
A second pro-am event is another way the tournament is growing this year. The Wednesday Official Pro-Am, held on the eve of the Championship, has always been the most in-demand event associated with the tournament. It’s a “nine and nine” event, meaning the amateur teams play with two professionals, each for half of their round.
With team slots for the event selling out faster this year than ever before, the unmet demand to experience playing alongside some of the world’s best golfers was clear. So, Carrera said the Championship decided to add a second pro-am on the Monday of tournament week, November 6.
The Coca Cola Pro-Am presented by Butterfield & Vallis gives the teams the opportunity to play with the same pro for all 18 holes. Teams have the option of including two nights’ accommodation at the host hotel, the Hamilton Princess and Beach Club, with transportation between the course and the hotel provided. The same option is provided with the Wednesday Pro-Am.
One more significant difference with this year’s event will come as a result of its move from October to November, as the tournament week follows the end of Daylight Saving Time on November 5, when the clocks fall back an hour, meaning sunset will arrive before 5.30pm.
“This will cause earlier tee times, because it will be dark earlier than we are used to,” Carrera said. “That means an earlier finish on Sunday, but that’s OK — more time to celebrate our champion!”
Parties interested in purchasing hospitality, pro-am, or sponsorship packages should reach out to
Jevon Roberts at email@example.com
For more information on the Butterfield Bermuda Championship, visit www.butterfieldbdachampionship.com