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Chris BaldwinThis Week at June 7, 2006

Forget all the talk about blocking borders, let's start importing Mexican hospitality

Border security, or border sanctuary, dominates the headlines. George W. and The Terminator get in fights over it. CNN's Lou Dobbs has made a career talking only about it. The furor always seems to center on Mexico. Some people want to build a fence. A few retired guys with nothing else to do in Arizona (obviously not golfers) take it upon themselves to play John Wayne.

Whatever we do let's wait - long enough to import the great attitudes of Mexico's hospitality workers.

No U.S. service business could use this cheer lift more than the golf industry. Spend time playing golf in Los Cabos - Mexico's seaside wonder corridor - and it's like you've dropped into an unknown fourth dimension of service. All the golf pros and clubhouse workers actually smile at you. They truly seem happy to be there and not just bitter they're not out on the PGA Tour chasing Tiger Woods themselves. And (gasp!) - they go out of their way to help any golfer.

It's shocking and hard to digest. Your first few days playing golf in Mexico, you're liable to keep waiting for the other spike to drop. Surely, this is some kind of scam. It's golf. Customers don't come first. That's crazy talk.

Only the more time you spend around guys like Fernando Ortiz, the pro at the Cabo del Sol Ocean Course, the more you become convinced it's real.

"Golf is supposed to be a joy of life," Ortiz said, throwing his arms up in air.

This service phenomenon is not just limited to the golf courses either. The hotel staffs are noticeably nicer, noticeably more determined to please.

An American who's worked in major hotels explained it this way: "In the U.S., people give good service because they think they can get something out of it: A tip, a good rating. In Mexico, there's a real pride in just delivering that service."

Do whatever you want with the borders. Just make sure some of these hospitality lessons manage to leak into this country first.

As always, welcomes your comments.

Myrtle Beach Tourism - Best of 2006-Sea Trail Golf Resort

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World CupThe World Cup: Finding
the winners using golf

The 2006 World Cup in Germany promises to be a spectacle that enraptures the planet. And like any major sporting event, the outcome can usually be determined by examining one key factor - the competing nations' golf scene. With nations like England, the U.S. and Portugal competing in soccer's biggest spectacle in Germany, it's obvious that the nation that swings best will kick best. Find out who the winners will be here!

Also: Plan your golf trip with

Golf Tampa Bay! Florida's hottest new golf destination has gorgeous sugar-white beaches and an intriguing collection of first-rate courses.

PodcastSorenstam vs. Wie: the ratings
tug-of-war, AmEx Women's
Golf Week, and staying cool

Why hasn't Annika stepped up and attempted to qualify for the U.S. Open? And, Attention all women! This is OUR week! Go to Play Golf America, find out which course is hosting American Express Women's Golf Week and attend! Also: Our usual "slew" of golf tips.

Also: Subscribe to our RSS feed to get each week's show

Palm Springs - La Quinta Resort and Spa

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Scotland - Prestwick G.C.Old Tom played here too:
Try Prestwick Golf Club,
birthplace of the British Open

In Scotland, most the famous links courses have something to brag about. The Prestwick Golf Club has even more to brag about than many, being the birthplace of the British Open. The club hosted the first 12 British Opens, and a few more since. In the early days Prestwick had only 12 holes, and first prize was a red Morocco leather belt with silver clasps, a replica of which is in the clubhouse.

Also: Reader lauds Fraserburgh Golf Club in Aberdeenshire

HiltonHead Golf PromoCLIENT FEATURE

Q&A with Hilton Head Golf
Vacations' President Chris Gariti

"We are located in Hilton Head and golf packages are all we do. We play the courses we recommend and we preview the accommodations our guests stay in. We are not a rental company trying to fill rooms. We recommend what will fit our customer 's needs and budget. We are a family owned and operated company of golf enthusiasts where our customers are our first priority."

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