(Killeen Castle, Ireland 24th November 2009) – The 2010 AIB Ladies Irish Open, supported by Fáilte Ireland, will take place on 6th- 8th August at Killeen Castle on the Jack Nicklaus Signature designed course, that will also host The 2011 Solheim Cup.It is anticipated that the move to August in the week immediately following the Ricoh Women’s British Open, will attract some of the biggest names in ladies golf, not only on the Ladies European Tour but also on an international level as it is presently a free week on the LPGA calendar. In addition to one of the biggest purses in Europe of €500,000 on offer, it will also provide Solheim Cup contenders from both teams the unique opportunity to play the highly acclaimed Jack Nicklaus Signature course competitively a year before The 2011 Solheim Cup. It is unlikely that the event will be played at Killeen Castle in 2011 on the same dates due to the proximity of the Matches, scheduled for September 23-25, 2011.Quote from AIB"We are delighted that the 2010 AIB Ladies Irish Open will be played at the magnificent Killeen Castle in Co. Meath. This is an important part of the build up to 2011 when The Solheim Cup, the largest women’s golf team event in the world, comes to Ireland. It will also be hosted at Killeen Castle, which we expect will have a very positive economic impact on the surrounding communities, in both the short term and long term. This is very much in accord with our sponsorship focus on local communities and we have no doubt that the people of County Meath will get fully behind the tournament in preparation for the major event in 2011" said Billy Andrews, General Manager, AIB.Quote from FI“Fáilte Ireland is delighted to be supporting the 2010 AIB Ladies Irish Open which will present a great opportunity to showcase our golfing product on a world stage and will, once again, place Ireland in the international spotlight. It also takes us another step closer to hosting The 2011 Solheim Cup, where we will promote Irish golf tourism to a new global audience.“Golf is one of Ireland’s greatest tourist attractions, contributing an estimated €160 million to the economy. Importantly, when golfers come to Ireland, many also take part in other activities, which provides the opportunity to promote Ireland, not only as a golfing destination but also as a holiday destination of choice. We were overwhelmed by the response in the USA from the 120,000 spectators who attended The 2009 Solheim Cup in Chicago, many of whom expressed interest in visiting Ireland for the event in 2011” said Keith McCormack, Head of Golf & Sports Tourism at Fáilte Ireland.Quote from Killeen Castle“We are very proud to be hosting our first big International tournament; the AIB Ladies Irish Open in 2010 just two years after the course is open. It will be a perfect curtain raiser for The Solheim Cup in 2011. Killeen Castle and its members will welcome with open arms the best lady players in the world over the next two years for the AIB Ladies Irish Open and The 2011 Solheim Cup,” said Barry O’Connor, General Manager of Killeen Castle. “The Signature course which represents the latest in the Nicklaus design philosophy is one of the finest stadium venues anywhere in the world. The 600 acre estate has the added attraction of having a Dave Pelz Short Game School on site, fishing lakes and the magnificent 800 year old Killeen Castle as a backdrop to many fine holes on the course”.About the AIB Ladies Irish Open, supported by Fáilte IrelandThe AIB Ladies Irish Open has quickly become a favourite of the players on the Ladies European Tour, attracting some of the best players in the world including; Sophie Gustafson, Suzann Petersen, winner in 2008, Morgan Pressel, Maria Hjorth and Laura Davies. In 2009 Italy’s Diana Luna claimed the title which took place at the Bernhard Langer designed Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links for the second successive year following the successful re-birth of the championship on the Ladies European Tour schedule. For more information visit; www.aibladiesirishopen.comAbout Killeen CastleKilleen Castle, the ancestral home of the Earls of Fingal, sits in a wooded estate in 600 acres in Dunsany, Co. Meath. Set in the historic grounds of one of Ireland’s oldest and finest 12th century Norman castles, the estate at Killeen Castle is home to a unique development of supreme quality residences discreetly positioned among the natural woodlands of the demesne and throughout which the magnificent Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course winds. Jack Nicklaus, course designer at Killeen Castle, said: “As the course designer, I am proud to be part of what is happening at Killeen Castle. It is phenomenal, what with the castle as a focal point. You have wonderful facilities to stage The Solheim Cup or the Ryder Cup in the future. It is a very strong course and will be perfectly matured for 2011.”Located in the heart of Royal Meath overlooked by the ancient Hill of Tara, Killeen Castle is just minutes from the picturesque hamlet of Dunsany. Killeen Castle offers all the joys of true country living, yet it is only 35 minutes from Dublin International Airport and 45 minutes from Dublin city centre. The golfing facilities are augmented by a 30,000 sq ft stand alone modern purpose built clubhouse, with parking facilities in an old wall garden setting for 260 cars. In the context of holding The 2011 Solheim Cup, the venue provides ample room (600 acres) for public village and hospitality facilities, a television compound, grandstands and spectator traffic flow, all adjacent to the dramatic 18th hole. Killeen Castle is soon to be complemented by a luxury hotel and spa. For more information, visit the club’s website, www.killeencastle.com.Media contacts:   Ann Marie Dalton, Twenty Eleven, +353 87 9012925, am@twentyeleven.ie>Roddy Carr, Director, Killeen Castle, Tel: +353. 086. 0401111, roddycarr@killeencastle.comBethan Cutler, LET, +44(0)7980056045, bcutler@ladieseuropeantour.comFor further information visit:www.aibladiesirishopen.comwww.solheimcup.com