The legendary figure of Robert the Bruce brought his sword down to cut the ribbon to officially open Scotland’s newest golf course at Turnberry.
The resort’s newest golf course, named the King Robert the Bruce, was officially opened with a ceremony attended by a selection of VIP guests and members.
Formerly known as the Kintyre course, it has undergone a complete redesign with completely new holes.
The iconic Turnberry Lighthouse sits atop the ruins of the 13th century Turnberry Castle, thought to be the birthplace of King Robert the Bruce in 1274.
The course has been designed by world-renowned architect, Martin Ebert, who was also responsible for the highly acclaimed changes to the Championship Ailsa Course. The Ailsa officially reopened in June 2016 and has received rave reviews and the highest of accolades.
Eric Trump, Vice President of The Trump Organisation, said: “To know that the King of Scotland, Robert the Bruce, was born here at Turnberry Castle is something we’re incredibly proud of; therefore, it made sense to name this new course after a legendary Scottish Warrior.
“Turnberry itself boasts an incredibly rich history – from the birthplace of King Robert the Bruce, to the building of our iconic lighthouse by the family of famed author Robert Louis Stevenson, in addition to playing an integral role with the Royal Air Force in both World Wars, Trump Turnberry continues to uphold an iconic legacy. The resort has also played host to four unforgettable Open Championships, with winners Tom Watson, Nick Price, Stewart Cink and Greg Norman, and a series of other memorable tournaments, including the Women’s British Open and the Senior Open.
“There was no question that Martin Ebert was the right person to re-design the amazing King Robert the Bruce. Martin is an exceptional architect with tremendous vision. The final product will be a course which, similar to its famous counterpart, will sit among the ranks of the top courses anywhere in the world.”
Mr Trump says the course will provide visitors of Trump Turnberry with another exceptional golfing experience, complementing the iconic and newly transformed Ailsa Course, at one of the world’s most iconic golf destinations.
He told members and guests at the opening: “I want to thank all of the team, three years ago the hotel did not look like this, we started on a very big vision to return Turnberry to grandeur and as it would have been when it opened in 1906.
“What we have done here is really, really special, the vision is second to none, there is not a magazine front cover in golf that we haven’t been on. I could not be more proud. My father and I have dreamt about this and always wanted a course that could hold the best tournaments anywhere in the world. this new course is one of the best anywhere.
“I want to thank the greenkeepers led by Alan Paterson who have done such an incredible job. I also want to thank South Ayrshire Council. Every investment we wanted to make they were 100 per cent behind us - that’s not always the case - I want to thank them for being such great partners. three years ago we said we wanted to make Turnberry great again and I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished.”
Mr Trump added that his wife, Lara, was also present and was seven months pregnant - “he’s going to be a great golfer,” Mr Trump added.
Architect Martin Ebert said: “Once again, it’s been an honour for Mackenzie & Ebert to work alongside The Trump Organization to create what will certainly be one of the top courses in Scotland and the UK.
“The location of the links at Turnberry, right on such a tremendously rugged coastline, really elevates the playing experience for the golfer and heightens the challenges laid out in front of them.
“As well as creating some spectacular golf holes, we’ve also introduced an ecologically diverse wetland area between the 5th and 13th holes which will become a haven for wildlife as it matures. The wetland will also provide a beautiful visual feature as well as offering a strategic playing challenge for both holes.”
A series of key features are evident throughout the new course. The par 5 1st hole has a split fairway for the second shot divided by central bunkers, with fairway bunkers distinctive with marram grass eyebrows, which will contrast with the manicured perfection of the revetted greenside bunkers found throughout the course.
At the far end of King Robert the Bruce, atop Bain’s Hill, golfers will enjoy a stunning coastal stretch of holes, which provide extraordinary panoramic vistas of Turnberry, Ailsa Craig, Ayrshire, Arran, Mull of Kintyre and beyond. The approach shot to the 9th green is awe-inspiring with the green perched high above the waves crashing onto the rocky coastline.
Completely new golf holes have been created at the 8th and 11th holes, transforming them both into exceptional par 5s with an unforgettable backdrop out to sea. The 11th tee shot now has the famous Turnberry Lighthouse as its focus.
The 18th hole is also a par 5 with a well-protected green and approach. With its location beside the clubhouse, golfers enjoying the hospitality of the Duel in the Sun restaurant now have unrivalled views of this closing hole and will be able to appreciate the outstanding design as players take their final shots.