Friday, September 30, 2011

Scottish golf strengthens Global presence

In a move designed to bolster international awareness of golf in Scotland, two trade organisations for the golf tourism industry have agreed to a new, collaborative working relationship. The pioneering partnership between Golf Tourism Scotland (GTS) and the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) will assist the Home of Golf in adopting a more pro-active approach to promotion worldwide.

Commenting on the announcement, Lee Derrick, chairman of GTS, said the agreement was the beginning of a new era. “In an increasing competitive market with many fantastic golf courses and resorts to choose from, Scotland more than ever needs to ensure it is seen around the world as a desirable destination where golfers of all levels can play exceptional golf and enjoy a warm welcome. This announcement with IAGTO confirms our new attitude to promoting Scottish golf tourism around the world.”

The new relationship between GTS and IAGTO will create various initiatives, collaborations and opportunities to help drive golf tourism to Scotland and achieve sustainable growth across the country’s many regional golf destinations.

“The golf product in Scotland is exceptional but with greater choice from an ever-growing pool of golf destinations, Scotland must develop even stronger relationships with international golf tour operators and opinion formers if it is to generate sustainable growth in golf tourism,” said Peter Walton, president and CEO of IAGTO. “Our relationship with GTS will ensure that Scotland’s key messages are delivered with even greater clarity to both established and emerging markets, and will help all of Scotland’s many golf destinations adapt effectively to the evolving demands of the golf traveller.”

IAGTO has a number of overseas representatives covering new and time-honoured markets such as USA, Ireland, France, Spain, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and South Africa. The association is therefore well placed to support GTS particularly with familiarisation and press trips. A more immediate upshot of the new partnership is an introductory offer for GTS members to join IAGTO at a discounted rate of up to 72%.


Two New Luxury Hotels, An Enhanced Top-100 Course – And a Pre-Booking Offer Too Good to Miss

Greetings to all our Tour Operator Friends!

Argyll, Scotland - In our 2012 Tour Operator Guide (click here to download PDF), you'll find lots of exciting news about The Village at Machrihanish Dunes, along with everything you will need to book your clients in with us for an unforgettable experience in 2012 at the quintessential Scottish links golf resort. Here are some of the highlights of what you’ll find in our 2012 Tour Operator Guide:

In early 2012, we’ll add two newly-restored historic hotels to our accommodation offerings with the 23-room Ugadale Hotel in Machrihanish overlooking the first tee at neighboring Machrihanish Golf Club and the 22-room Royal Hotel on Campbeltown Harbour in Campbeltown. Along with our award-winning Ugadale Cottages, they’ll provide lodging that’s second to none for luxury and convenience.
The 2012 Tour Operator Guide has everything you need to know about our new hotels and dining options. Meanwhile, the slide show below will give you a sneak peek at what these grand hotels once looked like, look like today during restoration and what they will look like upon completion.


Pre-book 2012 groups before October 15, 2011 and your clients will receive four nights for the price of three, plus two rounds of golf for the price of one (a round on Machrihanish Dunes and the other at famed Machrihanish Golf Club next door).

2012 RATES

In the attached 2012 Tour Operator Guide, you’ll also find all of our rates for guest rooms, golf cottages and golf for 2012. Don’t forget that we offer a 30% commission on rooms and green fees to all our tour operator partners.


The Machrihanish Dunes golf course, a Top-100 U.K. course which was labeled “the world’s next great golf experience” and a "future classic" is constantly being enhanced. Over the past 6 months, we’ve moved and softened some greens, eliminated acres of primary rough, and shortened walking paths between holes considerably. The course is more playable than ever – and as dramatic and thrilling as any course on Earth.


Please welcome Janette Jansson, the new General Manager at Machrihanish Dunes, and Stacy Keys, who will be your on-property Tour Operator liaison. Stacy will answer any questions you have and work with you to ensure that every visit by your clients is a thoroughly enjoyable one. Stacy can be reached via email at or by phone at +44 (0)1586 810013.

Please download the 2012 Tour Operator Guide for much more – including photos, renderings, room descriptions and other info on our new hotels like a look at our new restaurants and pubs, sample itineraries and lots of other information you’ll want to keep handy. Make sure to save it for future reference!

Thank you for your interest in The Village at Machrihanish Dunes. We look forward to welcoming you - and your clients - soon!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

New Contact Details for GTS

Scottish Tourism Forum have recently moved from Edinburgh to Stirling so all correspondence for Golf Tourism Scotland should be directed accordingly to the new address below

Elaine Townsend
Admin Office
Golf Tourism Scotland,
Old Town Jail,
St John Street,
t: 01786 459224
f: 01786 451037

Company Registered in Scotland No. SC285639

Friday, September 9, 2011

Old Course Bookings Boost Scottish golf tourism

Visiting golfers’ desire to play the famous Old Course at St Andrews Links shows no sign of abating as applications for the 2012 season flooded in yesterday (Wed).

More than 1800 applications were received by St Andrews Links Trust, which manages the seven courses at the Home of Golf, after the process opened at 10am - an increase on the previous record of 1500 applications set for 2011.

The Old Course is renowned around the world as the place where golf was first played and has hosted 28 Open Championships, more than any other venue, with the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Seve Ballesteros and Tiger Woods in its gallery of champions.

The Old Course along with The Castle, New and Jubilee courses has been ranked in the prestigious Golf Digest Top 100 Courses ranking. Each year tens of thousands of golfers travel from around the world to play the famous St Andrews Links courses and experience its rich 600 year heritage.

Golfers are invited to apply online directly to the Trust for Old Course tee times each September for the following year. Although demand exceeds the number of times available, there is a ballot or lottery system in operation, which will run from 48 hours ahead from January 7, 2012, and tee times can be booked on the other Links courses.

Euan Loudon, Chief Executive of St Andrews Links Trust, said, “We are very encouraged to receive such a high number of tee time applications. Normally in the second year after the Open Championship we would expect to see a fall in applications, but this year has seen record numbers apply. These are still challenging times in terms of the economy so it is important for Scottish golf tourism that we continue to see high numbers of visiting golfers choosing to come here to play. We hope they will enjoy an outstanding experience playing the Old and the other Links courses, learning in the golf academy and relaxing in our clubhouses and shops.”

The tee time applications will be processed in the coming weeks and golfers will be notified directly if their applications have been successful.