Just got back from playing the Machrie this weekend. Whilst the changes are not yet completed (only 14 holes open, required to play off matts from fairway, no proshop and no scorecard!), despite this it is still worthy of a 6 ball rating. If the last 4 holes are anything like as good as the first 14 the Machrie is going to rapidly ascend the rankings when completed.
This was my first time playing the course, but judging by some of the previous reviews it would seem like they are certainly an improvement, for example previous reviews describe the 3rd as a poor par 4, whereas now it is a good par 3 along the beach. I would say there is now no weak holes. The drive on the first is fairly uninspiring, but the approach slightly blind to a green set into the dunes is a glimpse of what is to come. The second a par 5 with a dogleg around a burn which runs the whole length of the hole is a real risk reward hole. And the course only gets better, the stretch from the 4th to the 9th is reminiscent of Royal St Georges. Another good par 5 (I think, no card meant not sure, but seemed about 500 yards off the back tee) at the 10th with another burn in play for the drive is followed by a narrow drivable par 4. The course we played finished with the 14th, which was the pick of the par 3s.
Whilst the course is not particularly difficult, I have to say it really was one of the most enjoyable courses I have played for some time (I enjoyed the course as much as I enjoyed the Brandon courses). There are no bunkers on the course and there is also no need for any. Quite a few of the fairways are wide, but that does not take away any of the interest. The course was also in good nick, which made the requirement to play off matts slightly annoying. Highly recommended, especially if you like whiskey!
Date: May 15, 2016