Trump Turnberry (King Robert the Bruce) - Ayrshire & Arran - Scotland

Trump Turnberry Resort,
Ayrshire,
KA26 9LT,
Scotland


  • +44 (0) 1655 334032

Golf has been played at Turnberry for well over a century now, starting when Lord Ailsa commissioned Willie Fernie, the professional at Troon, to lay out the first course for Girvan Golf Club in 1901. This 18-hole layout became the No.1 course when the No.2 arrived eight years later.

The No.1 course became known as the Ailsa between the two World Wars then the Arran appeared in 1954, shortly after Philip MacKenzie Ross rebuilt the war-ravaged Ailsa.

Almost half a century then elapsed before Martin Ebert, working at the time with Donald Steel, reworked part of the old Arran course to form the 18-hole Kintyre layout, with this new course opening at the start of the new millennium.

The acquisition of Turnberry by Donald Trump in July of 2014 would then propel golf at the resort to an altogether different level over the next three years and by far the smartest move the new owner made was appointing Martin Ebert to oversee the wholesale redesign of the golf operation.

The pitch & putt course in front of the hotel was recreated, the links academy and practice facility was refurbished, a new Cairngorms putting green was installed and the clubhouse was completely renovated before the Ailsa underwent an extensive upgrade.

The last piece of the jigsaw to fit into place was the relaunch of the former Kintyre track as the King Robert the Bruce course, named in honour of the man who, raised as a boy in Turnberry Castle (where the lighthouse now stands) at the end of the 13th century, became King of Scots in 1306.

Significant modifications were made by contractor SOL Golf to many of the holes – the burn on the 1st was removed, sandy waste areas were established on several holes, a large wetland area was created between the 5th and 13th, trees were toppled to the left of the 7th, and the home green was lowered in front of the clubhouse.

As if that wasn’t enough, all the bunkers were overhauled, with fairway traps given a rugged marram-fringed look and greenside sand hazards shaped as traditional revetted pots.

Four new holes were introduced on Bain’s Hill, largely reversing the routing of the holes that were once located there. The elimination of the short par four 8th down to the cove by the water’s edge will be a regret to some, while others will rejoice that this blind hole has been abolished.

The new par five 8th heads towards the lighthouse, playing to a green that sits above the 12th fairway on the Ailsa. The 9th then returns in the opposite direction and the approach shot requires a heroic carry across the old 8th greensite to a green perched high on the headland.

The par three 10th begins a back nine which is now configured with three par fives, three par fours and three par threes. Measuring between 142 yards and 166 yards, this short hole calls for an all-carry tee shot across a sandy waste area to a tricky little green on the other side of a gully.

The 11th hole (formerly a par four on the Kintyre but now lengthened to a par five) then heads down the side of the hill – on the same compass bearing as the 8th fairway but never interfering with it – to the flatter part of the property where the closing holes are located.

It’s never an easy proposition to play second fiddle to a course ranked near the summit of the World Top 100 but the new King Robert the Bruce course (opened in June 2017) does very well in its support role to a more illustrious sibling. Suffice to say, Trump Turnberry is now a 36-hole golf destination of real substance.

Trump Turnberry Resort is one of our Top 100 Golf Resorts of the World

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Reviews for Trump Turnberry (King Robert the Bruce)

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Description: The exhilarating King Robert the Bruce course at Trump Turnberry opened for play in 2017 after Martin Ebert returned to redesign the Kintrye course which the architect laid out in 2001. Rating: 6.6 out of 10 Reviews: 43
TaylorMade
Peter
The Kintyre is missing something, and I can't think what it is. Turnberry as a venue is world class in all aspects. The condition of the Kintyre is certainly as good as the Ailsa. The staff are always friendly and helpful (the starter was telling us that 34 new bunkers are being added to the Ailsa in time for the 2009 Open). Some genuinly great holes.I loved the 1st, 4th, and 18th. The 8th I could take or leave. The scenery is breathtaking, and I left with a huge smile on my face... but something is missing with this course. My only guess is the exceptional nature of the Ailsa could take the shine off the Kintyre.
October 18, 2005
8 / 10
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Jim McCann

Played on 2nd January 2003. Greens were as well presented then as most inland courses in the summer -- honestly! Interesting elevation around the turn at Bains Hill. Hard to concentrate over the last six holes without casting occasional envious glances towards the closing holes on the Ailsa next door but at least the 18th on the Kintyre is a far better closing hole that that on the Ailsa.

What a double day out it would be to play both; golfing nirvana. And even if you do only play this course, you still get all the clubhouse benefits available to golfers playing either 18 holes -- and that is a real experience not to be missed.

The Tappie Toorie lounge upstairs overlooking the courses is a lot more informal than you will find at other so called top clubhouses. And take time to look around the walls on the balcony upstairs to examine the golfing pedigree of the place. Turnberry is without doubt one of the top golfing destinations in Scotland.

Jim McCann

January 21, 2005
6 / 10
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Jim Robertson
Maturing nicely is the Kintyre. Early holes are fairly tight and gorse-lined; the dog-leg 7th is rather out of place then the signature 8th divides golfers. Love it or loathe it you'll never forget it! The back nine bears a resemblance to the back nine on the Ailsa and the last is a particular challenge. Not as memorable as the Ailsa (naturally) but an interesting and demanding course.
November 21, 2004
8 / 10
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Stu
July 27, 2011
totally agree about the 7th. An excellent course however