|"I urge you to make this book your travel companion. It is comprehensive, thoughtful, and, in literal truth, invaluable."James W. Finegan, author of Where Golf is Great, Blasted Heaths and Blessed Greens, and many more|
Golf in Scotland: A Travel-Planning Guide with Profiles of 74 Great Courses
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Testimonials from golf's top contemporary writers
Highlights of Golf in Scotland: A Travel-Planning Guide . . . .
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Rave Reviews of Golf in Scotland from Golf's Top Contemporary Writers
"If getting your money's worth in everything from rental cars to green fees is a prime consideration in putting together a Scotland golf trip, I urge you to make this book your companion. It is comprehensive, thoughtful, and, in literal truth, invaluable."James W. Finegan, author of Where Golf is Great, Blasted Heaths and Blessed Greens, and many more
"Allan Ferguson has paved the way . . . . Take an iron or two out of your bag and carry this book instead."Michael Bamberger, Sports Illustrated; author of To the Linksland
" Golf in Scotland is an excellent guide to the Scottish links, their inns, and many other amenities of the Scottish game."Michael Murphy, author of Golf in the Kingdom and The Kingdom of Shivas Irons
"Allan Ferguson has written such an extraordinarily useful guide to golf in Scotland that I wish he would tackle other areas too: plumbing, tax planning, car repair, holiday decorating, anything."David Owen, author of My Usual Game
"If you're inclined to travel to . . . Scottish courses, your best guide is Allan McAllister Ferguson's Golf in Scotland."Lorne Rubenstein, Toronto Globe and Mail, author of A Season in Dornoch
"Laced with history and local lore as well as the nitty-gritty of modern golf travel, Golf in Scotland may prove an indispensable guide for the wise golf traveler."James Dodson, author of The Dewsweepers, Final Rounds, and A Golfer's Life
|"Allow us to get in line to sing your praises. We stumbled upon your book as we started to plan a golf trip to Scotland . . . . We easily saved over $2,000 eachDavid Heim, Chesapeake VA and Tim Hogan, Orlando FL|
Highlights/Contents/Excerpts/How to Order/Media and Buyer Info/Updates
Allan Ferguson's indispensable guide to golf in Scotland
of Golf in Scotland: A Travel-Planning Guide with Profiles of 74 Great Courses
When to go
Where to go
Thirteen itinerariessix under $2,000.
How to bargain with tour operators
Eight ways to get a tee time on the Old Course at St. Andrews
The best places to stay
The best-value car rental agency priced 20-30% below the brand names
Over 200 websites for trip planning
Complete contact information and extensive descriptions of seventy-four great Scottish courses
Table of Contents
Prologue - AVOID THE TOURS!
|PART I - THE BIG PICTURE|
|Chapter 1 - FAQs and How to Use This Book Most Effectively|
|Chapter 2 - Overview of Key Issues and Decisions|
|Chapter 3 - When to Go|
|Chapter 4 - Where to Go|
|PART II - THE NITTY-GRITTY|
|Chapter 1 - The Four Elements of a Golf Trip: Air Travel, Vehicle Rental, Tee Times, Lodging|
|Chapter 2 - St. Andrews Up Close: Everyone Wants to Goand Why Not!|
|Chapter 3 - A Potpourri of Useful Information|
PART III - THE DIRECTORY OF COURSES - 74 courses fully profiled
APPENDICES - Frequently-Called Phone Numbers, Golf Readiness Checklist, Useful Internet Sites, Daylight Hours, Bibliography
***Excerpts from Golf in Scotland by Allan Ferguson***
opinionated - quotable - entertaining - honest - literate - informative - fun
On Golf Travel
"Many intelligent people end up buying overpriced golf trips to Scotland. They simply give up and turn their travel decisions over to an expert. I want to change that situation. I want to make you the expert."
"Apart from the dollars-and-cents side of travel, there's something more importantand that's what you gain from the process of creating a trip. It's like foreplay. . . . Getting there is half the fun."
"This is probably the single most important piece of advice I can give: Don't hurry. Savor the clubhouse (the golf equivalent of 'smelling the roses')."
"The more money you spend on accommodations the more you separate yourself from the ordinary people, the customs, and the heart and soul of Scotland (or, for that matter, any other place)."
"Tour operators and their compliant allies in Scotland already have turned some of the finest golf courses in the world into ghettos for the richoverpriced, overplayed, and now off-limits to most visitors (including Scots) of average income . . . . The more expensive Scottish golf becomes, the more it turns away people who love golf but who do not have a lot of money. That, in short, is the budding tragedy of Scottish golf."
"Maybe it was the persistent sixty-mile-an-hour gale blowing off the North Sea when I played Gullane #1, but, to my mind, this is the least enjoyable, most overbearing, and most overrated of Scotland's marquee courses."
"Machrihanish. Mock-ri-hon-ish. The syllables roll off the tongue, conjuring visions of Celtic clans, pipers, and warrior kings in some mythical medieval kingdom."
(More on Machrihanish) "Out on the golf course you encounter 'Balaclava' (#6), 'Bruach Mor' (#7), 'Gigha' (#8), 'Ranachan' (#9), 'Nocmoy' (#10) and 'Kilvian' (#13)-and, at this point, you're likely to wonder, 'Where am I? And what language is this anyway?'."
"Sitting atop the great bluff overlooking the linksland, with its red russet roof and white facade, the Turnberry Hotel looks as if it might have been transferred wholesale from colonial Americamaybe George Washington's Mt. Vernon on steroids."
(More on Turnberry) "Now what do you think about forking over the money for Turnberry? It's not an easy decision, but remember that classic bumper sticker: 'We're not extravagant. We're just spending our kids' inheritance.'"
"Traveling to St. Andrews carries with it an undeniable sense of drama. I think of it as a modern-day pilgrimage to Shangri-La or Oz . . . . It's everything one hopes for and maybe a little more."
(On parking in St. Andrews) "First, take whatever advice and help your lodging host can provide. Second, take whatever space you can find and be glad you got it. Third, before getting into your car, think about the possibility of walking."
"If your travel agent says, 'I have your ticket to Glasgow and you only have to wait one hour and thirty minutes to connect in London,' your reply should be, 'Go back to the drawing board and give me three hours to make that connecting flight'."
(On golf carts) "In Scotland, golf is still considered a walking gamea game encouraging quiet conversation with companions while taking a healthful stroll through natural terrain. I am not romanticizing anything here. This is the hallmark of golf in Scotland."
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Title: Golf in Scotland: A Travel-Planning Guide with Profiles
of 74 Great Courses
Publication Date: March 15, 2012
Publisher: WFPublishing, 1743 S. Marion St., Denver CO 80210, ph 1-800-835-6692
Retail price: $24.95 USD
Wholesale Purchasing: Call for information
Synopsis: Seven chapters offer advice on when to go, where
to go, lodging, tee times, and other travel decisions. Designed to help travelers
save money and plan their own golf-centered trips to Scotland. Extensive descriptions
of sieventy-four Scottish courses feature complete contact information. Appendices
include a golf-readiness checklist, useful websites, and a bibliography for
further reading. Indexed.
The Author: Allan McAllister Ferguson helps golfers and their companions make affordable trips to Scotland and Ireland through his business, Ferguson Golf. He makes frequent trips to conduct research and refresh his contacts. He was born in Decatur, Illinois, in 1944. He is semi-retired from careers in politics, library science, and business. During the 1980s he and his wife, Ruth Wimmer, changed the look of commercial baby toys with their line of black and white infant development products, still sold under the trade name, "Wimmer-Ferguson Child Products."
Updates to the 2009-10 edition of Golf in Scotland: A Travel-Planning Guide with Profiles of 68 Great Courses.
Current to August 2011 (holders of the 2009-10 edition, please consider purchasing the new 4th edition update in 2012)
pp 20-24 - The Scottish Golf Classics are almost entirely a dead letter. The only one remaining is the Ayrshire event and that's on life support. The Carnoustie Country Classic has continued to do reasonably well, though attendance was off fifty percent in 2009-we hope due only to international economic recession.
p. 41 - It is no longer necessary to book both courses at Troon. See below (p. 238) for more detail.
p. 65 - The Inn on North Street is now Ogstons on North Street (www.Ogstonsonnorthst.com)
P. 67 - Jennifer Sibbald has retired and is no longer in business.
p. 71 - Apply for canceled dates. On the first Wednesday in January 2010 the Links Trust accepted a second round of applications for advance reservations on the Old Course to distribute times that were not taken up in the first round of applications accepted in September 2009. The same routine can be expected for the forseeable future.
p. 81 - Globespan declared bankruptcy in 2009.
pp. 84-85 - 1Car1 went into "receivership" (bankruptcy) and Woods closed its Scottish operation in 2009.
p. 88 - The Arnold Clark company is no longer supplying VW Caravelle minibuses. They are supplying Mercedes Vito minibuses-a "nine-seater" (somewhat larger than the Caravelle).
p. 99 - Do I have to stay at the Turnberry Hotel to play the Ailsa course? The answer is still "no," but tee time policies and prices have changed significantly at Turnberry. See below (p. 257) for more detail.
p. 110 - St. Andrews Laundry Service is now Careform Laundry Service at same address.
p. 111 - All 15% references to the VAT should read 20%. The 15% rate was a temporary palliative to economic recession.
pp. 135-36 - Prices at most courses are little changed. The most significant price changes have been at Royal Troon (now £175) and Turnberry (various, as low as £95 for a "sunset" tee time). On page 136, the note at the bottom regarding Troon's old two-course policy no longer applies.
p. 149 - Il Padrino is no longer; it has been replaced by an Indian restaurant.
p. 153 - Sorry to report, Belmonte Ristorante closed in 2010.
p. 158 - Administrator - Rosemary Pittendrigh has retired and has been replaced by Robbie Stewart. The head professional at Cruden Bay is now Neil Murray
p. 160 - James and Shona Mutch no longer run the Kilmarnock Arms. New owners are Martin and Lucy Taylor. The website indicated is incorrect; the correct URL is www.kilmarnockarms.com.
p. 162 - Duff House Royal: The corrected postal code is AB45 35X. A new secretary is James Cameron. The club requests a deposit only for groups of twelve or more.
p. 175 - Corrected web site is www.golspie-golf-club.co.uk
p. 178 - Greywalls Hotel is once again taking individual reservations from the public and has a limited number of tee times on Muirfield to sell as a package.
p. 185 - Sidebar at top right: Made in Scotland is now the House of Beauly.
p. 199 - Brian and Bronwyn Birrell at Sandilands B & B at Lundin Links (Largo) are no longer in business.
p. 201 - A phone number for The Machrie Hotel was inadvertently omitted. It is 01496-302-310. Currently the hotel is serving as golf clubhouse. It is no longer serving as a hotel.
p. 206 - David Baxter is officially out of the b & b business at Machrihanish.
p. 209 - The new administrator at Montrose is Andy Carcary.
p. 212 - Carol O'Neill is the new booking secretary at Murcar.
p. 214 - Jim Gibson has replaced David Corstorphine at Nairn.
p. 215 - The Claymore House Hotel is now The Clubhouse (www.clubhouse.co.uk), 01667-453-321.
p. 216 - Martyn Huish has replaced is father, David Huish, as the head professional at North Berwick West Links.
p. 219 - The Belhaven Hotel was sold in 2010 and closed its doors as a guest house in Octobera big loss for North Berwick and for golfers on a value budget.
p. 227 - Prestwick visitor policies: The club has added a few more times on both Saturday and Sunday. Always worth checking for weekend play.
p. 233 - John Duncan has retired as secretary and has been replaced by Neil Hampton. A day ticket for two rounds on the championship course is now available for £130 weekday and £140 weekend.
p. 235 - The Royal Golf Hotel at Dornoch re-opened in April 2010 after being closed since 2007. Expect to pay in the range of £85-95 per person high season double occupancy..
p. 238-239 - Shortly after this book went to press in February 2009, Royal Troon announced the most significant policy change in Scottish golf. Not only did they do away with their long-standing two-course policy (required payment for both the Old and the Portland), they created greater flexibility by making all choices optional-Old, Portland, and lunch. A round on the Old is now £175 rather than the previously required £220. Formal lunch is optional at about £20. Informal lunch in the bar is priced off the menu. Later in 2009 they took another step toward luring visitors back: for the same price of £165 the Portland is now offered at no cost whatsoever. The management committee is to be congratulated for their good sense.
p. 241 - Thorncroft House is no longer offering b & b.
p. 254 - Morag Duncan has replaced Mr Donald as secretary at Stonehaven Golf Club.
p. 257 - Turnberry was bought in 2008 by Dubai World and underwent extensive refurbishment in 2009 prior to hosting the Open Championship. The new director of golf is Chris Card. The head professional is Richard Hall. Traditionally, non-resident golfers could book at Turnberry only two weeks prior to intended date of play for a high-season fee of £190. In late 2009, perhaps to address cash-flow problems, the hotel announced an attractive new set of green fee policies for non-residents. "Sunset" tee times after 3 p.m. now can be booked for £95 (!) anytime on a prepaid basis. The regular non-resident rate of £190 continues to apply to bookings prior to 3 p.m., bookable two weeks prior to play. It's always best to check for current policies at Turnberry.
A note to readers: If you have additional corrections and/or new information, please contact me at email@example.com.
Golf in Scotland
Allan Ferguson's indispensable guide for the savvy traveler
Ferguson Golf 800-835-6692 firstname.lastname@example.org
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