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Golfing in Edinburgh

Published: 02/09/2014 - Filed under: Home » Archive » 2014 » September 2014 » LifeStyles »

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GULLANE

WHERE IS IT? 20 miles east of the city.

 WHAT’S IT LIKE? Three great courses make Gullane one of the most visitor-friendly clubs in the area. No. 1 has seen continuous play since 1884, and regularly hosts the Open qualifying and Amateur Championships. Hilly terrain and the prevailing west wind make the 6,548-yard links feel much longer, with the seventh tee affording fabulous views over the Firth of Forth and Muirfield just along the coast. No. 2 is almost as long and just as difficult, while No. 3 is shorter but tighter. Traditional links golf just about at its finest.

CONTACT Gullane Golf Club, Gullane; tel +44 (0)1620 842 255; gullanegolfclub.com

PRICENo. 1, weekday £98 ($167), weekend £113 ($193); No. 2, weekday £49 ($84), weekend £54 ($92); No. 3, weekday £33 ($56), weekend £39 ($67). Winter about half price. Carts £30 ($51), caddies £40 ($68), trolleys £5 ($8.50).

CLUB RENTAL Taylor Made, £27 ($46).

CLUB HOURS No. 1 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM, 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM; No. 2 and No. 3 8:00 AM till late. 

MINIMUM HANDICAP No. 1 24 for men, 30 for ladies; none on No. 2 and 3.

FACILITIES Three 18-hole courses: No. 1 par-71, 6,548 yds; No. 2 par-71, 6,385 yds; No. 3 par-68, 5,259 yds. Good driving and short game practice area.

AFTER THE GOLF Open 8:00 AM – 9:00 PM, the friendly visitors’ clubhouse serves standard bar food. Players on No. 1 can use the more traditional members’ clubhouse.


BRAID HILLS

WHERE IS IT? Three miles south of the city center.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? Founded in 1893, the blue-collar Edinburgh Leisure course is a keenly priced gem. Admittedly short, with only three par-fives and several driveable par-fours, it crisscrosses seriously wild, hilly terrain, and despite being only a ten-minute drive from Edinburgh castle, feels more like the Highlands. With majestic views of Arthur’s Seat and the Firth of Forth beyond, the course is defended by steeply sloping fairways, penal gorse and the wind. 

CONTACT Braid Hills Approach, Edinburgh; tel +44 (0)131 447 6666; edinburghleisure.co.uk/venues/braid-hills-golf-course

PRICE Weekdays £23 ($39), weekends £25 ($43). No carts or caddies.

CLUB RENTAL Various brands, £18 ($30). Trolley £4.50 ($7.70).

CLUB HOURS Weekend 6:30 AM – 8:00 PM, weekdays 7:00 AM – 8:00 PM.

MINIMUM HANDICAP None.

FACILITIES A 5,858-yd, par-71, 18-hole course, plus the par-33, nine-hole Wee Braids playing 2,149 yds. No practice amenities but Braid Hills Golf Centre next door has a driving range and short game area, plus an American Golf shop.

AFTER THE GOLF The likes of bacon rolls can be organized ahead, otherwise the basic clubhouse has no catering facilities. The Golf Centre coffee shop, open 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM, has excellent food and drink.

 

MUIRFIELD

WHERE IS IT? 21 miles east along the East Lothian coast.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? The host of 16 Opens, including the 2013 Championship, Muirfield is reckoned by Jack Nicklaus to be the best course in Britain. The 1891 Old Tom Morris layout was redesigned by Harry Colt, and has since been re-modeled to combat recent equipment changes. Driving is relatively straightforward, with all the trouble on the approach shots – the pot bunkers are severe, and greens, like the standout par three 13th, wicked in their subtlety. This is a classic links, so when the wind blows and the rough is up, low and straight beats high and crooked every time.

CONTACT Duncur Road, Muirfield; tel +44 (0)1620 842 123; muirfield.org.uk

PRICE £200 ($342) for one round, £260 ($444) for two rounds on the day. £110 ($188) from mid-November to mid-March. Caddies are £40 ($68) and can be booked a day ahead. Trolleys £5 ($8.50); golf carts £35 ($60).

CLUB HIRE Not available.

CLUB HOURS Visitors play on Tuesdays and Thursdays (only if they are a member’s guest on other days). First tee 8:30 AM, last 9:50 AM, with a second round playable after lunch.

MINIMUM HANDICAP 18; certificates may be requested.

FACILITIES The par 71 links plays 7,245yds. There’s a full practice area but no pro shop.

AFTER THE GOLF The classic clubhouse offers a traditional British luncheon – think roasts and treacle pudding. The bar closes at 7:00 PM. After 10:00 AM, a jacket and tie must be worn in the lounge and dining room.


NORTH BERWICK

WHERE IS IT? 24 miles east of the city.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? Regularly used for Open qualifiers, golf has been played on this venerable turf for more than 200 years – many believe it to be one of Scotland’s finest traditional links. With a wall running just in front of the skinny 13th green, and a deep swale right across the middle of the 16th green, the course has its quirks, but at its best – as on the heavily contoured signature par three 15th – this is a magnificent test of golf. The pot bunkers are small and deep, the rough in high summer, punitive. The wind makes a two-iron more useful than a five-wood.

CONTACT New Club House, Beach Road, North Berwick; tel +44 (0)1620 892 135; northberwickgolfclub.com 

PRICE Weekdays £90 ($154), weekends £95 ($162); winter £65 ($110). Caddies £40 ($68).

CLUB RENTAL Taylor Made and Titleist, £25 ($43).

CLUB HOURS Mon-Fri 10:00 AM to last tee-off at 4:00 PM. Weekends after 12:30 PM.

MINIMUM HANDICAP Men 28, ladies 36. Certificate may be requested.

FACILITIES The 18-hole par-71 links measures 6,464 yards. Practice green but no long game facilities.

AFTER THE GOLF The welcoming clubhouse, open from 8:30 AM to mid-evening, classes visitors as members for the day. Non-playing partners are welcome to join along. Dining can be informal or fine, with the accent on traditional Scottish fare. 



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