March 11, 2013

Bucket List Trip–Golf In Scotland Part 3

For anyone thinking of taking a trip to Scotland in 2013, Kevin McGrath and Taba Dale of Scottsdale Collection ( have two very special Tours to offer. Kevin McGrath, the writer of this “blog”, is a native of Ireland and has been arranging golf trips to Great Britain and Ireland for US golfers for more than 12 years. Most of these trips are customised and tailored to the needs and desires of the client. Both Taba and he live in Ireland near Lahinch for the summer months of May through October and in Scottsdale Arizona for the remainder of the year. You can review many testimonials from their clients on the above website.

As Global Ambassadors for the University of St. Andrews, Kevin and Taba are promoting a most unique and once-in-a-lifetime golf event in St. Andrews in June 2013 to celebrate the 600th Anniversary of the founding of the University, making it one of the oldest in the world. As most golfers will be well aware, the Old Course in St. Andrews has been closed for play on Sundays for centuries (- with the exception of the Open Championship and Dunhill Links events).

However, on Sunday June 23rd in 2013, 160 privileged amateur golfers will have the opportunity to walk the hallowed fairways when competing in the St. Andrews Golf 600 event over the three days of June 21, 22 and 23. Not only that, but the participants will have the full use of the iconic R&A Clubhouse that sits behind the 1st Tee and 18th green for the day. This very special 54H event over the three courses of Kingsbarns, Dukes Course and Old Course is open to the first 160 golfers willing to donate a minimum of US$10,000 to the University’s 600 Fundraising Initiative to offer scholarships to underprivileged students, create a Chair in American Literature and build a world-class museum quality Centre for Golf Research for the Special Collections Library.

Donations from US golfers will be to the University’s American Foundation, an approved 501(c)(3) entity. The format of the event is based on 40 teams of 4 golfers, with individual entries being paired up with others to form a team. With the leaders going out last on the final day, you could be following in the footsteps of Jones, Snead, Nicklaus, Ballesteros, Faldo and Woods by walking up the 18th fairway with a one or two shot lead for victory! Scottsdale Collection has also created a special 5-star tour around the event to Aberdeen to play the new Trump Scotland course, Cruden Bay and Royal Aberdeen and then play Carnoustie on the way down to St. Andrews. Please see attached for information on the St. Andrews Golf 600 event and also the Golf 600 Tour to Scotland.

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For those not wishing to spend US$10,000+ on a golf trip to Scotland, Scottsdale Collection are also offering their annual Tour to Scotland in mid to late July 2013. This tour starts just after the Open Championship, which this year will be played at Muirfield near Edinburgh, and will take in a few days in St. Andrews for games on Kingsbarns, Carnoustie and Old Course (- through the Daily Ballot), before heading up to Aberdeen to play Cruden Bay, Royal Aberdeen and Trump Scotland and then finishing up with games on Royal Dornoch and Castle Stuart. Please see the attached brochure or log on to to get full itinerary and cost details.

6. As with most golf tours “across the pond”, golfers will want to play the best courses and these have fixed visitor green fees. With air and ground transportation also reasonably fixed, the only real variable is with the accommodations and golfers can choose to stay in anything from local B&B’s to 5-star Hotels. As such, it is important to select accommodations to tie in with your travel budget. Obviously, the number of days/nights you spend in the country will also impact the budget accordingly.

7. Finally, if you are going to use a tour operator or travel consultant to plan your trip, I strongly suggest that you work with a well-referred “local” one that knows the lie of the land. I cannot tell you the number of golf visitors I have met over the past 12+ years that booked a golf trip through their “neighbourhood travel agent” that resulted in them criss-crossing the country with difficult transfers and missing out playing the best courses in whatever region they were visiting.

If is something that excites you and you are ready to make this trip of a lifetime, fill in your name and phone number below and Kevin McGrath will contact you to begin planning your dream golfing vacation.

Mr. McGrath is a member of Portmarnock and Lahinch Golf Clubs in Ireland, two courses ranked in the Top 100 Courses in the World, and also Troon Country Club in Scottsdale. He is a member of Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Rating Panel, an elite group of passionate golfers consisting of course architects, historians, leading professionals, and well-traveled golf enthusiasts. His involvement in the golf industry over the past 13 years has allowed him to connect and network with many of the top industry personnel, and this, coupled with other relationships developed over four decades, gives him access to key golf industry leaders.




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