PERPETUAL AILSA CRAIG
A volcanic island half a billion years old, Ailsa Craig has borne witness to countless events throughout history and prehistory from its station in the Firth of Clyde. Once a haven for Roman Catholics during the 15th century Scottish Reformation, the island was quarried for its rare stone in the 19th and 20th centuries. Long ago disused and utterly uninhabited, Ailsa Craig still stands eleven miles out to sea, presiding over the links at Turnberry, another of its mysteries.
THE AILSA | OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP VENUE
Named after the third Marquess of Ailsa, who owned the land on which it was built, this par-71, 6,474-yard Championship course is one of golf's storied places. Home to four Open Championships, Ailsa has shaped some of the most remarkable moments in the tournament's history.
Set alongside the glorious Ayrshire coastline, with Arran and Ailsa Craig as a stunning backdrop, it is one of the finest golfing destinations in the world.
With its illustrious history spanning over 100 years, Trump Turnberry has added a new chapter to its inspiring story with over £200m invested by new owners The Trump Organization to completely restore and revamp the resort, including the Championship Ailsa course.
The Ailsa is one of the world’s most loved golf courses and has had the privilege of hosting the Open Championship four times, including the unforgettable 1977 Duel in the Sun. Since acquiring the resort in 2014, The Trump Organization and famed golf course architects Mackenzie & Ebert have completed a meticulous historic study and modern day review of the Ailsa course, creating a true masterpiece.
A selection of inspiring changes have been implemented including the creation of five dramatic and stunning new holes plus a range of alterations covering virtually every corner of the course. Since these changes have been made, the Ailsa has been ranked by Golf Monthly as the UK & Ireland’s number one golf course.
The Ailsa was also named ‘Revdevelopment of the Year’ by Golf Inc Magazine, stating it as “an iconic property that has been restored immaculately without losing the proud history created over hundreds of years.’
All 18 holes have seen changes made with huge areas of turf moved between the various holes to complete the refurbishment.
The 1st hole has been lengthened at both the tee and the green and at the same time creating a wider landing area.
The 4th hole enjoys a new tee located close to the sea with the green moved further on and edged towards the coastline. This hole starts an incredible 8-hole coastal stretch that will prove to be unrivalled in the golfing world.
The 5th hole has been lengthened to become a par five for general play. The green has been moved back into the wonderfully natural site of the valley behind the old green, creating a great amphitheatre for spectators.
The 6th hole becomes a much shorter par 3 demanding accuracy played from the dune bank high above the beach to a green perched atop a natural dune.
The 9th hole has been turned into an awe inspiring par three playing across the bay giving golfers the thrill of launching a tee shot across the water.
The 10th hole has been transformed to become one of the world’s best par fives. The hole will arc its way around the bay posing questions to the golfer for all of the shots. The green has been taken back to the old 11th tee with the rocks and ocean lying immediately behind.
The 11th is a tremendous new par 3 hole played across a series of rocky inlets giving it a really intimate character.
The 14th is also a new hole, this time a par 5, with spectacular 180 degree sea views and the magnificent Turnberry lighthouse as a focal point.
Finally, the 18th hole gives the course the finish it deserves. The championship tee has been taken back to the dune ridge above the beach, producing a straight par 4 with the iconic hotel as a focus beyond the green.Turnberry’s iconic lighthouse, which has acted as a timeless beacon for golfers from across the world, is also re-emerging as the world’s most impressive half way house. Situated on the cusp of the rocky coastline, stop and enjoy a refreshment while marvelling not only at the new challenges laid out by this magnificent course, but the panoramic beauty of the surrounding scenery.