Designed by 2010 Ryder Cup Captain Colin Montgomerie, in association with European Golf Design, Rowallan Castle represents Monty’s first course design in Scotland. Located near Kilmarnock in the heart of picturesque Ayrshire and only 30 minutes drive south west of Glasgow, the course is set within one of Scotland’s finest country estates, complete with 1000-year-old yew trees, trout streams, two magnificent castles, and stunning views to Ailsa Craig and Arran in the Firth of Clyde.
On hearing the news Colin Montgomerie commented: “I am absolutely delighted that golfers will now have the opportunity to play the first golf course I have designed in my homeland. It is certainly a very proud day for me and another high point in what is proving to be a very exciting year. My best wishes go to everyone at Rowallan Castle Golf Club and I’m sure the course will be a great success.”
Ross McMurray, the lead architect for Colin Montgomerie and European Golf Design, said: “I am very pleased with the way the golf course has developed. Much of the site was designated as Historic Landscape so we had to adopt a highly sensitive approach to the golf course design to ensure that it blended sympathetically with its surroundings. By using a traditional design style and concentrating much of the feature shaping on green complexes and bunker formations we have created a golf course with a strong sense of character which responds to this wonderful setting. It is pleasing to the eye and I’m sure it will be fun to play.”
While the golf course has primarily been designed for the members there’s enough of a test for the professional golfer as well if needed. The course measures 7000 yards from the back tees, but with a good variety of hole lengths and plenty of teeing area the course won’t feel desperately long for the average player. There are even a couple of short par 4’s which, although offering the opportunity for birdies, have the potential for some very high scores indeed.
Colin Montgomerie’s trademark deep bunkering will certainly be a hazard worth avoiding while the undulating greens will test even the best putters.
Those that were fortunate enough to get a sneak preview at Rowallan during limited play last autumn were full of praise for the golf course and now the members and their guests will have the opportunity to fully test their skills against the layout. A limited number of tee-times are also available for prospective members on a pay and play basis.
European Golf Design are the joint venture design company of the European Tour and IMG. Formed in 1992 European Golf Design have designed over 50 courses throughout Europe, The Middle East and South Africa with another 30 currently in the design or construction phase. The Twenty Ten Ryder Cup Course at Celtic Manor is a European Golf Design course.
Rowallan Castle www.rowallancastle.com
European Golf Design www.egd.com