It is now almost certain that Trump Golf will host two Major Championships in the coming decade.
Yesterday came the news that the 2022 PGA Championship will be played at New Jersey’s Trump National Golf Club. This was just a few hours after Donald Trump was confirmed as the new owner of Scotland’s Turnberry Resort, an established host venue for The Open Championship, which Trump Golf is believed to have acquired for around £36 million.
The sellers, Leisurecorp, the Dubai World company specialising in developments and investments in the sports and leisure sector, acquired the course in 2008 and paid £55 million for the property which includes two 18-hole Championship courses: the world famous Ailsa Course – which has already hosted The Open Championship four times (most recently in 2009) – and the Kintyre Course. The Resort also includes the new Turnberry Performance Golf Academy and in addition to the iconic hotel there are lodges and cottages as well as an outdoor activity centre, a spa and a wide range of banquet and conference facilities.
In an interview with Golf.Com, Mr Trump has confirmed that he does not intend to make any alterations to the course unless asked to do so by the R&A.
“I’m not going to touch a thing unless the Royal and Ancient ask for it or approve it,” he said. “I have the greatest respect for the R&A and for Peter Dawson. I won’t do anything to the golf course at all without their full stamp of approval.”
Speaking at the HSBC Golf Business Forum earlier this week, R&A chief executive Peter Dawson said Trump’s acquisition is unlikely to affect Turnberry’s status as an Open venue. “Turnberry is a great favourite among the players and it’s on the Open rota for sure,” said Dawson.
The purchase has caused some speculation about the future management of both the hotel, run as part of The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts operated by Starwood, and the golf operations, run by Troon.
A spokeswoman for Starwood said: “Following yesterday’s announcement that Donald J. Trump has entered into an agreement to purchase Turnberry Resort from the current owners Leisurecorp, Starwood Hotels & Resorts will continue to manage the hotel under The Luxury Collection brand and Starwood’s long-term management contract will remain in place” while Dana Garmany, CEO & Founder Troon Golf, told GBN.com “We remain focussed on delivering our contracted management services with Turnberry. It is very much business as usual.”
Turnberry Resort www.turnberryresort.co.uk
Trump Golf www.trumpgolf.com