Donald Trump's Aberdeen golf resort is finally coming to Scotland - for real this time
It’s official (pretty much). Donald Trump’s $1.5 billion golf resort has been given the green light by Scotland’s national finance secretary. After being thwarted by local Aberdeen environmentalists and officials last year, it appears the economic benefits of the resort, which will bring an estimated 6,000 jobs and loads more corporate and vacation tourism to a city with a dwindling fishing and oil business, were far too great.
I visited the site two Octobers ago. Then, onsite officials were confident they would break ground the following June, which of course didn’t happen. From a touring golfer’s perspective, you couldn’t help but get excited at the thought of two links courses being built on such rugged dunes land. Trump has often claimed that this site could yield the best golf course in the world. That promise has been put in the hands of Martin Hawtree, a links design specialist who has renovated such storied courses as Carnoustie and Lahinch (the latter of which is one of my favorite courses anywhere - click here for the review).
While it’s remarkable to see that Trump still plans on building such a luxury real estate project in the thick of the global housing and economic crisis, the good news is that by waiting it out, the dollar-to-pound exchange rate now versus two years ago is going to save him nearly $500 million.
Even so, he’s a bit late to the Scotland golf & real estate boom. Many high-end projects have been built over the last ten or so years, like Loch Lomond G.C., The Carrick at Loch Lomond, Machrihanish Dunes, Spey Valley at Aviemore and Tom Doak’s Renaissance Club in East Lothian. St. Andrews’ has also produced Kingsbarns and the new Castle Course. The case could be made that the U.K. has reached a saturation point with high-end golf, especially with economic conditions affecting the travel industry.
But now it looks like the only thing standing in Trump’s way is a lone Scottish fisherman, Michael Forbes, who has sworn not to sell his house that sits in the center of the property. Trump’s plans say they can be built around the domain, but there may be some legalities that hinder the project further.
But the major hurdles have been cleared, and a major golf transformation is coming to Scotland’s northeast coast.
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there was a nature warden - if the natural value of the area was worth a man's wages then what is it worth now?
Trump's project is an American folly that can only deny
today's young Aberdonian a simple,wholesome outlet for his energies that was freely available to his counterpart of the 20th century. Progress or what?