Kingsbarns Golf Links has confirmed an exceptional start to 2014 with advance bookings reaching record levels. Located seven miles south of St Andrews, Kingsbarns has experienced high demand for advanced tee time bookings, well up on the same time last year. After its customary maintenance closure over the winter period, the seaside links course will re-open on 22nd March hosting both overseas and local golfers.
With the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup teeing off in Scotland this year, the course's chief executive said these latest results point towards a busy season ahead. "We are extremely excited about 2014," commented Alan Hogg. "We have already seen an upsurge in bookings around the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup, and if the sun shines, as it did last year, this will only help with last-minute bookings and additional replay rounds."
As well as a momentous year for sport in Scotland, Hogg attributed the record-breaking start to the hard work of his team during 2013 which saw final qualifying for the Ricoh Women's British Open and the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship staged at the acclaimed links course.
"The last 12 months have been exceptional at Kingsbarns. We focus not just on the golf course itself but also on the total customer experience and we strive to deliver 100% satisfaction throughout the season," said Hogg. "We work hard, constantly refining what we do; fine-tuning our customer service and making the type of changes golfers appreciate on and off the course. This has carried through to 2014 and the record bookings we have received."
He continued: "Everyone knows the eyes of the world will be on Scotland this year and that gives us a great opportunity to showcase what we offer as well. We are seeing the benefits of bringing blue-ribbon events to Scotland with our advance bookings breaking all previous records. Hotels, inns, B&Bs, restaurants and other golf courses are also seeing an uplift in advance bookings this year."
This season will follow a bumper year for the Fife course which saw golf rounds and caddie rounds boosted by an exceptional summer in 2013. "A lot of our visitors took advantage of the brilliant sunshine, especially around the time of the Open Championship at Muirfield," explained Hogg. "What especially pleased us was the reaction from the golfers visiting Kingsbarns. According to our customer feedback, it's the all-round experience that makes Kingsbarns so special. Customers reported the course conditioning was 'the best ever', our caddies are 'just fantastic' and in addition the clubhouse staff provides welcoming pre and post-round services."
The team's hard work paid off when Kingsbarns became one of only three modern golf venues to make the top 20 courses worldwide selected by 250 golf course architects in the first survey of its kind. Together with a hat-trick of awards from Golf Tourism Scotland, 2013 was a solid year for the renowned links course.
Most recently, Kingsbarns was named 50th best golf course in Golf Digest's first ever World's Greatest 100 Courses. "There was a lot to be proud of last year," said Hogg. "This year we are looking forward to what looks like an even more remarkable season not only for Kingsbarns but also for Scottish tourism in general. Our entire team is prepared to do our part to deliver a memorable, world-class Scottish experience."
1) Kingsbarns Golf Links is located seven miles south east of St Andrews, widely known as the Home of Golf. Kingsbarns opened in its present form in 2000 and has since been recognised as one of the very top golf courses in the world.
2) Golf has been played at Kingsbarns since 1793. Dressed in blue coats, the Kingsbarns men met for their spring and autumn meetings to compete for the Kingsbarns Golf Society medals. After the course died out in the 1800s, in 1922 the Kingsbarns Golf Club was re-established with Willie Auchterlonie laying out a nine hole course on the links. The course again reverted to rough pasture with the onset of the Second World War.
3) Today's course was designed by Kyle Phillips and has received a host of awards including being ranked No 1 by Golfweek Magazine (2010, 2011 and 2012) in the Great Britain and Ireland Modern Courses category, the 19th best course in the world by Golf Course Architecture's 2013 poll and awarded Best Golf Club and Course Experience of the Year by the Scottish Golf Tourism Excellence Awards (2011, 2012 and 2013).
4) Each Autumn Kingsbarns joins the Old Course, St Andrews and Carnoustie Golf Links to co-host the European Tour's prestigious Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
5) The 2014 Ryder Cup match will be staged on the PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles from 26-28 September.
6) The 2014 Commonwealth Games will be held in Glasgow between 23 July - 3 August.
7) For more information about Kingsbarns Golf Links, please visit www.kingsbarns.com/home
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