Muirfield Golf Club

Muirfield Golf Club | NCG Top 100s: GB&I Golf Courses

Muirfield, and the famous membership of The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, are famed throughout the world. 

As the jewel in the crown of East Lothian, one of the great golfing regions, Muirfield is arguably the best course in Scotland as well, which is not a claim to make lightly.
So what makes it so special? Let's start with the routing. The front nine plays in an anti-clockwise loop around the perimeter of the grounds, with the homeward side played in the opposite direction throughout the interior of the property. 

What this presents the golfer with is an ever-changing mix of wind directions to navigate. There is no settling into a rhythm, but a recalibration is required on each tee.
Muirfield is often thought of as one of the game's fairest links. There are very few blind shots and the fairways and greens are relatively. A stellar collection of par 3s represent another of Muirfield's highlights.
The conditioning and presentation is second-to-none, at any time of the year. You will not play off crisper fairways or putt on smoother greens. 
Put simply, Muirfield is a must-visit course when playing golf in Scotland; and if the golf itself isn’t enough to encourage a return trip (which it will be), the incredible lunch served in the famous old clubhouse will definitely have you dreaming of a return visit.

Visit Muirfield's website here.
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A Brief History of Muirfield Golf Club

The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers was founded in the mid-1700s, creating the rules of the sport as we now know them in 1744. Indeed, the original manuscript is still on display with the clubhouse. 

After several changes of venue, including a spell at Musselburgh Old, the members  located to the club’s current spot and enlisted Old Tom Morris to create an 18-hole layout for them. 
The course opened for play in 1891, and the Open arrived for the first time a year later. Since then, the course has been a regular stop for the R&A’s most prestigious event and has perhaps the most enviable list of winners of any Claret Jug destination.

Just look at some of the names who have won at Muirfield: Braid, Hagen, Nicklaus, Trevino, Watson, Faldo, Els, and Mickelson. 
In 1923, the membership purchased the land on which the course now sits, and for the first time in their multi-century history they had full control over their golfing terrain. Enlisting the services of the great Harry Colt, the course was amended from Morris’ original design to the special and distinctive routing we still enjoy to this day.

Muirfield Golf Club Review | NCG Top 100s: GB&I Golf Courses

A Flavour Of What’s To Come

When the wind blows into the face of players as they contemplate the first tee shot of the day, the 440-yard opener is one of the most challenging in the game. 

Thankfully, the 2nd and 3rd are a little shorter and much less daunting. However, with no fewer than 15 bunkers between them, they are no pushover. 

The 4th is the first of the short holes and can be stretched back to a whopping 230 yards from the back tees. Unsurprisingly, it was the second most difficult hole when The Open last arrived in 2013.

The Beauty Of Muirfield

Muirfield shines when its holes mix seamlessly together and nowhere do you see this more than on the stretch between the 5th and 10th. 

Can you pick up shots on the par-5 5th and 9th? They play in opposite directions so it's a real achievement to conquer both on the same day. What about at the short 7th? It only calls for a short iron unless the wind os in your face yet it is so easy to run up a score here, especially if you find sand. 

It’s Not All About Length

Following the long par-4 10th, playing away from the clubhouse towards the sea, Muirfield offers its only blind tee shot, at the 11th, and then another medium-length par 4, before one of the great short holes at the 13th. With bunkers waiting to catch any shot that is even slightly less than perfect, it is the most demanding of challenges and also features one of the more dramatically sloping greens.

The Turn For Home

Reach the 14th and the closing stretch is in sight. This and the 15th are two of the very strongest par 4s, the later with a green that is so deceptive, Rory McIlroy putted off it and through the back during the 2013 Open Championship. The 16th is the last of the the short holes and that comes before the final par 5, which turns to the left at driving distance with the green slightly sunken and protected between two dunes.

The 18th is arguably the best closing hole on the Open rota – gun-barrel straight and very slightly uphill to a green positioned squarely in front of that iconic clubhouse. And with the thought of the best lunch in golf on the horizon, it’s easy to get distracted. 

After a great closing drive, you can stand in the 18th fairway, trying to emulate Nick Faldo en route to making his 18th and final par of the day in the final round of the Open in 1987.

For most of us, 18 net pars would be the achievement of a lifetime, but Muirfield is a place that is meant to be enjoyed without pencil in hand.

Where Is Muirfield Golf Club Located?

Muirfield Golf Club is situated in the  village of Gullane, East Lothian, Scotland. The golf club is located close to many other notable courses, including; Gullane, Archerfield, North Berwick, The Renaissance Club, and Luffness.

Edinburgh Airport is approximately 45 minutes from the golf club for those arriving from overseas, or from  England, by plane.

What Facilities Are At Muirfield Golf Club?

The golf club at Muirfield wasn’t always known for an extensive list of facilities for guests, other than a fabulous lunch, and a driving range. However, a newly added Pro Shop, offering the ability to buy club merchandise, as well as to rent clubs, trolleys, and caddies, means there’s everything that you might need on site. 

Is There Accommodation At Muirfield Golf Club?

Muirfield Golf Club itself does not offer on-site accommodation. However, the surrounding area of Gullane and East Lothian provides various lodging options for visitors looking to stay near the golf club. The Greywalls Hotel, which looks out over the course, is legendary. 

With such a strong network of course in the region, most hotels are used to groups of traveling golfers, however, make sure to book early as hotels can become fully booked – particularly during the golfing season.

Is Muirfield Golf Club Open To Non-Members?

Yes. Muirfield offers visitor green fees on selected days throughout the week. 
A round at Muirfield through the summer months will cost £340, with a day ticket coming up to £525 for two rounds, but this includes lunch.

Visit Muirfield's website here.
Go back to the NCG Top 100s Homepage.