Duff House Royal

Duff House Royal

Duff House Royal

Duff House Royal | NCG Top 100s: Scotland

 The Duff House Royal Golf Club is one of the northernmost golf courses in Scotland, sitting on the northeastern coastline of the North Sea, around an hour from Aberdeen. 
The course is just south of Banff, and sits on the banks of the River Deveron. Several holes on the layout features the water hazard as just one of the dangers. 
Alister MacKenzie was the genius behind the redesign of the course in 1924, with the updated layout now having been around for a century. The club opened 14 years prior, in 1910. 
Visit the Duff House Royal website here.  

A Brief History of Duff House Royal

The Duff House Royal Golf Club has been around for more than a century now, with the club being founded in 1910.  
Archie Simpson – who also designed the Balgownie at Royal Aberdeen – was the man behind the original layout at Duff House Royal. 
Golf course architecture royalty came in following the First World War. The great Alister MacKenzie – of Augusta and Alwoodley fame – redesigned the course in the 1920s. MacKenzie’s work included the redesign of all 18 greens on the layout, with the course being ready for play in 1924. 
During that work, the club received its ‘Royal’ status. The Princess Royal Louise became Patroness of the club, and it was renamed Duff House Royal. 

Duff House Royal Review | NCG Top 100s: Scotland

The 18-hole layout at the Duff House Royal Golf Club is a flat, beautifully manicured parkland with little rough. The large two-tiered greens are classic MacKenzie work, and the many well-positioned bunkers and trees make the course a severe but fair challenge. The course is bounded by the River Deveron, which is a hazard for those who are wayward off the tee at the 7th, 16th and 17th. 
The course at Duff House Royal measures just over 6,100 yards, which isn’t the longest. However, with it only being a Par 68, that makes it that much more difficult. It begins with a gentle opening hole of just 315 yards. It is played to a double green – one of two on the golf course. The 1st shares a green with the 17th, while 6 and 15 also share a green. Following the opener is the 2nd, which is another relatively short par 4. Again, there is plenty of sand on route to the green.  
The par 4s continue, with the opening five holes of the Duff House Royal course all being under 400 yards. The 3rd is the longest of those at 382 from the tips, and it plays as a dog-leg right around the trees. Bunkers line both the 4th and 5th fairways, before you get to the par 3 6th. It is just 130 yards, and played to one of the two double greens. There is a mound in the middle of the green which basically marks the back edge.  
The 7th is where the River Deveron comes into play for the first time. 7 is a 450-yard par 4, and anything left of the fairway will be in danger of finding the water. The 8th plays ever so slightly inland from the river, but again, left is not the place to be hitting your tee shot. The 9th, 'Kirkside', is a beautiful 172-yard par 3 with the river on the left and bunkered front left and to the right. With the pin hard to the right, a medium-to-long iron is required and the ideal shot requires a fade to stop the ball on the green. It is a great way to conclude the front nine. 
The back nine at Duff House Royal begins with a tricky dog-leg left par 4 that pushes 400 yards. The 11th is a 204-yard par 3 with a long green, and the tough start to the back nine continues with the 12th. Named 'Plateau', begins with an exacting drive which has to be drawn round the trees. This 498-yard par 5 features a superb view of Duff House from the fairway. Although there are no bunkers, the green is shaped sharply from right to left and it is virtually impossible to hold the ball on the green with a long approach shot from the right of the fairway. 13, the next short hole, is another tough one. It is only 165 yards to the centre, but from the whites, you play slightly across the green on an angle, making it a shallower target to stop the ball on. 
14 and 15 are two lengthy par 4s that start the tough closing stretch. The latter has eight bunkers down it, culminating in the double green with the 6th. The 16th is a 240-yard par 3 and it is one that has ruined many a tidy card. The green is well guarded by bunkers on the left and water to the right to add to the already prodigious difficulty of the hole's length. The penultimate hole, 'Bridge', is a tough 462-yard two shotter with out of bounds on both sides of the fairway up to the hole. Usually played into the prevailing wind and requires two good shots to reach in regulation. The closing hole plays alongside the boundary of the course, with out of bounds just yards from the fairway. The safe play is out to the left, before finding the green with your second. 

FAQs about Duff House Royal

Where is Duff House Royal located?  
Duff House Royal is situated in the northeast corner in Scotland in Aberdeenshire. It is based just outside the town of Banff, and the course lies slightly inland from the North Sea coastline, instead playing alongside the River Deveron, which features throughout the layout. Aberdeen is the closest major city, sitting around 50 miles to the south of Duff House Royal. 
There are no train services running to Banff, with driving being the best way to get to Duff House Royal. For international visitors to the region, both Inverness Airport and Aberdeen Dyce Airport are the two best options. The latter is around an hour from the venue, while Inverness Airport is just under two hours west. 

What golf facilities does Duff House Royal offer?
There is not a full-length driving range at Duff House Royal, but there is a practice area between the 2nd, 3rd and 17th holes of the course. There is also a putting green by the clubhouse and the 1st tee to allow golfers to get a feel for the surfaces before taking to the course.  

What are the green fees at Duff House Royal?
The price of a green fee at Duff House Royal changes throughout the year, depending on the season. It is also different depending on whether it is a weekday or weekend. 
For more information on current green fees at Duff House Royal visit their website here
Visit the Duff House Royal website here