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Trump International: A truly special – but challenging – golf links

Why we would rather be playing this one-of-a-kind Scottish links
 

As you might expect at any Trump golf facility, everything here is top spec for a links course.

Known by the man himself as “the greatest course in the world”, Trump International Golf Club & Links quite a lot to live up to, especially when teeing off a matter of hours after Trump, Colin Montgomerie, Sandy Jones and James Finnegan have been bagpiped on to the 1st tee and declared one after the other that this is a golfing experience unlike any other.

He described the course as five per cent his work and 95 that of Mother Nature. Now try following a build up like that by playing and evaluating the course as you would any other you are experiencing for the first time.

History

Also present on the 1st tee on Trump International’s opening day in 2012 was the designer, Martin Hawtree, a much-respected figure with an academic, donnish presence. He could hardly present a greater contrast with his employer on this project, yet here he was in a eulogy every bit as epic as that of Trump’s.

On what the Scots would describe as a ‘dreich’ July afternoon, conditions were grey, moist yet mercifully calm – at least by the standards of this exposed coastline. The course did not play much like a links – but then we had played down the road at Murcar the evening before and neither did that. Normally as traditional a seaside test as you would find, after recent weather Murcar was soft, green and lush.

What makes it special

Ownership of the course lies on the US side of the Atlantic and its proprietor took seven long years to get golfers onto the first tee as he had to overcome a series of objections that were made to sitting the fairways with a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

The second you pull into the driveway it makes you sit up in your seat and know you’re about to visit somewhere special. Don’t be surprised if this will be one of the best golf courses that you will ever play.

Where does it rank?

14th in Scotland, 27th in GB&I, and 2nd in Aberdeen.

Where is it?

Trump International lies a short drive north of Aberdeen in the town of Balmedie on the east coast of Scotland.

Get in touch with Trump International

Trump International Golf Links Ireland

For more information about the club and course, visit its website or call them on 01358 743300.

Have you played Trump International? Let us know in the comments, or tweet us.

Ben Outhwaite

Ben is National Club Golfer's Marketing Editor and the latest addition to our golf equipment review team.

He specialises in testing golf bags, beginner golf club sets, apparel and golf accessories. He also collates our buying guides so you know which are the latest and greatest bits of golf equipment on the market.

Ben picked up his first golf club when he was five years old – which was in fact a left-handed set of clubs!

He is a member at Rudding Park Golf Club and has a handicap of fifteen.

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