Tuesday, 9 May 2017

A Day at Blairgowrie - A Focus on Scotland's Spectacular Inland Golf

Visitors to Scotland, particularly those from the United States, are naturally attracted to the special aura, history and heritage that surrounds a visit to the wonderful championship links golf courses. We're thinking of St Andrews, Royal Troon, Prestwick, Muirfield and Turnberry.

With so many tremendous links challenges on offer it is sometimes difficult, even for the return visitor, to see any reason to head inland to play parkland or heath-land golf. There are however some wonderful inland golf courses in Scotland and last week saw Duncan from Executive Golf and Leisure test his driving skills on the tight tree lined fairways of one of our very favourite parkland courses - The Rosemount at Blairgowrie Golf Club in Perthshire.

One of the things I remember as a child heading to the Angus Hotel in Blairgowrie for regular summer holidays was passing by the highest hedge in the world / in those days before Google I have no idea how that information came to be known but just before you arrive at the golf club turning you will indeed pass this record breaking piece of foliage. It is impressive!

The town is not far north of Perth and Gleneagles and if you are based in the world class hotel resort the short journey is well worth it for the golfer. Rosemount is the older of the two 18 hole courses that make up Blairgowrie Golf Club, the other being the championship Landsdowne which hosts a number of Scottish PGA and Scottish Golf events regularly.

There is also 'The Wee Course', designed by the famed course architect Dr Alister MacKenzie (Augusta, Cypress Point), which in itself is probably one of the best nine hole layouts in the country.

Our play on the day was over the older James Braid designed layout of the Rosemount and then the Wee Course after a few refreshments... whilst the fairways are described as being more forgiving than the Landsdowne layout, that would depend on your driving skills on any given day! The greens are large and rolling as befits its age and status. Before James Braid's alterations and extensions, the course was originally laid out by Dr Alister MacKenzie. The current 17th hole is a brilliant reminder of his work and quite clearly to golf aficionados, is classic MacKenzie in design.

The location offers wonderful countryside views and seclusion and quite often the local wildlife will be your only other interaction, red squirrels and deer aplenty. It made us wonder why indeed we did not play a few more rounds on inland courses and indeed, the discussion moved to perhaps a trip over to Fife to sample Ladybank, another favourite of ours.

Rosemount measures around 400 yards shorter than its neighbour at 6630 yards but offers a great challenge. We only managed single round on our visit but if you have the time a round on both would make for a challenging day our this wonderful parkland property.

It really is a great course complimented superbly with excellent practice facilities and a stunning clubhouse. It is a captivating golfing location and if you have a spare day we can certainly recommend it to you.

For more information on Scottish Golf Vacations, Corporate Golf or to find out more about Executive Golf and Leisure click on the link

Executive Golf  and Leisure Website


Wednesday, 22 March 2017

The Best of South West Ireland

From Cork to Shannon

Our blog review of the south west of Ireland, a golfers paradise on the Wild Atlantic Way.

Sunday 

Setting off from Edinburgh Airport on Sunday morning, we took the short 90 minute flight across the Irish Sea arriving in Cork with Aer Lingus. Cork has a small but modern airport terminal and is conveniently located for a fuss-free transfer into the city of Cork within 20 minutes. The ease of the connection proves that a golf trip combining Scotland and Ireland is easily achievable and worth consideration depending on the top courses on your hit list.

Met by our wonderful driver Conor in the arrivals hall we made our way to the magnificent Hayfield Manor, our base for Sunday night. This grand, traditional Irish home offers the finest 5 Star accommodation within Cork. Located close to the historic main buildings of University College Cork, it is well worth a stroll around the campus grounds to sample some of the fine architecture. Although based within the city, Hayfield Manor with its pristine grounds has the feel of a country manor and presents a wonderful escape within a bustling Cork. Possibly its finest asset, Hayfield Manor is family owned and operated and the personal service and Irish charm afforded to guests is second to none.

Hayfield Manor - Cork
Easily reached and worth a visit while in the Cork area is:
  • ·         Cobh (pronounced Cove): Cobh is a town situated on an island in Cork City’s harbour. The second deepest natural harbour in the world, it is known as the Titanic’s last port of call in 1912. The Titanic Experience at Cobh is a visitor attraction in the former White Star Line ticket office, while more displays are available in the Cobh Heritage Centre. The Heritage Centre is particularly apt for American visitors; if you claim Irish descent, then there is a good chance that your ancestors left Ireland through Cobh on the south coast of Ireland. Cobh was the departure point for 2.5 million of the six million Irish people who emigrated to North America between 1848 and 1950.
  • ·         The Midleton Distillery and the Jameson Whiskey Experience: a journey through the story and making of Irish whiskey. This distillery operated for 150 years, from 1825 until 1975, when the workers clocked off on a Friday in July, to start work in the new Midleton Distillery the following Monday. Thankfully, the old distillery has been beautifully preserved and it is now one of the most striking and interesting tourist attractions in Ireland.

Monday

Fully fuelled after enjoying a delightful breakfast overlooking the manicured gardens at Hayfield Manor, we headed south from Cork towards the coast and Old Head of Kinsale. A picturesque drive winding through typical Irish countryside, we passed through the pretty town of Kinsale, a foodie’s haven with a fantastic choice of eateries, before reaching the spectacular coastline. The Golf Links at Old Head is a striking and unique facility. Balanced on a jut of land stretching out into the Atlantic Ocean with dramatic cliff tops covered in lush Irish turf, this is a must play course and unlike any other golfing destination in the world.

Old Head Golf Links - 18th Green & Lighthouse
The pretty and arty coastal town of Kinsale is ideal for a couple of nights stay or just to explore for an hour or two after your golf before moving onwards. The wide range of high quality cafes and restaurants will leave you spoilt for choice. Moving on up to Killarney, we enjoyed a picturesque drive from County Cork into County Kerry with a sudden change of landscape, rolling green hills giving way to a more mountainous, rocky and dramatic landscape. Killarney is comfortably reached within 2 hours from Kinsale.

Killarney is often a base for our clients who play the likes of Waterville and Tralee. Set in incredibly beautiful countryside and bordering Loch Leane and the Killarney National Park, the town is a special place indeed and the hub of the South West. Brim full of history, heritage, activities, and world class hospitality, you are guaranteed a great taste of Ireland while in Killarney. We checked in at the Killarney Park Hotel, a luxury 5 Star establishment within walking distance of the town’s many eateries and bars. Again, most notable from our stay was the wonderful service and comfortable surroundings.

After a visit to see the impressive Aghadoe Heights Hotel situated on the hill above the town of Killarney (stunning views of Loch Leane and Killarney National Park come as standard), we set off on the famous Ring of Kerry tourist route to reach Waterville Golf Links.

Waterville Golf Links (1889) is a remote but majestic links course made famous in the modern era by the regular visits of Payne Stewart, Tiger Woods and Mark O’Meara, who discovered the course to be perfect for Open Championship preparation. We chatted with legendary club secretary Noel Cronin, who was then kind enough to let us loose on the course with a couple of buggies in order to gain a feel for the brilliant layout. The clubhouse facilities are undergoing renovations which will ensure a fantastic visitor experience for years to come. We guarantee that it’s worth the effort to reach Waterville.

Heading back to Killarney for the night, we passed through the town of Killorglin. If you're lucky enough to be in the area at the right time of year (August), be sure to visit the ‘Puck Fair’ and see the crowning of the King Puck for a true taste of Irish culture! Dating back to 1603, the event involves many goats and great festivities... http://puckfair.ie/ 

Tuesday

A fine breakfast in the beautiful Victorian dining room at the historic Malton Hotel in Killarney set us up for the long day ahead. First stop - Tralee. Tralee Golf Club is reached by passing through the town of the same name (the largest in County Kerry) and out towards the west coast. Anticipation builds as you take in the stunning views of the Dingle Mountains across Tralee bay and catch a glimpse of the castle ruin situated by the 3rd hole. A few miles of twisty road later and you arrive at the mouth of the bay where the club is located. Designed by Arnold Palmer and opened in 1992, Tralee Golf Club occupies a truly breath taking portion of the Wild Atlantic Way coastline. With a vast sandy beach stretching from the south end of the course some 5 miles north, you'll fail to tire of the outlook while playing this course. A course of two differing half’s, the front 9 plays on the lower and flatter portion of the property while the back 9 rolls through spectacular dune land. Unlimited fun awaits you on your visit to Tralee! 

Tralee Golf Club - 17th Hole
Moving on up the west coast, we arrived at Ballybunion, a busy tourist town with the famous links course being the main attraction. The club, established in 1893, now boasts 2 fantastic courses (The Old & The Cashen) and a spacious, modern clubhouse. In contrast to many of the prestigious clubs in Scotland, Irish clubhouses are generally open to the public and therefore a more extensive hospitality service may be available, resulting in a great atmosphere with a mix of visitors and locals, golfers and non-golfers. Ballybunion’s clubhouse overlooks the great dunes and crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean in the distance. The Old Course exudes a majestic feel with beautifully contoured fairways that tumble down through a blanket of grassy dunes. It's little surprise that these challenging holes have been consistently rated among the top courses in the world.

Our third course of the day was a visit to see the friendly folks at Lahinch Golf Club. After a quick 20 minute crossing of the Shannon River via a very useful ferry (cutting 2 hours of road time), we made our way up the coast and into the seaside town of Lahinch. With a similar setting and feel to Ballybunion, Lahinch is a bustling and charming town popular with surfers and golfers. Again, the course is set within great rolling dunes and on first impressions it's actually hard to see more than just a couple of holes. Considering that the 3 prominent influences on this layout have been old Tom Morris, Alastair McKenzie and latterly Martin Hawtree, excitement builds to see what lies over each dune and around every dogleg. The clubhouse offers a warm welcome with some excellent catering, locker room facilities and Pro Shop. 

Only a short drive from the course and just out of town stand the Cliffs of Moher, a must see attraction while in the area. We recommend you set aside an hour or so to take in the natural and wild drama of these sheer 700ft cliffs. 

Our final destination on our whirlwind tour was Trump International Golf Links & Hotel in Doonbeg. A luxurious hotel and resort, our expectations were met with a warm welcome and marvellous facilities. After a recent 2 year redevelopment of the original Greg Norman course by Martin Hawtree, the layout now boasts views of the Atlantic Ocean from 16 of the 18 holes. This is a wild and spectacular setting for championship links. A walk up the 18th with waves crashing in and the imposing hotel beyond the green is sure to be a memorable one. For a sample of the local life, Doonbeg village sits just 5 minutes inland and provides a number of dinner and drinks options with live music never far away. Everything you would expect from a luxury Trump resort is delivered in style with the added benefit of true Irish charm and charisma throughout.

Trump Doonbeg - 18th Green

Wednesday

After a lovely breakfast overlooking the 18th green we headed for Shannon Airport via Dromoland Castle, a grand 5 star facility with an incredible history and boasting luxurious accommodation. With an impressive parkland golf course attached on the estate this is a great option at the start of your tour before heading to the coast to play the finest links courses. Shannon Airport is easily reachable within 1 hour from Doonbeg and Lahinch and it presents another well managed, small airport a very efficient transit.

Overall the south west of Ireland presents world class golf and world class hospitality in abundance. We have the knowledge and experience which will allow you to experience the best Ireland has to offer. See our three Top Tips below;


Top Tips for a South of Ireland Golf Tour:

  • ·         Kerry Airport: Located only a short drive from Killarney, Kerry Airport is a small facility but is perfect for private jet access, bringing you straight to the heart of the south west and close to the finest links courses.
  • ·         Take a Driver: The wonderful Conor drove us in a spacious Mercedes V Class during our 4 day visit to South West Ireland and the value of his service cannot go unspoken or be underestimated. A driver with luxury vehicle will allow you to sit back, relax and take in the scenery as you are transported swiftly and professionally from one stop to the next. Conor’s knowledge and anecdotes turned a potentially challenging and stressful aspect of our tour into a hugely insightful and memorable time.
  • ·         Consider a Helicopter: With the stunning Wild Atlantic Way coastline and sometimes lengthy distances by road dependant on your itinerary, why not get a bird eye view and reduce your transfer times? A helicopter transfer always proves to be a great addition to any tour, and a flight from Old Head to Waterville or Ballybunion to Lahinch would live long in the memory.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Ryder Cup Reflection


What a weekend! Golf fans worldwide were treated an exhibition of exhilarating golf as Team USA, led by Davis Love III and his task force, regained the Ryder Cup after a run of 3 straight defeats in the biennial contest.
With Team USA going into the singles matches 3 points ahead, some of the golf witnessed on a birdie filled final day will live long in the memory. From Patrick Reed sending the Americans on their way by ousting Rory McIlroy in the top match, to Phil Mickelson and Sergio Garcia’s incredible half match featuring no less than 19 birdies; it was an enthralling exhibition of world class golf. 
The team at Executive Golf & Leisure were glued to the action over the weekend and now we are already looking forward to the next edition at Le Golf National near Paris in 2018.
Here’s the lowdown on the next Ryder Cup host venue, Le Golf National:
Location: Le Golf National is situated only 20 miles from the centre of Paris and close to the Palace of Versailles.
Length: 7,249 yards
Course Description: Built in 1990, Le Golf National is a purpose built ‘Stadium Course’ and the ‘Albatros’ Championship Course has played host to the French Open on the European Tour almost every year since 1991. Deliberately designed with spectators in mind, Le Golf National presents a tricky and undulating course that will create fantastic natural amphitheatres and allow fans to get close to the action with excellent vantage points. Water comes into play throughout and should ensure plenty of decisive drama with watery graves waiting on the 15th, 16th and 18th holes. The Le Golf National development includes two further courses and the French Golf Academy while it is also home to the French Golf Federation. 
Visit Paris and play this course before it hosts the pro's for the Ryder Cup in 2018, Contact us now for more information.
Three things we are already excited to see in 2018:
1. Rory and Reed: Part Deux!
Set to be two Ryder Cup stalwarts for many years to come, Rory McIlroy and Patrick Reed appear to bring the best out of each other’s games and, after Sundays enthralling contest, we are already hoping to see these two face off again in France. Spurred on by the home crowds, Reed managed to topple McIlroy in the top singles match with some stunning match play golf throughout. The result will have stung Europe’s talisman and we’re sure he’ll be fired up to make amends in 2 years’ time.
2. Rookie’s Return 
It was a strong week for Ryder Cup rookies overall, with fearlessness shining through as more experienced heads faltered. Team USA rookie Ryan Moore sealed victory for team USA with an eagle-birdie-par finish to see off Lee Westwood, while Brooks Koepka won his singles match against Danny Willett 5&4! On the European side, Rafael Cabrera Bello and Thomas Pieter’s in particular had Ryder Cup debuts to remember. Setting a new Ryder Cup rookie record, Pieter’s won 4 points from 5 matches and, at only 24 years of age, we expect the big hitting Belgian to produce the goods again in 2018 when backed by a home crowd.
3. French atmosphere, the Tricolore and Joie de Vivre
The USA’s Red, White and Blue will be swapped for the Blue, White and Red of the Tricolore in 2018 as France hosts its first Ryder Cup. It will be only the second time continental Europe has hosted the competition and the French will be keen to put on a unique show. Boasting excellent spectator facilities, Le Golf National promises to be a sea of noise, excitement and colour as the European team look to regain the cup. If Victor Dubuisson can find form and make the European team for a second time, the French will have even more to shout about and the galleries should be as boisterous as Hazeltine.
Do you want to be there for the Ryder Cup in 2018? Contact us now and we can make your Ryder Cup dream a reality.

Friday, 5 August 2016

5 Scottish and Irish Golf Courses on Every Golfer’s Bucket List




Whether you’re a seasoned professional golfer or a social player enthusiastic about the game, you’re likely to have a links golf bucket list – a collection of must-visit courses you simply have to play before you’re no longer able to swing a club. While this bucket list might vary from golfer to golfer, there are certain golfing destinations that are often common across the board - such as the Old Course at St Andrews, widely considered to be the holy grail of golf links and top of our recommended Scottish and Irish bucket list.

Golf has been played in Scotland and Ireland for centuries and is, particularly in Scotland and in line with the country’s egalitarian tradition, a pastime enjoyed right across the social spectrum. In Ireland, golf has a rich and colourful history and the country is currently one of the nations with the most golf courses per capita in the world. Both destinations offer some of the best links in the world with settings, scenery and hospitality second to none.

Even if you’ve got your bucket list set in stone, don’t discard any of these courses we feel should join your list of top golfing experiences to tick off.

The Old Course at St Andrews

The Old Course at St Andrews in Fife, Scotland is considered to be the "home of golf"; historic records show that golf has been played at St Andrews for more than 600 years. This prestigious golfing destination is steeped in history and boasts iconic landmarks such as The Royal and Ancient Clubhouse and Swilken Bridge.

Considered by many as the holy grail of tee-offs, St Andrews’ iconic Old Course is open to the public (with advance booking, of course) and offers golf enthusiasts the chance to truly follow in the footsteps of legends. St Andrews also offers guided tours of the facilities and links which allow you to soak up the rich history of the game and the fame of this esteemed location. Executive Golf & Leisure takes the prestige one step further, offering guaranteed tee times and  the opportunity to travel to St Andrews by helicopter.



Old Head Golf Links, Kinsale

Located in County Cork on the Southwest Coast of Ireland, Old Head Golf Links is a truly spectacular creation with the course jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean. Opened in 1997, members and guests of this exclusive club can enjoy unparalleled luxury in the 5 star accommodation and spa facilities.

The Old Head Golf Links is built on a 220-acre diamond of land framed by unspoilt cliffs, archetypical of Ireland’s rugged coastline, with splendid views of the Atlantic Ocean from all eighteen holes. Nine of the holes are played along the cliff tops and, with the ever-changing sea breezes, the Old Head course provides a stern challenge to even pro golfers who visit here.

The Royal County Down Golf Club

Located in Newcastle, County Down in Northern Ireland, The Royal County Down Golf Club is one of the oldest golfing destinations in Ireland, having opened its doors in 1889. It is located in one of the world’s most naturally beautiful settings in the Murlough Nature Reserve with the Mountains of Mourne as a stunning backdrop. Royal County Down has two 18-hole courses, the Annesley Links and the Championship Course which stretches along the shores of Dundrum Bay, offering a different vista from every hole.

The Championship Course is famous for its ‘bearded’ bunkers which feature overhanging lips of marram, red fescue and heather, as well as its ninth hole which is among the most photographed in the world because of the panoramic view from the large mound at which golfers tee off, some 60 feet above the tee.


The Annesley Links at Royal County Down shares the same magnificent setting as the Championship Links and, although it is shorter, it is still a very challenging course and offers magnificent views of the sea, sand dunes and surrounding mountains.

Muirfield

Muirfield is a privately owned links situated in the golfing village of Gullane, East Lothian, only 30 minutes from the centre of Edinburgh. Muirfield is home to ‘The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers’, the oldest organised golf club in the world and responsible for the original 13 rules of golf.  Originally designed by Old Tom Morris in 1891, further land was secured over the years and the course was adjusted by Harry Colt and Tom Simpson in 1928. Unique in terms of layout for traditional links golf, Muirfield consists of two concentric rings of 9 holes, meaning you never play in the same direction for more than 2 consecutive holes. This is a design that has stood the test of time and it is widely opined that Muirfield provides the fairest examination of championship golf among all the great and historic courses of the British Isles.

Muirfield has hosted the Open Championship on sixteen occasions with Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Nick Faldo (twice), Gary Player and Jack Nicklaus leading the list of world class winners.

The Ailsa Course at Trump Turnberry

TrumpTurnberry is a golf resort located on the rugged South Ayrshire coastline in southwest Scotland. Acquired by Donald Trump in 2014, the resort boasts three links golf courses, a golf academy, and a five-star hotel, making it a popular destination for golfers from around the world.

The iconic Ailsa course at Trump Turnberry has hosted the Open Championship four times and has also played host to other important golf tournaments including the Ricoh  Women’s British Open and the Walker Cup. The course is named after the third Marquess of Ailsa, who owned the land on which it was built. Probably the most scenic of the Open Championship venues, nobody can forget the famous ‘duel in the sun’ played out by Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus in 1977, the first time the course hosted the tournament.

Stimulated by the Trump investment, the Ailsa course was recently remodelled by renowned architect Martin Ebert of Mackenzie & Ebert, a multi-million pound project which improved the course and emphasised the spectacular coastal views and the beauty of the Arran and Ailsa Craig backdrop. The Ailsa links now features five of the world’s best par 3’s and is considered one of the finest golfing destinations in the world, worthy of feature on any bucket list.




Tuesday, 14 June 2016

The Open Championship Returns to Royal Troon



The Open Championship Returns to Royal Troon

The 145th Open takes place from 14th to 17th July at Royal Troon Golf Club in South Ayrshire, southwest of Glasgow. Royal Troon was founded in 1878, initially with only five holes and took its current form in 1888, designed in the traditional out-and-back manner of the Old Course at St Andrews, where last year’s Open Championship was held.

Royal Troon is home to both the longest and shortest holes in Open Championship golf. Regarded as one of the top holes in the world, the par-3 8th hole ("Postage Stamp") measures 123 yards (112m), but its wee green measures a mere 420 square feet (39 m2) and the par-5 6th hole ("Turnberry") measures a lengthy 601 yards (550m).

This is the 9th time Royal Troon will be hosting The Open, the first was in 1923 and the last in 2004. Past Open champions at these famous links include Todd Hamilton, Justin Leonard, Mark Calcavecchia, Tom Watson, Tom Weiskopf, Arnold Palmer, Bobby Locke, and Arthur Havers. The last seven  Opens at Troon have been won by Americans.

The Open is the oldest of the of the four major championships in professional golf and one of the most prestigious tournaments on the golf calendar. The field for the Open is 156, and golfers gain a place in a number of ways. Most of the field is made up of leading players who are given exemptions. Further places are given to players who are successful in The Open Qualifying Series and in Final Qualifying.

The Open Qualifying Series (OQS) consists of 10 events played outside the United Kingdom. from the six major tours. Places are available to the leading players (not otherwise exempt) who finish in a high enough position. A total of 32 places are available.

The Final Qualifying 36-hole tournaments will be played on 28th June 2016 at four courses across Scotland and England. Three qualifying places are available at each location.

Any remaining places are made available to the highest ranked players in the Official World Golf Ranking. 

A number of past champions are also expected in the field - the likes of Ernie Els, Rory McIlroy, Pádraig Harrington, Tiger Woods and Scotland’s own Sandy Lyle and Paul Lawrie, who won in 1985 and 1999 respectively.

The Open is a thing of beauty and every golf fan’s dream to spectate. Let Executive Golf & Leisure take you there with bespoke packages : Accommodations, VIP hospitality, Helicopter , Private Jet and Limousine transfers.

TRUMP TURNBERRY OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP PACKAGE
Enjoy the spectacle of The Open staying at the 5 Star Trump Turnberry Resort, playing golf on the Kintyre and Ailsa Course and indulge in VIP Hospitality at The Open each day for a most memorable golf tour.

LUXURY HELICOPTER PACKAGES - MACHRIHANISH
Stay at Machrihanish on the Kintyre Peninsula, South West Scotland, play golf at Machrihanish Dunes and travel in style to and from The Open on your very own private helicopter taking in the spectacular West Coast scenery on route!

VIP HOSPITALITY
Upgrade your Open Golf experience with a day in the Hospitality village. Enjoy a place to relax and dine where you can watch all the action and network with your colleagues throughout the day.

View all packages here.

If this doesn’t tempt you, perhaps this little video will:



We look forward to seeing you at the 145th Open at Royal Troon next month!




Thursday, 19 May 2016

Get Golfing, Get Healthy


6 health benefits of playing golf

May is National Golf Month and golf clubs across the UK are promoting the game and offering unique golfing experiences in their communities, catering to people at all levels of play. It’s a fine time for beginners to get to grips with the sport. If that’s you, then what are you waiting for? If the grand outfits aren’t swinging it for you, perhaps these proven health benefits of hitting the links will encourage you to pick up a club this summer (it’s also a great reason to give your partner when you’re out golfing for the third time this week!).

1.      Golfing burns calories

According to a report published by the Rose Center for Health and Sports Sciences in 2010, playing an 18-hole round of golf while carrying your clubs or using a pushcart burns a whopping 1440 calories. Playing with a motor cart only burns about 822 calories, but regardless of your preferences here, you’re sure to lose weight and body fat if your golfing goes hand in hand with a balanced and nutritious diet.

2.      It keeps you fit and improves muscle tone

Golfing typically involves a lot of walking, which helps oxygenate and tone the muscles and gives your heart and lungs a good workout. In fact, if you’re walking the distance in a round of golf, you can easily clock over 5 miles. That’s over 10,000 steps and bang on target with the guideline for recommended daily exercise. But walking’s not the only exercise to be gained on the golf course. Swinging heavy clubs around all day in controlled motions is a great workout for your chest, back and forearms. This takes your potential burned calorie count to over 2,000!

3.      Golfing helps reduce stress

It’s no secret that stress is a killer, and it’s particularly harmful to those you are getting on in years. Golf has been proven to reduce stress levels through exercise which releases endorphins (the happiness chemicals) into your body, as well as through the simple act of being outdoors in natural, beautiful and peaceful surroundings. Golfing with good friends is also a well-known upper and will eradicate stress in no times.

4.      Golfing is good for your brain

As your heart rate increases, so does blood flow to the brain which stimulates connections between nerve cells and can delay mental illnesses such as dementia. In addition, the game of golf often requires some strategic thinking when planning a tricky shot, and the simple act of striking the ball fosters hand-eye coordination, keeping the neurons firing and the brain working.

5.      It helps you sleep better

As we already mentioned, a round of golf allows you to get quite a bit of exercise, and as we all know, exercise can tire you out. Your weary but happy body will welcome the well-deserved rest it gets at bedtime and you’ll fall asleep quicker and sleep more soundly thanks to the energy you expended on the golf course. A deep sleep is necessary for your body to regenerate cell and repair any muscles and tissues.


6.      Golfing strengthens friendships

We know what you’re thinking: “how is this a health benefit?”, but trust us, it is. Golf is a social sport and provides a great platform for catching up with friends and making new ones. It’s been documented that spending time with good friends makes us happy, and happiness is good for one’s overall health.

Golf helps us develop a sense of community connectedness, comradery and healthy competition.


Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Our Roundup of the 2016 Masters Championship

Rising star Danny Willett dons the green jacket


A rising star no more, Danny Willett has now officially risen to the top of the golfing food chain after winning the 2016 Masters with a superb five-under-par 67 and a three-shot victory over defending champion, Jordan Speith.

The Masters Tournament is the first major golf championship of the year and is held at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, USA. The tournament has a number of traditions, including, most renowned, the presentation of the green jacket. Since 1949, the Masters champion has been awarded the green jacket which they are permitted to keep for a year, after which it must be returned to the Augusta clubhouse. It was on 10th of April 2016 that defending champion from Texas, Jordan Speith, helped Danny Willett, a vicar’s son from Sheffield, into his first green jacket.

Danny was a crowd favourite from the beginning and in fact, almost missed the masters altogether due to the imminent birth of his son, Zachariah, who by a simple twist of fate, was born 12 days early. He was made only more popular by his brother, PJ Willett’s humorous running commentary on Twitter during the final hours of the tournament.

Having climbed from outside the top 100 to a ranking of 9th in the world (thanks to his Masters win) in less than two years is somewhat remarkable and is a far cry from the youth who used to practice his golf in a sheep pasture near his home in England. While Danny has several victories to his name – the 2007 English Amateur Championship, the 2012 BMW International Open in Germany and two wins on the European Tour in 2015 – few would have predicted that his first major win would come from his second only appearance on the challenging Augusta course.

Danny’s win is a win for European golf. The previous European champion, Spain’s Jose Maria Olazabal took the green jacket 17 years ago in 1999 and the last British victor was 20 years ago in 1996 when Nick Faldo won his third Masters five strokes ahead of runner-up Greg Norman.

Be a part of golfing history and travel with us to Augusta in 2017 for the Masters Tournament to watch Englishman Danny Willett defend his title.