The New King of Turnberry
First it was the hotel. Then it was the world-famous Ailsa. And now it is the resort’s No.2 course, formerly the Kintyre.
Since acquiring Turnberry in 2014, President Trump has not been shy of making expensive upgrades to his new purchase, and after the unconditional success of the Ailsa and hotel revamps, the Kintyre – now known as the King Robert the Bruce, by virtue of the legendary Scot being born in Turnberry Castle – is poised to follow suit after opening in July.
Martin Ebert, the architect who impressively overhauled
the Ailsa, was again handed the task of improving the KRTB, and it was a poignant project for one half of the Mackenzie & Ebert firm.
Ebert worked for Donald Steel on the Kintyre when it was created in 2000, so was revisiting land he knew very well, albeit at a very different point in his career. No longer an understudy to Steel, he is now the architect the R&A seeks advice from for most of its Open venues.
Ebert has modified every hole to some degree, but his key work centres around the sequencing (8th to 11th) on top of Bain’s Hill – which offer views arguably as good as any on the site – and the par 5s.
Of the three-shot holes, the 1st has a split fairway with the second shot divided by central bunkers, the 8th and 11th are brand new with lighthouse and coastal backdrops, and the 18th is now extremely well protected.
The highlight, however, might well be the 9th, a dramatic affair played across a rocky chasm and a sandy waste area, while the 10th is a new par 3 heading inland.