Craigie Hill Golf Club
For the last 49 years I have loved playing golf at “ The Hill “ – which Craigie Hill Golf Club is affectionately known as throughout Perthshire : http://www.craigiehill.co.uk/course-overview.php
On Saturday past I was delighted to take part in the club’s Prizegiving Texas Scramble. The invitation was from 2 of my greatest golfing buddies – Giddy (Iain) Simpson and Alan BBP Wilson ( Britain’s Best Putter – he was in the final a few years back) – and it was an extra special day for me as my son Sam (who is a PGA assistant golf pro – soon to be qualified) was also invited to make up our team. The photo shows all 4 of the team on the 8th tee at The Hill ( I’m the shadow) on a beautiful sunny day – a little chilly of course – but this was Scotland in November. The Club Captain Athole McDonald and his Board at Craigie Hill are to be congratulated on running a wonderful day as there were 21 teams taking part and it was great to see a full clubhouse after the shotgun round and you could tell everyone was having a great time and clearly spending at the bar – after all what are Saturdays for !! Golf in Scotland as in many other countries has been going through well documented challenges especially with club memberships – but with the energy and skill of the guys currently running things at Craigie Hill I’d like to think the game can turn a corner and see things start to thrive once more in the Home of Golf – maybe the folks at Scottish Golf Ltd should pay a visit to Craigie Hill to see how a golf club should be run! For visitors looking for a game on a golf course with some of the best views in Scotland look no further than Craigie Hill – the scenes from some parts of the golf course are truly amazing. And don’t worry about the hills – they do have buggies for hire at The Hill. And lastly to our team on the day – a resounding thanks for one of the best rounds I can remember in a long time – especially on the greens – 16 single putts is some kind of record for us – sorry to our fellow competitors if they heard too much “ whooping and hollering” but it was hard to contain ourselves as the putts kept dropping.
Peter Craigon, MD, Morton Golf Holidays – Published on November 20, 2017
Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square Hotel
On Friday last week I attended a trade association meeting in Edinburgh. The venue for the meeting was perhaps a little more poignant for me than for others – you see we were in the former Roxburghe Hotel in the centre of Edinburgh which is where Fiona and I had our wedding reception in 1989 – honestly it seems like yesterday! The hotel was one of Edinburgh’s iconic places to stay or attend a function and I was delighted to see it has now undergone a transformation and complete re-development and is now called the Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square Hotel. From the front of the building which looks onto Charlotte Square it appears to be just like many of the other wonderful Georgian town houses for which Edinburgh’s new town is so famous. However amazingly this is now a very cosmopolitan up market 200 bedroom hotel which quite frankly rivals any of the other top quality hotels in the city. GM Marcello Ventisei showed us round and it was clear how passionate he is about this wonderful hotel – stylish bedrooms, creative and innovative public areas and a spa and pool to be opened in the Spring of 2018. https://www.phcompany.com/principal/edinburgh-charlotte-square/gallery/
We will certainly be using the Principal Charlotte Square for our clients who wish to enjoy all that is great about staying in Edinburgh when they come one of our wonder golfing packages. Coming to Scotland with Morton Golf Holidays is all about creating lasting memories and experiences and by staying in The Principal Edinburgh Charlotte Square this will certainly get you off to a wonderful start.
Peter Craigon, MD, Morton Golf Holidays – Published on November 13, 2017
Last week our Associate Director Donald McLeod and our great golf buddy Alan Wilson re-lived their youth when the played at North Berwick in an event put on by the club and jointly hosted by the Marine Hotel. A big thank from the lads to Chris Spencer of the host club and to Helen Butler and Jeff Mills from Macdonald Hotels. You see both Donald and Alan played North Berwick in the 1970s when the Scottish Boys Championship was played on that course every year. It really is one of Scotland’s most iconic links courses and as kids we were fortunate indeed to travel to East Lothian to play in the championship. Although none of us won the event playing round such a brilliant course at a young age was a fantastic introduction to us all to links golf – some may say proper golf. North Berwick has a long history of producing great players such as Ben Sayers and hosting amazing events. In addition to the aforementioned Scottish Boys it has seen Final Qualifying for The Open take place over these links on a number of occasions (Trevor Immelman had the lowest score in 2002) and indeed in 2010 it co-hosted The Amateur Championship with Muirfield. Another claim to fame for North Berwick is that their head pro David Huish lead The Open at Carnoustie in 1975 after 2 rounds – imagine a club pro leading the greatest Major in the world today even at any stage in the event. But such was David’s skills on the links there he was ahead of the leading players in the world at the half way stage ( including Nicklaus, Watson, Miller etc). It is also great to see that David’s son Martyn has carried on the family tradition and took over as head pro from Dad a number of years ago. Over the years we have been delighted to send many hundreds of golfers to North Berwick and the reasons are simple – firstly I believe this truly is amongst the very best links courses anywhere in the world and secondly on a regular basis our clients place North Berwick as their favourite course when they have come to Scotland on one of our packages. What is your opinion of North Berwick – I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Peter Craigon, MD, Morton Golf Holidays – Published on November 7, 2017
This week Fiona and I were invited to the most wonderful dinner at Greywalls Hotel which overlooks one of the world’s top golf courses! The dinner was a magnificent affair as it was hosted by the famous wine supplier Justerini & Brooks and we were privileged indeed to have a wine tasting conducted throughout the evening by Emeline Borie whose family owns Chateau Grand-Puy-Lacoste which is one of the oldest properties in the Medoc. In a previous life I worked in the drinks industry for many years so have attended numerous tastings but I have seldom come across anyone as passionate and knowledgeable about their product as Emiline – of course it did help in a significant way that we were tasting some of the best wines anywhere in the world!! But she gave a wonderful insight to each of the wines so a big thank you to Emeline – she travels the world to spread the word and conduct tastings with her families wonderful wines – as I write this she is now in Mexico for a few days before heading to Bolivia ! A huge thanks also to Greywalls – we have been sending our clients there since we took over Morton Golf Holidays and the way we were looked after by everyone was absolutely top notch – a truly 5 star experience in what has to be one of the very best country house hotels in Britain. Greywalls is unique and was designed by the celebrated Edwardian architect Sir Edwin Lutyens as a ‘dignified holiday home’. It was built in 1901 and still retains the charm and character for which it is renowned.
Location does of course help – I took the above photo from our bedroom window – who can tell me which hole this is and on which world famous golf course?
Peter Craigon, MD, Morton Golf Holidays – Published on October 31, 2017
Scottish Golf Tourism Week at Turnberry
This week I attended the Scottish Golf Tourism Week at Turnberry and you can see from the photo how magnificent the place was looking. This photo was taken from the hotel looking down onto the 18th green of the Ailsa Course and you can see Ailsa Craig in the background on the horizon. The SGTW is a pretty neat way for a buyer such as me to get round a number of potential new trade partners to further enhance the golf packages we offer to our clients. 2018 will see the 30th year of trading for Morton Golf Holidays and it will be the 15th year since Fiona and I took over the business and even at this stage it looks like it is going to be a record year. We were delighted to be made an “ Authorised Provider” of Old Course packages by the St Andrews Links Trust back in March this year which is wonderful news as this gives us an even greater opportunity to guarantee our clients will play the Old Course. By being able to add iconic courses such as Turnberry Ailsa, Royal Troon, Carnoustie, Kingsbarns, Gleneagles, Royal Dornoch and Castle Stuart and many more to our itineraries it is little wonder that Morton Golf Holidays business is going from strength to strength each year. We look forward to hearing from you very soon and we can guarantee you and your group will have a memorable golf trip to Scotland.
Peter Craigon, MD, Morton Golf Holidays – Published on October 27, 2017
Carnoustie Golf Club – I was privileged yesterday to be give a conducted tour of the new Heritage Wall and exhibition by Captain Bill Thompson. As well as Bill’s expert tour we were also joined by Donald Ford who has just written a fantastic book about the history of this unique golf club..read more
“Why learning as a youngster is so important to the future of golf”
How many of the readers have played at Auchterarder Golf Club? I would bet most of you have played at Gleneagles – but perhaps not it’s older cousin. In fact Auchterarder GC pre-dates the 2 original courses at Gleneagles by nearly 30 years. I was proud to have been a member at Auchterarder for around 3 decades having learned to play golf there when it was still a wee 9 hole course back in the 1960s. In those days the junior subscription for a year was 10 shillings (50p in today’s money) and the Gents annual fee was £4 2s 6d – which is around the price of a pint these days. We were incredibly lucky as junior golfers ..read more..
Portugal – March 2017 – by Peter Craigon, Morton Golf Holidays
Fiona and I have just returned from the type of high end and top class service holiday which we have been supplying for our clients for the last 13 years. The difference with this trip was that it was in Portugal rather than the wondrous experiences our clients have when they come to Scotland or Ireland ( or England or Wales )!
As we have such an extensive and yet loyal client base which has been built up over years of providing top class service we are often asked which other destinations we do. So it was not too onerous a task to arrange the type of high end trip for ourselves we normally deliver to our clients. And I must say..read more
Scotscraig Golf Club – 200 years old this year!
One of the truly great Scottish golf courses Scotscraig is steeped in history and this year it is celebrating its 200th anniversary.
Today I was delighted to play at Scotscraig with in their annual..read more..
Gullane No 1 Course is one of the best links courses in the world
and yesterday I was delighted to play it as a guest of long time member and champion Lindsay Gordon. Lindsay was partnered by another member of over 10 years standing, Alastair Taylor whilst my partner was my life-long golfing buddy and friend Iain (Giddy) Simpson who is ..read more..
The Renaissance Club, East Lothian, Scotland
I was lucky enough yesterday to spend a day at the Renaissance Club which is a wonderful Tom Doak designed links course just over the fence from Muirfield..read more..
Prestwick – Should be on everyone’s MUST play list
Everything about the place just oozes “class“ – from the history of the golf course and the clubhouse to the wonderful welcome you will receive when you play there it really is one of the best places in the world to play golf..read more..
Castle Stuart Golf Links – It is a MUST play when you visit Scotland
Last week I had the absolute pleasure of spending a couple of days at Castle Stuart on an early season mini-tour with 3 of my great golfing buddies..read more..
Peter Craigon from Caddie to Golf Tour Operator
Peter Craigon the owner of the long established golf tour operator Morton Golf Holidays attended the SIGTOA meeting at Gleneagles today. Every time he visits Gleneagles whether to see clients, have meetings with the management team or occasionally to play he is reminded of when he was a caddie there in the 1970s. “ That was a great time in my life read more..
Remember, light and shadow never stand still
I’d be lying if I said I turned up to work this morning with quaffed hair, a groomed beard, a pair of high tops and skinny jeans, but we’re aware in business that we have to move with the times. In the fashion stakes, I might not be 2016, but I firmly believe that the key to business is not standing still. read more..
The Best Customer Service
It’s quite a statement, but should we all vie for it or should it simply be expected?
Perhaps it’s because we are at the PGA Show in Orlando this week, but the USA (North America) does a lot of customer service right! Some might argue it’s forced, others might say it’s for tips,whilst we would say it doesn’t matter it makes for a great customer experience. read more..
My 10 best golf books for Christmas
This is a short pre-Christmas blog to help you choose a last-minute gift for Christmas. I am proud to admit that I am a golf book expert, having read over 600 read more..
The Solheim Cup comes to Scotland
So, there were 10 possible venues in the first instance. Then, it became a straight fight between Bro Hof Slott in Sweden and our own beloved Gleneagles in Perthshire. And, as you will probably know, the Solheim Cup will come to Scotland in 2019. read more..
Golf numbers into Scotland are taking off!
Here at Morton Golf we promote the best golf in the world, whether it is Scotland, Ireland, England or Wales. We are in the fortunate position that golfers want to visit the UK and Ireland. read more..