Each of the four “Majors” in golf provide the spectator with a unique experience. There is a good argument that says the Open Championship, held annually on one of nine links courses around the British coastline, is the most unique of all. This year the Open returns to Muirfield, home of the Honorable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, for the first time since Ernie Els won in 2002.
Spectators can expect to witness an event which encapsulates the country. It will be one of the lead news stories as golf is woven through so much of the fabric of Scottish life. Non golfers and golfers alike will pay attention to the happenings at Muirfield. A visitor to Scotland will be hard pressed to find any local who cannot engage in a fairly detailed discussion about the event and their favorite golfers. It is the only “Major” which sells admission tickets on the day, all very democratic and open to all. You will find a festive but respectful and knowledgeable crowd.
One of the many unique aspects of Muirfield is the proximity of Greywalls Hotel to the 10th tee. It is literally across a low stone wall. Greywalls Hotel is one of the many charming and comfortable country house hotels you find around the British Isles. I clearly recall that during earlier times when the Open returned to Muirfield, the guest book at Muirfield was a “who’s who” of the golfing greats of that time; Nicklaus, Trevino, Player, etc. Gaining access to one of the 23 rooms in the hotel was reserved for the elite of the sport. It’s fair to say that in 2013 the elite will have rented large homes for the week as they travel with their sizable entourages of trainers, nannies, stretchers, chefs & mental coaches. Times have indeed changed in that respect. Read more about Greywalls Hotel.
East Lothian, which is the area of Scotland around Edinburgh and onward to the east, is home to a host of great golf. This Google Earth Video Tour gives some sense of the plethora of fine links courses in close proximity to Muirfield, alongside some of the area hotels and other exclusive-use lodgings that PerryGolf clients enjoy. The tour also details some of our suggestions for dining of which in this region of Scotland are terrific.
If nothing else, be sure to add attendance at the Open Championship one year onto your bucket list!
About the Author: Gordon Dalgleish is the Co-Founding Director of PerryGolf, the leading provider of international golf vacations. You can find him on Google+