TRIP PLANNER: James Finegan's Pure Scotland
Where to Play
Carnoustie Golf Links, Championship Course *****
Links Parade, Carnoustie, Angus; 011-44/ 1241-853-789, carnoustiegolflinks.co.uk. Architect: James Braid, 1926. Greens Fee: $205
Duncar Road, Gullane, East Lothian; 011-44/1620-842-123, muirfield.org.uk. Architects: Old Tom Morris, 1891; Harry Colt, 1925. Greens Fee: $254
North Berwick Golf Club, West Links *****
Beach Road, North Berwick, East Lothian; 011-44/1620-895-040, northberwickgolfclub.com. Architect: David Strath, 1878. Greens Fees: $113$141
St. Andrews, Old Course ***** New Course ****1/2 Eden Course ***1/2
St. Andrews, Fife; 011-44/1334-466-666, standrews.org.uk. Architects: Nature (Old); Old Tom Morris, 1895 (New); Harry Colt, 1914 (Eden). Greens Fees: $226 (Old), $107 (New), $64 (Eden)
Crail Golfing Society, Balcomie Links **** Craighead Links ****
Crail, Fife; 011-44/1333-450-686, crailgolfingsociety.co.uk. Architects: Old Tom Morris, 1892 (Balcomie); Gil Hanse, 1998 (Craighead). Greens Fee: $85
Dunbar Golf Club ****
East Links, Dunbar, East Lothian; 011-44/ 1368-862-317, dunbar-golfclub.co.uk. Architect: Old Tom Morris, circa 1850. Greens Fees: $85$104
Golf House Club, Elie ****
Elie, Fife; 011-44/1333-330-301, golf houseclub.org. Architect: Old Tom Morris, 1895. Greens Fees: $104$122
Gullane Golf Club, No. 1 ****
Gullane, East Lothian; 011-44/1620-842-255, gullanegolfclub.com. Architect: Willie Park, 1882. Greens Fees: $160$188
Musselburgh Links, Old Course ***
Balcarres Road, Musselburgh, East Lothian; 011-44/1316-655-438; musselburghold links.co.uk. Architect: Nature. Greens Fee: $17
Where to Stay in St. Andrews
18 Queens Terrace: A B&B with three guest rooms (one with twin bed, two with doubles) in a refined and purely residential neighborhood about a fifteen-minute walk from the Old Course. The sunny drawing room and dining room both feature numerous antiques and appealing artwork, while the carefully maintained garden is a charmer. 18 Queens Terrace; 011-44/1334- 478-849, 18queensterrace.com. Rooms: $122 per night, single occupancy; $151, double occupancy.
Aslar Guest House: This sparkling six-bedroom B&B is on North Street, three blocks from the Old Course. A listed Victorian townhouse dating to 1865, it's perfectly run, charmingly furnished and provides some delightful surprises, like the convertible king-size bed and large bathroom (with fireplace!) in Room 5. Each room has a computer with wireless Internet access (no charge). Among the cooked dishes on the breakfast menu are pork sausages, mushrooms, kippers and smoked salmon. 120 North Street; 011-44/1334-473-460, aslar.com. Rooms: $75 per person, per night.
The Ardgowan Hotel: Also on North Street, the Ardgowan consists of two adjoining Georgian houses set within pretty gardens. With its good restaurant, attractive lounge and comfortable rooms, this is certainly one of the town's best values among the centrally located full-service hotels. 2 Playfair Terrace, North Street; 011-44/1334-472-970, ardgowanhotel.co.uk. Rooms: $188 for two people, per night.
University of St. Andrews' New Hall: Bright, clean, comfortable—in short, a far cry from the college dorms you remember, and only a brisk ten-minute walk to the first tee of the Old Course. Ample parking is available, as is a coffee shop and a bar with informal café-style seating. North Haugh; 011-44/1334-467-000, escapetotranquillity.com. Rooms: $86 per night, single occupancy; $128 per night, double occupancy.
Where to Stay in East Lothian
Blenheim House Hotel: Ten minutes down the coast road in North Berwick, Blenheim House has eleven bedrooms and a solid reputation for catering to golfers. Room 15 is an especially spacious accommodation—it features a double bed and single bed, with a bay window affording uninterrupted views over the beach, harbor and the Firth of Forth. Room 7, not as large, has the same winning view. 14 Westgate, North Berwick; 011-44/1620-892-385. Rooms: $73 per person, per night, double occupancy.
Glebe House: An elegant brick Georgian mansion with a beguiling walled garden, Glebe House doesn't have the Blenheim's views, but its fine furniture and paintings are exceptional. At $75 per person, it is an outstanding value and surely North Berwick's best B&B. Law Road, North Berwick; 011-44/1620-892-608, glebehouse-nb.co.uk. Rooms: $75 per person, per night, double occupancy.
The Golf Inn: The fourteen rooms are slightly on the small side at the ivy-clad Golf Inn in Gullane, but they are spruce, cheerful and up-to-date with fixtures and furnishings. Main Street, Gullane; 011-44/1620-843-259, golfinn.co.uk. Rooms: $104 per night, single occupancy; $85, double occupancy.