Kingsbarns Links in Fife has been declared golfers’ favourite course after winning big at the Scottish Golf Tourism Awards.
The 2018 gala dinner was attended by more than 400 guests from across the sporting scene at Fairmont St Andrews on Thursday.
And as well as taking the award for best experience, which the course has won four times since 2014, Kingsbarns also took the coveted best customer service prize.
There was joy elsewhere in Courier country on the night too, as Perth’s Murrayshall Country House Hotel and Golf Club won the best hotel 21 to 50 rooms award and Fairmont St Andrews, host venue for Scottish Golf Tourism Week 2018, was crowned best hotel over 50 rooms.
The focus stayed firmly on Fife’s east coast throughout the ceremony, with the award for best clubhouse going to St Andrews Links Castle Course and the Dukes Course in St Andrews winning the value for money £50-£100 category.
Gleneagles, which won the best experience award in 2017, also picked up the award for best catering.
Tom Lovering, director of Scottish Golf Tourism Week, said: “Enormous congratulations to Kingsbarns Golf Links, which has once again demonstrated its ability to deliver a consistently exceptional golf experience and has taken our top award for the fourth time.”
Pitlochry Golf Club won the award for best course under £50, Crail Balcome Links took the prize for best course £50 to £100 while Carnoustie Golf Links, host venue for The Open 2018, was chosen as the best course over £100.
There was a second award for Carnoustie on the night, with the special recognition award for services to golf tourism in Scotland being awarded to Pat Sawers, chair of Carnoustie Golf Links, for outstanding service and commitment to the Scottish golf tourism industry.
Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “I’m delighted to see award winners from right across the country, which goes to underline how outstanding the outstanding strength in depth of the Scottish golf tourism product.
“With golf tourism playing a vital part of Scotland’s visitor economy it is vital that our tourism businesses continue to strive to deliver excellent customer service and keep these visitors coming back to Scotland, the Home of Golf, year after year.”
The winners were as follows: Best Hotel (under 20 rooms) – The Old Loans Inn; Best Hotel (21 – 50 rooms) – Murrayshall Country House Hotel; Best Hotel (over 50 rooms) – Fairmont St Andrews; Best Customer Service – Kingsbarns Golf Links; Best Pro Shop – Trump Turnberry; Best Club House – St Andrews Links Castle Course; Best Catering – Gleneagles; Value for Money (under £50) – Fortrose and Rosemarkie; Value for Money (£50-£100) – The Duke’s, St Andrews; Value for Money (over £100) – Trump International Golf Links; Best Course (under £50) – Pitlochry; Best Course (£50-£100) – Crail Balcomie Links; Best Course (over £100) – Carnoustie Golf Links; Best Experience winner – Kingsbarns Golf Links; Special Recognition Award – Pat Sawers, Carnoustie Golf Links.