Friday, 10 June 2011

Intimate Music Venues in Scotland - Part One

Of course it's great that Scotland has so many wonderfully busy rock festivals and we're sure that Rock Ness will be the traditional success again this weekend that it has always been but if thousands of bodies writhing around in mud is not (always) your scene then there are still wonderfully eclectic venues across Scotland with some surprisingly powerful live lists over the summer.

You could do worse for instance in looking at The Inn at Lathones near St Andrews in Fife.

They have created over the past few years a wonderful venue that attracts some of the very best musicians for an intimate evening of live music. Tie it up with some great food and accommodation and the chance to meet the artistes after the gig and it all adds up to a truly memorable experience.

The gallery below features just some of the memorabilia in the Stables itself - for a list of future gigs including the annual Fifestock event visit the Inn at Lathones website where you can also reserve your rooms online

Glenmorangie Golf Breaks in the North Highlands

If you actually needed another reason to golf in Scotland we've found one!

Whisky distiller Glenmorangie has joined up with some of Scotland's top golf courses to reward players that finish with an eagle on the eighteenth.Golfers who card a two under par score at the last hole at Gleneagles, Fairmont St Andrews or Royal Dornoch will receive a bottle of Glenmorangie 18 Years Old!

Leanne Banks, Marketing Manager for Glenmorangie said “Scoring two under par on the 18th hole is an unforgettable achievement.  We hope celebrating this accomplishment with friends over a bottle of Glenmorangie 18 Years Old will make it even more memorable.”

Glenmorangie 18 Years Old is distilled in Scotland’s tallest malt stills and specially aged in the finest ex-bourbon and Oloroso sherry casks. The result is a whisky noted for smoothness.“The winning combination of bourbon and sherry casks gives Glenmorangie 18 Years Old an intriguing balance of sweet dried fruit, melting honey and nuttiness.” commented Dr Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s Head of Distilling & Whisky Creation."

If you're up in the North Highlands playing Dornoch you really have to spend not only some time at the wonderful Glenmorangie Distillery and Visitor Centre but also  playing some of the areas courses that complement the links at Royal Dornoch so well. Within a short drive of Dornoch are three tremendous layouts - Brora, Golspie and Tain and together with Dornoch they last year got together to create the Dornoch Firth Golf Pass. This gives the golfer the opportunity to play four fantastic courses and save themselves some money at the time. Visit Dornoch Firth Golf to find out more.

And if you're looking for some accommodation whilst you're there what about trying the Royal Golf Hotel in Dornoch or The Royal Marine Hotel and Apartments in Brora. These two superb properties lie adjacent to the golf courses in their towns and offer quality four star Highlands hospitality.

You can check availability and book online at either hotel with the links above and you'll always find their best rates online at either their website or on their Facebook pages where you can also book online. Royal Marine Facebook or Royal Golf Facebook

Friday, 3 June 2011

Dundonald Games Golf Links Swings into Action

Entries are now being accepted for the inaugural Dundonald Games Links Golf Day. This unique eighteen hole handicap stableford event is open to both ladies and gents and will be played over the magnificent Dundonald Links golf course in Ayrshire on the west coast of Scotland just 24 hours ahead of the annual Dundonald Games on Friday 5th of August.

A website specifically for the event has been created by joint sponsors Plan B and visitors can book their accommodation online courtesy of Bookasssist.

Entry forms can be downloaded or you can go reserve your fourball online and pay by Cheque or even PayPal.

For those who just want to play great Ayrshire golf you could hardly do better than play 18 holes over the magnificent Kyle Phillips layout at Dundonald. The course is a wonderful challenge but remains a fair test of all golfing abilities with fast, three club greens, some wonderul pot bunkers, an abundance of dunes and some of the best laid out holes in Scotland.

The day is about enjoyment and added to the golf you will have access to the practice area and free range balls as well as Nearest the Pin, Longest Drive and the handicap stableford event - if you don't have an official handicap there are limited spaces available just to enjoy the course.

Entry is currently strictly limited to 60 golfers and it is sure to be subscribed very quickly so don’t hesitate to get your application in. You can reserve a single or a discounted fourball and pay by debit or credit card.


And the Kilted Part?
Well first off it’s not obligatory but we thought that given that it’s an official part of the Annual Dundonald Games week and the day before the games itself we’d add a little bit of fun and offer players the opportunity to compete in their kilt with a special commemorative Targe being presented to the winner of, we believe, Scotland's very first Kilted Golf Classic.

We look forward to welcoming you to both the Links and the Games and perhaps an extended stay in the Ayrshire area.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

East of Scotland Regions Launch New Products

A package between two of the East of Scotland's four golfing regions promises to be a sure hit for many visiting golfers. This twin centre package offers an unforgettable experience for golfers to follow in the footsteps of golfing heroes in golf's historic heartland - home to many of the world's oldest and most spectacular courses.

Stay two nights at the award winning Kilspindie House Hotel, Aberlady, in the heart of East Lothian and play one round over Longniddry Golf Course, a unique combination of woodland and links, and Kilspindie Golf Course, a traditional Scottish links course.

Move on to Carnoustie Country with a two night stay in the 4 star Carnoustie Golf Hotel and play a choice of two of the 16 courses which participate in the Carnoustie Country Golf Pass - from links to heathland.

All for just £320 per person.

Please note that supplements will apply to play the North Berwick or Carnoustie Championship courses.

To book a package or to find out more, please contact on email Bob Gunning, General Manager & Company Secretary, Longniddry Golf Club Limited or by telephone on + 44 (0) 1875 852141

Edinburgh Tattoo VIP Seating

Whilst we're in an Edinburgh frame of mind, we had a wee look at the YouTube channel for The Edinburgh Tattoo and whilst there's a whole load of great stuff on there the techy side is us really liked the wee fly through (or walk through really) to showcase the new VIP seating for this year's event. Really cool and the good news if you're one of the millions who have not been successful in your bid for London 2012 Olympic tickets you can still reserve a seat - VIP or otherwise - for this years Edinburgh Tattoo on the official website tickets page

A Trip Around Holyrood Abbey Edinburgh

Bit of a coincidence that I was chatting to The Royal Yacht Brittania's Chief Executive Bob Downie at a tourism event this week about the value of Royal Tourism when one of Visitscotland's regular newsletters dropped into my inbox featuring their attraction of the week - Holyrood Palace.

Couple of things jumped out at me was the realisation (and perhaps the political juxtaposition too!) of the importance of the Royal Family to Scottish tourism and how it has never jumped out at me as something that is very heavily promoted in Edinburgh. Scottish history for sure but the UK stuff just seems to happen. Anyway that was the less important lesson learned. What I did not know but should have is that the video that is embedded on the VisitScotland page about Holyrood and seen below is from the Royal Channel complete with the wee By Appointment logo!!

So I'm going to trawl through the Royal Channel and over the next few weeks compile a wee list of Scottish related videos that may be of interest to visitors and tourism providers alike. Embedding Royal videos on your site? May not get a knighthood but a couple of extra bed nights or visitors would be helpful. I think we may even get in touch with the team at The Royal Yacht and create a special Scotland's For Me Royal Edinburgh page!

Have a wee look around Holyrood Abbey with the warden below.

Harry Potter Train Journeys from Fort William!

Whilst we're in the Fort William area highlighting the Mountain Bike World Cup we thought it worth mentioning a couple of other things in the area indclduing the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of Harry Potter.

Movies have always played a key part in promoting a destination and you can jump on the same route used by the Hogwarts Express.

West Coast Railways, operators of ‘The Jacobite’, provided the steam engine and carriages for the 'Hogwarts Express' as seen in the 'Harry Potter' films including ‘The Philosopher’s Stone’ and others in this wonderful series of films.

Some of the carriages of ‘The Jacobite’ are those used in the ‘Harry Potter’ films. So, you can take the kids and travel to Mallaig along the line used in the films, see the famous Glenfinnan viaduct, an unmistakeable landmark for all Harry Potter fans. It’s a great day out for all the family.

Find out more about the Jacobite and West Coast Railways and if you're looking for accommodation in the area what about trying out the Ballachulish Hotel and The Isles of Glencoe both perfectly located just south of Fort William

Downhill Super Heroes Head For Fort William

In the West Highlands this weekend? Then you have to try and witness The Mountain Bike World Cup at Fort William from the 4th to the 5th of June. According to the website

"The Superheroes of Downhill and 4X don’t wear their pants over lycra. They weren’t born in a galactic supernova or involved in a lab explosion that generated life-changing forces.
But they can fly, oh boy, can they fly.

When it comes to getting down one of Britain’s highest mountains in superquick time there is none faster than the international superheroes of Downhill and 4X mountain biking. They’ll all be heading to Fort William in search of glory on the toughest courses in the world, ready to prove their superstar status in front of thousands of ecstatic fans.
How do they manage to race at such speeds down what is little more than a boulder-strewn elevator-shaft? Come and discover their secret in June and join the fans celebrating the return of the Downhill Superheroes.
You’ll believe men (and women) can fly."

Watch these guys fly all weekend and to find out more visit the Fort William World Cup website