The Old Courses Hotel, St Andrews
Over the past two years, Old Course Hotel, Golf Resort & Spa underwent a multi-million pound refurbishment, including the introduction of a penthouse, new bedrooms and refurbished event spaces, as well as a new destination restaurant and bar, Swilcan Loft, which launched at early fall 2021.
The hotel now has 175 rooms, with the introduction of a third floor in the ‘Champions’ wing and the addition of 31 new rooms, overlooking the Old Course.
This five-star property in the heart of St Andrews (the birthplace of golf) offers stunning views of the Fife coastline. The hotel is located on an 18-hole championship golf course, the Old Course, which is the oldest course in the world, and offers guests access to the championship Duke’s Course.
The luxury resort also includes a Kohler Waters spa and fitness center, six restaurants and bars, and wedding and event spaces. The spa covers 2,300 m² and includes 13 treatment rooms, a 20 m swimming pool, hydrotherapy pool, sauna, steam room and plunge pool, as well as a gym and fitness center .
The hotel driver arrived promptly at 10am and we continued our journey from Glasgow to St Andrew’s, it was an enjoyable trip in the hotel’s luxury vehicle. Chris the concierge was lovely company and even though I pushed and pushed he didn’t give up the names of famous hotel guests. Well, it was worth a try. On arrival we were taken to the Jigger Inn for a hearty pub lunch. This historic building dates back to the 1850s when it was the station master’s lodge. Today, The Jigger Inn is home to golf memorabilia, crackling log fires, home-cooked food and a superb selection of Scottish ales. The Jigger is frequented by locals and hotel guests. It has all the usual food you would expect from a pub menu, fish and chips, sandwiches, soups etc. The owner is there to serve punters and the atmosphere is lively and boisterous. A great start to the St Andrews trip.
We spent an afternoon touring the city with our superb guide Jan. What Jan doesn’t know about St Andrews you can stick on the back of a postage stamp. Although we have been to the city several times, we have never taken a guided tour. We found it super interesting, and Jan made sure it wasn’t boring and just full of trivial facts. She was adorable and we will not hesitate to recommend her services.
On our first evening at the hotel, we had reservations at the hotel restaurant. The interior is very minimalistic and bright, I was glad the kids weren’t with me as it looked too pristine for kids hanging around. The light fixtures and in particular the magnificent chandelier are fascinating. And the food is amazing. Dinner focuses on the finest Scottish seafood and grills – oysters, lobsters, langoustines, scallops and some fine Black Isle steaks, along with other healthy favourites. The menu offers a large choice of starters, main courses and desserts, all of the highest quality. Being a huge seafood fan, I was in my element and the chef did not disappoint, from the scallop starter to my main course the whole lobster and even for the finish the carefully selected local Scottish cheeses, dinner was a truly memorable treat for the taste buds. The service and food are top notch and we will definitely be back.
The hotel also manages the Hamilton Grand, which features 26 private residences and apartments of distinction with two, three, and four bedrooms ranging in size from 1,133 to 2,780 square feet. Due to the growing popularity of golf in the late 1800s, Thomas Hamilton realized the dream of creating Scotland’s most luxurious hotel. He opened the 100-room Grand Hotel in 1895 – the first hotel in Scotland to have hot and cold running water in every room, and the first with a lift. The hotel was built on the site of Union Parlous, the very first golfers club. When it first opened, it wowed and wowed visitors. Royalty, politicians, presidents, early Hollywood stars and many Open champions have all called the Grand home from its opening through the first half of the 20th century.
The fortunes of the property changed when it was transformed from a home for pilots during the Second World War to another conversion into student accommodation for the University of St Andrews. In the early 2000s, it fell into disuse. Kohler Co. purchased it in 2005 and began renovations in 2009. Kohler Co. sensitively restored this grand building to its former grandeur, and we were lucky enough to have a curious little tour. I was looking forward to seeing the penthouse yet to be unveiled.
We were among the first to see the truly exquisite Penthouse; the views alone are to die for, and it’s a large, spacious and opulent apartment. Kohler Co has done a magnificent job of taking the best that Hamilton Grand had to offer and combining it with a new, modern twist.
The building now has a reception hall and concierge, a private residents’ lounge and a roof terrace with stunning views of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, the Old Course, the West Sands and the sea.
Overlooking the 1st and 18th holes of the famous Old Course, the Hamilton Grand apartments offer luxury living as well as the most sought-after address in the home of golf. Reside at Hamilton Grand offers many five-star services such as a 24-hour butler, spectacular access to the sixth-floor rooftop terrace, complimentary access to the award-winning Kohler Waters Spa, and other dining and entertainment privileges. golf course accessible via the Old Course Hotel, Resort and Golf Spa.
Two-, three- and four-bedroom private residences range from £1.3million to £7million – but golf enthusiasts will also get a subscription to Duke’s Course, a championship course in the hills above St Andrews, which belongs to the Old Course. Hotel, at an additional cost.
A 24-hour team of butlers offer the warmest Scottish hospitality during your stay here and can help you with golf tee times and dinner reservations.
St. Andrews is an iconic destination and one of Scotland’s oldest towns dating from the 12th century to St Andrews Cathedral, which was the center of Christianity in Scotland for hundreds of years and a destination of pilgrimage in medieval times. It is also home to Scotland’s oldest university, which is the third oldest in Britain, and a popular seaside resort with the award-winning West Sands beach.
Often called the “Mecca of golf” for the great champions as well as for the simple enthusiast. A golf bucket list is not complete without the St Andrews experience; after all, this is where golf began. There are more golf courses per person in Scotland than anywhere else in the world, and St Andrews is home to 11 in total – 7 Championship class – a world-renowned golf academy, as well as the Royal and Ancient Golf Club which sets the rules of golf around the world.
St Andrews is simply stunning, and we can’t wait to return, and no trip to St Andrew is complete without a stay at the Old Courses Hotel, where all your needs will be anticipated and met.