24 Nov 2017

by Darius Oliver

The developer of a proposed Jack Nicklaus golf course estate south of Aberdeen in Scotland, has announced plans for a unique hotel on the property.

As explained in an online story from The Press and Journal website, developer FM Group have tried for years to renovate and upgrade a 15th-century ruined mansion, but concerns over an important gas pipeline restrict the number of guests able to stay in the building per day. As a consequence of these planning restrictions, an alternate hotel has been proposed that would involve 32 bedrooms built alongside a walled garden.

Additional details can be found via The Press and Journal article, which is light on information about the golf course itself.

With the exception of places like Kingsbarns and Castle Stuart, few tourist golfers visit Scotland to play their modern courses. Selecting a celebrity company like Nicklaus Design, therefore, to create something new and fresh for the country may disappoint the purists, but the market is obviously residential golfers and the Nicklaus name fits nicely onto billboards selling lots in the 1,500-acre estate.

Other Nicklaus courses in the British Isles include the Ryder Cup course at Gleneagles, Mount Juliet in Ireland and Machynys Peninsula in Wales. One hopes that a sprawling estate on nice land in Aberdeenshire might produce something a little more significant.

From The Press and Journal:

Developers have launched plans to build an unusual boutique hotel on the site of the proposed Jack Nicklaus golf course in Aberdeenshire.

Ury House will be the centrepiece of the £80million golf resort featuring a course designed by the legendary US golfer.

But plans previously lodged to renovate the B-listed building, near Stonehaven, into a 35-bedroom hotel were refused after it was deemed too close to the North Sea Forties underground oil pipeline.

The Health and Safety Executive previously warned the council that the 235-mile pipeline that links 85 North Sea oil and gas assets to a processing plant in Grangemouth could pose a “significant hazard” if more than 10 people stayed in the large ruined mansion overnight.

The local council previously granted permission to turn the building into a five bedroom hotel, but developers say they need more rooms to make the project economically viable.

New plans have been submitted this week with a proposed design for a hotel with 32 bedrooms built along the perimeter wall of the walled garden.

The garden stands on the estate outside the pipeline’s 100 metre exclusion zone.

Last night FM Group director Jonathon Milne said that it was “very important” that the new plans get approval, adding: “We really need to get the extra rooms to make the whole development viable. If they get the go ahead, we can start building the golf course and finishing off the hotel and spa. It would mean we could still aim to have the resort open by 2020.


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Scotland, Jack Nicklaus, Design News