This year’s exciting evening culminated in Angus Watson, a leisure sales executive at the Fairmont in St Andrews, being named Young Industry Person of the Year, which carried with it an international learning journey. Earlier, Davy Gilchrist of Kingsbarns Golf Links picked up the CaddieMaster of the Year award for the second successive year.
One of the biggest winners on the night was Castle Stuart Golf Links which beat off competition from Kingsbarns and the Old Course in St Andrews to clinch the Golf Course of the Year award. In addition, Mark Parsinen, managing partner at the Highland resort, was honoured with the acclaimed Special Achievement Award.
Following a memorable Open Championship at the Home of Golf, St Andrews also had a successful night with no less than five winners hailing from the Auld Grey Toon, and two others from its outskirts. But as the chairman of GTS pointed out, this year’s winners came from across Scotland.
“It’s been a fantastic year for golf tourism throughout Scotland,” said Nick Hunter. “Scotland has hosted a number of high-profile tour events which have showcased exactly why playing golf here is so special. And despite tough times, our members have upped their game so that once again our facilities have improved and our standards of service have been fine-tuned. The Gold Standard Awards recognise the very best exponents of this process, but I think the golf industry generally should be congratulated for a job well done.”
On hand to meet the winners was two-time major winner Sandy Lyle, who highlighted the importance of the GTS awards. “Playing golf in Scotland is very special indeed,” he said. “And often what makes it special, apart from the terrific courses, are the people who arrange your trip, transport you between venues or meet you at the hotels. In my view, the GTS Gold Standard Awards celebrate the efforts of these individuals who are the golf tourism industry in Scotland.”
In all, 11 awards were handed out on the night, three of which were sponsored by some of the country’s leading businesses. Joining the awards’ host resort, the Macdonald Marine Hotel & Spa in North Berwick, was Arnold Clark Car and Van Rental, Europe’s largest independently owned, family run motor dealer, and the Fairmont St Andrews, which hosted the G20 Summit in November 2009.
The award recipients came from every sector of the golf tourism industry. And the winners are…
GOLF COURSE OF THE YEAR. Nominations for this category were open to any golf course in Scotland that offers tee-times to visitors. And the winner is:
- Castle Stuart Golf Links
- Crail Golfing Society
- Davy Gilchrist, Kingsbarns Golf Links
- Ugadale Cottages, Machrihanish
- Rufflets Country House Hotel, St Andrews
- Fairmont St Andrews
- Links Golf St Andrews
- St Andrews Executive Travel
- Mark Parsinen, Castle Stuart Golf Links
- Angus Watson, Fairmont St Andrews
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