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ICYMI: Castle Stuart Golf Links – between Inverness and Nairn – revives plans for expansion

By Staff Reporter

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Castle Stuart Golf Links...Picture: Gair Fraser. Image No. 034639.
Castle Stuart Golf Links...Picture: Gair Fraser. Image No. 034639.

A NEW championship golf course with a hotel and holiday lodges is still in the pipeline for Castle Stuart.

Owners of the course near Nairn, which has played host to the Scottish Open four times, have submitted an application to renew planning permission for a second course at the site.

Plans had already been approved by Highland Council in 2016, with a view to completing the extension by 2020.

The proposals also had the support of US golfing great Arnold Palmer, who at the time had a business empire in golf course design and leisurewear worth more than $700m.

He visited Castle Stuart in 2015 to survey the terrain and meet course staff, aiming to put his stamp on what he envisaged the new course should look like, but died in 2016.

This week Stuart McColm, general manager of Castle Stuart Golf Links, confirmed the club was aiming to get the development back on track.

“The renewal of the planning application is a procedural requirement and demonstrates our continuing commitment to building a second world-class golf course at Castle Stuart,” he said.

“Due to a number of factors outwith our control, the development has not proceeded in line with our original timescale.

“However, we continue to be in discussions with a number of potential investors, including the Arnold Palmer Group, regarding a second championship course and accommodation at Castle Stuart.”

As well as the new course, the plans include the creation of a hotel and lodges to complement the existing championship links.

The site for the new course occupies land to the south west of the existing links course. It will start to the south of the existing practice range, where a small additional clubhouse – as well as a 60-bedroom lodge – are planned.

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