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Episode 50 – PGA Show 2015 and Voyage of Discovery


The inaugural gathering of the wide spectrum of the international golf industry descended on the enormous Orange County Convention centre in Orlando for the last week in January.It was also my first trip to the United States which naturally allowed me to experience the golfing culture from Scotland’s largest international inbound market and one which I found to be very different.

The Visit Scotland stand was home to the largest representation within the travel sector of the show made up of a collective 20+ business ranging from golf tour operators, hotels and golf courses promoting ‘Scotland, The Home of Golf’. Naturally the interest in golf travel to Scotland remained high this year with the forthcoming Open Championship returning to St Andrews in July and the recent success of the 2014 Ryder Cup.

Recounter captured the Visit Scotland Golf Day before the show

Recounter captured the Visit Scotland Golf Day before the show

Away from the convention it was my first trip to the United States, one with much anticipation to meet those within the industry but also understand the golfing culture which I had heard so much about. With no golf planned it so happened that I experienced both ends of the golfing spectrum in Orlando; the private member club of Orange Tree and Winter park a municipal 9 hole course in central Orlando.

Orange Tree is a country club with a well to do membership adjacent to Bayhill and a frequent home to returning PGA Tour players such as Bubba Watson who enjoy the challenge of tight fairways and quick greens.

11th at Orange Tree, Orlando

11th at Orange Tree, Orlando

On arrival the ghastly sight of grey security gates was reminiscent of a prison cell was the first surprise. Such arrivals are fortunately only restricted to a few courses in Scotland, the new course Trump International Scotland along with Muirfield with the rest open to the general public.

Winter Park, recommended by Matt Ginella

Winter Park, recommended by Matt Ginella

From the private to the public we headed to the wonderful 9 holes of Winter Park in central Orlando which proved to be very reminiscent of Scotland. (Only $10!!)

To conclude the trip I ended up on the Golf Channel albeit off air!

Ru on the Golf Channel

Ru on the Golf Channel

The 2016 PGA Show is just too far away..

 

Ru Macdonald

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Stay with us as we continue our winter series profiling Scotland’s best links golf courses you will likely visit on a golf vacation to Scotland in 2015. Subscribe on itunes.

For Scottish golf course reviews including a St Andrews Story section where golfers are asked to share their visit to St Andrews check out co host Graylyn Loomis’ website.

If left with any questions don’t hesitate to contact Ru or Graylyn by emailing question@scottishgolfpodcast.com.

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