Machrihanish Dunes Award: ‘Our investment was in the area as a whole, with the goal of sustainability’

The Village at Machrihanish Dunes has announced that it has won the Scotland Enterprise Award at the Countryside Alliance Awards held at Scottish Parliament at Holyrood. The Enterprise Award is awarded to the business that is inspiring and globally competitive, while contributing to the community and the rural heritage in which it is based.

This award, given to Machrihanish Dunes, with its celebrated links golf course, two recently restored historic hotels and employment of more than 100 people, has now put Machrihanish Dunes in the running for the UK-wide Enterprise Award, to be given on March 13, 2013 at Parliament in London,. This is weeks after the first anniversary of the Ugadale Hotel’s re-opening.

Machrihanish Dunes also recently won runner up in the Golf Inc ‘Development of the Year’ global competition.

David Southworth is President and CEO of Southworth Development, an affiliate of which owns and operates Machrihanish Dunes. Mr Southworth says: ‘Our investment was in the area as a whole, with the goal of sustainability.

”To build a course reminiscent of the way golf began was a start, but we also had to act as a model for future sustainability and retain the picturesque beauty of Machrihanish in the process.

‘We also chose to restore two historic hotels in the area rather than create new ones – because the buildings were such important icons of the area’s social fabric.

‘Finally, we’ve placed great emphasis on our staff training. Without the warmth and professionalism of the staff, we won’t retain visitors, so building that support and those skills for future development is critical.

‘We fell in love with the area at first sight. We think there is a whole world of people who will feel the same way, and who will join us in our work to support and preserve Argyll.’

The vision of the Village at Machrihanish Dunes was to create a world-class seaside resort, including a links golf course, four-star accommodations, dining and other facilities in one of Scotland’s most beautiful and under-visited regions.

‘The course was the first 18-hole course in the UK to earn certification from the Golf Environmental Organization, and was named most ecological course in the world by ABTA in 2012.

‘The course opened in 2009 on a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSi), the first course to be built on the west coast of Scotland in over 100 years.’

This year marks Visit Scotland’s ‘The Year of Natural Scotland’ campaign, celebrating the natural beauty and biodiversity and heritage of Scotland. Golfers can responsibly experience an award-winning course, while knowing the integrity of the landscape will be maintained for years to come.

Machrihanish Dunes Golf Club was ranked as 38 out of 100 links course in Great Britain by National Club Golfer and has been consistently ranked in the Top 100 courses in the UK since its opening.

His Grace, The Duke of Argyll, says: ‘Machrihanish has always been a big draw to golfers looking for that little extra something special. With the development of Machrihanish Dunes and the restoration of The Royal and Ugadale Hotels by Southworth it now has to be on the list of Must Do’s if you are planning a holiday in Scotland.’

Argyll and Bute Council’s Lead Councillor for Environment, Development and Infrastructure, John Semple says: ‘I’d like to congratulate all the staff and management of Machrihanish Dunes for winning this well-deserved award. The business is playing an important role in the re-generation of Kintyre and is now firmly a part of the local community.’

The resort’s two hotels are newly restored historic structures and between them offer a spa and five dining outlets. The Ugadale Hotel, located in Machrihanish near the golf course, earned the 2012 Golf Hotel of the Year Award from the Scottish Hotel Awards. The Ugadale offers 22 luxurious rooms and suites at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, overlooking the famed first tee of neighbouring Machrihanish Golf Club (Ranked No. 40 on National Club Golfer’s list).

The Ugadale is also home to The Kintyre Club restaurant and The Serenity Spa. Just steps away lie The Old Clubhouse Pub and the award-winning, two- bedroom, two-bathroom, Ugadale Cottages, providing luxurious, comfortable and private self-catering accommodation for families, travelling business executives or groups of golfers. Built in 2009, they have received Trip Advisor’s “Certificate of Excellence” for three years running.

The Royal Hotel is a listed historic site, located overlooking picturesque Campbeltown Harbour. The renovations of The Royal included retaining the original stained glass windows as well as the fireplace mantel pieces. The Royal features 23 marvellously-appointed rooms, each with harbour views, and is home to the spirited good times of The Black Sheep Pub and fine-dining of The Harbourview Grille.

As the most ambitious resort development ever created in Argyll, Machrihanish Dunes is hosting visitors from around the globe, as well as a variety of international competitions in 2013 including: Men’s and Ladies’ Champion of Champions Tournaments to be held in April; the Machrihanish Dunes Hickory Open to be held in September, and the 15th Annual International Pairs Competition scheduled for October, when pairs from up to 30 countries will battle for the championship title.

Time to catch the breath and head down Kintyre to Campbeltown and Machrihanish – and the surfers venue at Westport Beach.

Southworth Developments’ contribution to this area and those places has been responsible, engaged and innovative entrepreneurship at the quality end  of the market and at its very best. They deserve every award showered upon them.

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