The Old Course Hotel in St Andrews is the town’s most luxurious accommodation option and is certainly one of Scotland’s most celebrated luxury hotels. Standing proudly on the 17th fairway of the Old Course Golf Course. The hotel is a golfing mecca, but thanks to its multi million pound Kohler Waters Spa and outstanding dining options it offers the perfect luxury hotel for both golfers and non-golfers as TLE discovered on a recent mini break. Read on to discover more about the hotel.
Background and Concept
Big and balsey is how I would describe the hotel from the outside, you can’t miss it when you first drive into St Andrews. Built in the 60’s on what was an old railway station. Interiors are classically elegant, throughout the property, with French designer Jacques Gaercia having designed many of the hotels suites.
The hotel has breathtaking views of the famous Road Hole and the closing Tom Morris 18th hole as well as of the tiny stone Swilcan Bridge, where all the golfing champions have posed for photographs. The view from the hotel also takes in beautiful West Sands beach, the Royal and Ancient golf club and the town beyond.
In 2014 American billionaire Herb Kohler bought the hotel and as you would expect from someone who is such a passionate golfer the hotel is extremely well looked after and has just gone through a multimillion pound refurbishment, including a new ball proof roof, to stop stray golf balls from smashing the tiles.
Herb also being from the Kohler family means the hotel includes one amazing spa and the only Kohler Waters Spa which has also benefitted from a massive upgrade and expansion and is the only Kohler Waters Spa outside of the USA, more on this later on!
The hotel includes multiple drinking and dining options ranging from more informal dining in the Sands Grill to Fine Dining up in the Road Hole Restaurant. The hotel also includes a pub, the Jigger IN serving a range of home cooking and after a day of golf, the Dukes Clubhouse has a great Scottish menu to try out.
If you need a new timepiece or ring, there is even a Mapin and Webb in the hotel.
Location, location, location, The Old Course Hotel has one of the most enviable golfing views in the world and you really are in the heart of it at the Old Course Hotel with 11 golf courses in and around the property.
To me, St Andrews doesn’t need any introduction, having visited many times as a child. The town is far more than just the home of golf, it is one of Scotland’s most beautiful historic towns, home to a first class university, great shopping and restaurants as well as many cultural and leisure attractions within an easy drive, I love the town.
The hotel is large with 144 rooms, many offering views out to the Old Course. 35 Suites were designed by interior designer Jacques Garcia and come in various suite categories ranging from Old Course Suites directly above the 17th Green, to Eden Suites, more contemporary feeling Fairway Suites, Deluxe Suites and finally the Royal & Ancient Suite.
We were in room 234 an Old Course Suite which has one of the most enviable views out to the Old Course. Old Course Suites are spread across two rooms, enter in via the lounge and walk up to the suites balcony and writing desk and then the other side of the suite is the bedroom and connects with the bathroom (of which the suite has two).
Interiors are by Jacques Garcia, they are warm and cosy, Jaques signature stripes are employed on the wallpaper, while rich bed fabrics, silk curtains and dark wood furniture complete the look.
The bathroom includes a large walk in rain shower as well as bath for two which cab also become a Jacuzzi.
The hotel has the only Kohlers Water Spa outside the US, which is open to guests. They offer a wide range of spa treatments and experiences (I would highly recommend a massage!). The Kohler Water Spa complex includes a 20m indoor swimming pool, hydrotherapy pool for therapeutic bathing, steam room for muscular relaxation and detoxification, experience showers, ice fountain, cold plunge pool and a Finnish sauna along with a rooftop garden with hot tub (crazy for Scotland’s climate – but it works!).
You can read our full review of the Kohler Waters Spa here
Food and Drink
During our stay we dined in the Road Hole Restaurant, located on the 4th Floor. This 3 AA Rosette restaurant commands incredible views with its floor to ceiling windows across two sides of the restaurant.
The menu offers a range of classical dishes using only the finest Scottish produce. I oped for the smoked salmon to start with while my dining partner went for the crab salad. For mains I chose the steak and my partner went for the venison, all incredible dishes, and with a view to die for, this is the perfect setting for a romantic meal for two.
If you are looking for a nightcap after dinner the Road Hole Bar on the same floor boasts more that 250 whiskies as well as a comprehensive cocktail menu.
If you are not dining in the Road Hole Restaurant you can still experience the view as breakfast is served there. Breakfast has a large continental buffet, as well as a range of hot items and eggs can be cooked to your liking.
So I will never be a golfer, but I might have been converted slightly. The Old Course Hotel is a slice of classical luxury and really the only postcode to be staying at when you visit St Andrews. Kohler Waters Spa experiences can be incorporated into your stay as well as booked as day experiences, check the hotel’s website for current spa offers.
Address: Old Station Rd, St Andrews