Work at Nicklaus golf course at Ury well under way

26 September 2022

Work is well underway to deliver a Jack Nicklaus-designed signature championship golf course at the spectacular Ury Estate, located outside Stonehaven.

The 18-hole parkland course will be the headline attraction of a new Nicklaus-branded real estate community, the first residential golf community in Europe to be branded with the Jack Nicklaus name.

Overall development of Ury Estate, which includes the stunning Ury Castle as its centrepiece, is being undertaken by award-winning developer, the FM Group.

Designed by Nicklaus Design, the world’s acknowledged leader in golf course design, the course measures 7,300 yards, boasting fabulous views of the ocean. It circles the castle, part of which will become the clubhouse, and has been actively under construction throughout this year, with an opening date set for late 2024.

The course boasts a great variety of holes, each taking advantage of the existing features so it fits seamlessly into the existing landscape. There will be plenty of room to play, greens will be gently contoured and the bunkers will be small — a recipe for an enjoyable round for any skill level.

The design team is currently shaping some holes and finalizing others so that they can drain them before the winter.

Known worldwide as the ‘Golden Bear’, Jack is an 18-time major championship winner, including the Opens he won on Scottish soil, twice at St Andrews (1970 and 1978) and at Muirfield (1966). Jack’s love of Scotland is well-recognised and was acknowledged in 2005 when the Golden Bear became the only living non-UK national to feature on British currency.

Most recently he was awarded Honorary Citizenship of St Andrews at this year’s Open.

His legacy as a player is equalled only by his reputation as a golf course designer. With over 435 courses in 46 countries on his resume, he has built one of the world’s leading golf design firms.

Jack Nicklaus said:

“Here we are just south of Aberdeen in Stonehaven, with a beautiful castle on the hill. You stand up there with the castle, and you see the bay and the water. It’s a pretty view and pretty area, with a great tradition.

“From the first day I walked the estate and we discussed the course design, FM Group director Jonathon Milne made it very clear that the goal was to create something that would blend in naturally with the Scottish countryside.

“A Nicklaus-designed course in Scotland feels right. The Scottish people have always been very nice to me. I guess they like somebody who excels at what they do, and I’ve excelled in Scotland.

“Anytime you win at St Andrews, you’ve got to play some pretty special golf, and it’s a very special feeling. Bobby Jones always said that your golfing resume is not complete unless you have won at St Andrews. I won at St Andrews and I’m proud that I won again at St Andrews.”

Dirk Bouts, a senior design associate for Nicklaus Design, said:

“This going to be one of the great golf areas in the world. And it’s not what most people would expect from Scotland, where they think it’s got to be a links golf course along the sea.

“Jack has made sure that the golf course relates to the castle as much as possible. He also maximized the use of the existing river and burns, incorporating other features like existing walls and bridges, playing through treed areas and open fields and, of course, taking advantage of the magnificent views all around.”

Graeme Webster, Golf Course Project Manager, said:

“Our goal is to create a development that will blend in naturally with the spectacular Scottish countryside and Jack and his team work to an incredibly high level of detail, endeavouring to ensure that a wonderful golf course sits very well in the existing terrain.

“Current site features and the wonderful pallet of nature have all been carefully surveyed and incorporated into the design.

“Playing the course is going to be a therapeutic experience, with the wonderful views you will get on each hole. It will look like a golf course that has been there forever.

“The course is long and challenging enough to be tournament ready, but with the shorter tees, it also will be a fair test for less skilled players. That’s the mark of a great golf course.”


Notes to Editors

About the FM Group

The FM Group is an award-winning property developer with a well-earned reputation for delivering unique, high-quality developments.

It was founded by Jonathon Milne in 1997 and started from small beginnings with the refurbishment of a single apartment in Edinburgh.

The FM Group has completed some remarkable projects in a variety of locations around the world, including the UK and the Caribbean. This includes delivering thousands of homes and millions of square feet of commercial offices, leisure and retail space.

The FM Group is currently delivering high-quality homes in exclusive locations. This includes new-build apartment buildings, converted castles and other listed properties, as well as new villages and luxury resorts.

It invests in various business ventures and has a commitment to agriculture and the renewable energy sector.

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