The Earl of Mar Golf Club


The Earl of Mar Golf Course, at Mar Hall Hotel & Resort


With spectacular views of the River Clyde and the Kilpatrick Hills beyond, the new 18-hole Earl of Mar championship course at Mar Hall offers a five star golf experience close to Glasgow. It was designed by respected golf course architect, Dave Thomas, who is best known for his work at The Belfry in England, plus San Roque and La Manga in Spain.

Already, the Earl of Mar gives the impression of a well-established course shaped around 250 year old sweet chestnut and beech trees, with strategically placed bunkers providing a challenge throughout your round.

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1ST: Boden Boo

507 YDS • PAR 5

A short par 5, this opening hole doglegs right to left. The drive is slightly uphill to a narrow landing area, guarded by one prominent bunker. Accuracy is the key to setting up your second shot to the elevated green. With out of bounds to the right and bunkers to the left, an aggressive second shot will reward with a birdie chance, but most players will lay up with an iron. Risk & reward or play safe? Either way, a great start to the course is ‘on’.

2ND: Bargarran

212 YDS • PAR 3

A difficult par three hole and the first of the four short holes on the course. The green nestles in the hillside against a stunning back-drop of mature trees. A good strike is required to carry the deep bunkers that threaten to the left and front of the green. If in doubt, lay up and chip close for par.

3RD: The Round House

405 YDS • PAR 4

With a dogleg right to left around two majestic Lime trees, this is a tough par 4. Setting up the drive is crucial to keep the green in sight. The green sits below fairway level so good judgement is required for the second shot. Trouble lies to the left and back of the green so beware, but positive shots will be rewarded.

4TH: Freelands Park

449 YDS • PAR 4

This long, straight par four demands a good drive down the middle of the fairway to open up the green for a medium to long iron approach shot. Trouble awaits either side of the fairway along the length of the hole and bunkers thirty yards short and to the left of the green must be avoided. A great par 4.

5TH: Pledging Stone

184 YDS • PAR 3

A slightly elevated tee provides this par 3 hole with a good view of the green and spectacular views of the River Clyde. The green is guarded by an expansive bunker to the left side and is situated close to the river walk and out of bounds so an accurate tee shot is required if you are to walk away with a par.

6TH: Vital Spark

382 YDS • PAR 4

This straight par 4 plays alongside the river walk towards the green which is dominated by mature trees to the right. A strong drive is needed to avoid the fairway bunker and pond on the right hand side and to open up your approach to the green. The putting surface is large and undulating so club selection will be important to make sure you stay out of the greenside bunkers. Two well-placed shots will be rewarded.

7TH: Bobbing John

411 YDS • PAR 4

The mature trees that dominate this part of the Earl of Mar estate determined the layout and design of this par four hole. A decision has to be made at the tee - if you drive to the right, the hole is narrower between the trees that shape the hole right to left; or play straight away and the fairway is blocked with rough and mounding but will ultimately be more open and forgiving. The green is surrounded by bunkers so a shorter second shot may be the best way to play the hole - the challenge is yours.

8TH: Turkish Oak

350 YDS • PAR 4

This short par four plays slightly left to right but the fairway slopes from the right which helps keep the ball away from the rare Turkey oak tree guarding that side of the hole. Watch out for the big bunker as this will catch shots pulled to the left. The green is elevated and well protected with deep bunkers so aim to use a short iron or wedge for control on your second shot.

9TH: Earl’s Pasture

376 YDS • PAR 4

The front nine concludes with a straight par 4. Two good shots are required to reach the green and a well-placed tee shot is a must if you are to avoid the big bunker on the right hand side of the fairway. A good drive will open up the green but beware of the large tree in front and to the left on your approach. The putting surface is elevated and well protected with deep bunkers.

10TH: The Short Hall

147 YDS • PAR 3

A very short par three, this opening hole on the back nine requires an accurate tee shot. The green is surrounded by mature trees giving a well defined target but trouble lurks with bunkers on both sides and a steep run off adds to the challenge. It may be the shortest hole on the course but it should not be readily dismissed.

11TH: Lime Avenue

442 YDS • PAR 4

This long par four enjoys an elevated tee position. A drive favouring the left hand side of the fairway should give the best line into the green. A bunker guards the putting surface so go for a long approach shot as anything short and to the right will land in trouble. You’ll need two good shots to walk away with par.

12TH: The Brigadier

435 YDS • PAR 4

Another tough par four, this hole plays uphill and into the prevailing wind. The fairway landing area is generous but the second shot is the key to the hole and must be struck well to carry the large bunker in front and to the left of the green. Short and to the right will leave a tricky chip to the raised green. The putting surface is quite dangerous and falls quickly off to the left hand side.

13TH: Roakery Wood

362 YDS • PAR 4

The thirteenth is a medium to short par four with a slight dogleg left to right. The left hand side of the fairway runs parallel to the upper woodland area and provides the best approach into the green. Several well positioned bunkers and steep terrain threaten on the right so do your best to stay left and take advantage of the large green.

14TH: Kilpatrick

352 YDS • PAR 4

This short right to left par four is one of the most picturesque on the course. Flanked by mature trees and the backdrop of the river and Kilpatrick Hills beyond, the hole runs slightly downhill and requires a drive favouring the right hand side of the fairway. The bunkers will catch the straight shot or someone trying to cut too much off the dogleg so beware. A well positioned drive opens up the green and gives the best line into the flag. A well struck short iron or wedge will be rewarded.

15TH: Erskine Vista

478 YDS • PAR 5

The 15th offers a great birdie opportunity but trouble lurks all the way down the left of this hole so keep your drive to the right side of the fairway. This is a relatively easy par five laid out between several mature trees which point the way to the green but those trees can also cause problems for the errant shot. Avoid the trees and the green will provide some interesting putting and more good scores.

16TH: Mary’s Keep

401 YDS • PAR 4

A generous fairway that doglegs right to left looks easiest and most attractive to hit on the right, but favour that route and you’ll only lengthen the second shot and give yourself a more difficult approach. The ideal line is as close to the fairway bunkers as possible, allowing a shorter and more elevated second shot. The green is narrow from front to back so club selection is important here. The pin positions can also be tricky so the middle of the green is a good result.

17TH: Sitka Pen

201 YDS • PAR 3

The last of the par three’s on the course is dominated by a mature oak and acer tree to the left and a back drop of Sitka spruce trees. A bunker guards shots from the middle to the left hand side of the green so the challenge and difficulty on this hole depends on the pin position. The ball can gather from the right hand side so it may be worth considering an approach with a long iron or rescue wood.

18TH: The Reservoir

413 YDS • PAR 4

This closing hole doglegs left to right, and requires a well positioned drive to avoid the fairway bunkers and mature oak tree. The second shot is uphill to a large platform green that slopes quickly from back to front, providing some interesting putts for the gallery in the clubhouse. En route, the fairway slopes from right to left providing some assistance for the ball to gather and roll and offering good views of the putting surface. Accuracy from the tee and a positive second shot with plenty of club is required to finish the course on a high note.