Category: Donald Trump

October 22, 2013

Critics: Taxpayers foot bill for Trump Ferry Point course

Posted at 4:20 PM by Kevin Cunningham

Last week New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, with Donald Trump and Jack Nicklaus in tow, held a grand opening ceremony for Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point, a brand-new municipal golf course located in the South Bronx with stunning views of the Manhattan skyline.

But the honeymoon period is already over for the young course as details of the city's deal with the real-estate mogul/reality TV star come to light. CBS New York has more:

The views are magnificent, but so is the price tag. The golf course cost $120 million in tax dollars and counting. Many in nearby public housing developments said the funds should have been reprioritized.

“There’s other things we could spend on — all those dollars, children, handicapped, old folks’ homes,” said Bronx resident Tito Giboyeaux.

Trump was hired by the city to finish the project, which had been mired in financial and logistical problems for 15 years. For his efforts, Bloomberg agreed to put Trump's name on the project and struck a 20-year concession deal to allow him to operate -- and profit from -- the course, a deal that critics have taken exception to.

“Trump doesn’t even pay anything to the city until the fourth year. It’s just a gift,” said Geoffrey Croft, president of New York City Park Advocates. “City taxpayers are building the most expensive course in the United States for a so-called billionaire."

See the full CBS New York's report above.

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August 21, 2013

Trump to name second Scottish course after his mother

Posted at 11:24 AM by Pete Madden

TrumpWho said Donald Trump doesn't have a heart?

According to Frank Urquhart of The Scotsman, the real estate tycoon turned reality television star turned presidential candidate released detailed plans for his second Scottish golf course at his resort in Aberdeen, to be named MacLeod, in honor of his late mother, a native of Scotland's Isle of Lewis.

"This will be a golf course for all, ranging in difficulty and challenge ... spanning a range of lengths up to 7,400 yards," said golf course architect Dr. Martin Hawtree. "The rough will be a particular feature of the course, changing in character through the course from wild meadows in the arable parts of the site, through wetlands in the central areas, to marram roughs in the southern dunes, and heathland vegetation in the areas immediately to the back of the sand dunes.”

Hawtree also designed the championship course at Trump International Golf Links, which recently came in at No. 50 on our Top 100 Courses in the World rankings, though Trump told us, with characteristic modesty, that it's better than St. Andrews.

Let's hope Hawtree's sophomore effort measures up, or he could find himself on that all too familiar hot seat.

(Photo: Reuters)

August 06, 2013

Trump: My Scotland course is better than St. Andrews

Posted at 1:36 PM by Josh Sens

Trump_300As you may have noticed, Donald Trump favors a wild and wind-blown look.

We don’t mean his hairdo.

We’re talking golf design. Like his pompadour, The Donald’s newest course -- Trump International Golf Links, in Aberdeen, Scotland -- cuts a distinctive profile, snaking through a heaving coastal dunescape, its holes cut hard along the North Sea.

The source of controversy before it opened (critics complained that Trump played the bully in getting it approved), the layout has since inspired widespread praise: most notably among Golf Magazine course-raters, who ranked it No. 50 on Golf Magazine’s list of Top 100 Courses in the World -- making it the highest-rated new course on the 2013 list.

Lofty praise, indeed.

Or so we thought.

Saying he was “honored but not thrilled,” Trump took time this week to discuss the rankings while offering his take on golf course architecture, describing what makes his links in Aberdeen so different and why he believes it’s destined to achieve its rightful place -- above the likes of Muirfield, Pine Valley and the Old Course -- at the very summit of the Top 100 list.

GOLF: Congratulations on your Top 100 ranking.

Donald Trump: Thank you. I’m honored but not thrilled.

GOLF: No? How come?

DT: A lot of the greatness in any course is the land, and this land is unique. I looked at more than 100 sites around the world, but I really wanted to do something great in Europe. Preferably Scotland. And there was nothing like this land. It sits right on the North Sea, with waves crashing right beside you, and it has these incredible giant dunes. If you take the biggest dune at Bandon Dunes, it’s like a toy compared to what we’ve got. They’re just amazing. They’re like mountains. You can’t build dunes like this. They’re a million years old. Older than the Old Course.

GOLF: Which you’ve played?

DT: I have. I love it. It’s a wonderful course with incredibly rich history.

GOLF: But not better than yours?

DT: St. Andrews is spectacular, and it has that legacy, and legacy has real value. But in terms of the physical course, there’s no comparison. I don’t think there’s any course that compares.

GOLF: Muirfield?

DT: I love Muirfield, too. But it’s not really on the ocean. And it doesn’t have the dunes system. You won’t find any course in the world like mine.

GOLF: But you’re Donald Trump. Of course you’re going to say that.

DT: Others have said the same. Sandy Jones, the head of the PGA in Europe. He said, “Your course is in the top three and I can’t think of the other two.”

GOLF: What are your top three?

DT: I’ve played many of the Top 100, and I love them. I have great respect for them. I was just invited to play in a tournament celebrating the 100th anniversary of Pine Valley. I played with the chairman of the club. It’s a spectacular course, and the reason it was built where it was is the land. The land is spectacular. I have a course, Pine Hills, that sits right next door on land that is just as great. And the course itself is, in my opinion, as good or better than Pine Valley.

GOLF: You don’t entirely agree with the Top 100.

DT: I have great respect for many of the courses on the list. I could also say there are some serious mistakes on it.

GOLF: Such as?

DT: Why would I want to be controversial?

GOLF: Your course in Scotland caused a fair bit of controversy.

DT: It did. And that was great because a lot was written about it. When I told people I was going to build there, everybody laughed. Those dunes were earmarked. People said, You can’t even walk on them, let alone do what you want to do.

GOLF: So, you’ve got the dunes. What else makes the course so great in your eyes?

DT: I got Dr. Martin Hawtree to design it. I went to Peter Dawson of the R&A and I asked him who his top architect choices were. He said his first was Martin Hawtree, and that after that he’d go with Martin Hawtree, and Martin Hawtree. He’s just been incredible. When you see the work he did there, you can’t believe it. It’s set in these giant dunes, but the course is very easy to walk, which is difficult to do in land like this. There are beautiful footpaths that wind through the dunes and they’re surrounded by these incredible high grasses, but you don’t have to go up and down a lot of hills. The purpose of the dunes is to protect you from the weather, so when you’re playing the course, it can feel still even though there are 50 mph winds swirling just above you.

GOLF: What’s your best score on it?

DT: I’ve played it probably six times, and each time, I’ve gotten better. I’m learning its nuances. It’s a very challenging course, but it’s fair.

GOLF: A lot of people have said it feels much older than it is.

DT: Legacy has value. You can’t buy time. You can’t open course and immediately have 200 years of history behind you. But my course has all the ingredients to be the best in the world.

GOLF: So 50 is way too low?

DT: As I said, I’m honored. But if you were to call me five years from now and say it’s number 50, I’d be very disappointed.

The Golf Magazine Top 100 Courses in the World:





Photo: Donald Trump at Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeen, Scotland.

February 12, 2013

Report: Donald Trump to build second course at Scotland resort

Posted at 4:11 PM by Cameron Morfit

TrumpLet's play two.

Donald Trump says that golfers are so gaga to play his Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeen, Scotland that he needs to build a second course on the site. According to, Trump has submitted the plans for another 18 holes to the Aberdeen Council, just seven months after the first one opened.  

The Donald hopes to lure a Ryder Cup and/or a British Open to Trump International Golf Links, his $1.17 billion Scottish golf resort, according to the article.

Trump’s proposals for the new course, which will be named after his Scottish-born mother Mary MacLeod, were presented to Aberdeenshire Council, the developer said today in an e-mailed statement. The 18-hole track would stretch up to 7,540 yards on the southern end of Trump’s 1,400-acre Menie Estate, 10 miles north of Aberdeen on Scotland’s northeast coast.

Trump, whose mother was born on the island of Lewis, spent more than 100 million pounds building the first 18 holes, restoring the estate and carrying out infrastructure work. He's built a 22-acre driving range, a 3,000 square-meter putting green and a 10,000 square-meter short-game practice area.

More than 10,000 golfers played the links course from July through October, trumpeted Trump, adding that he will try to host the British Open or the Ryder Cup. Bookings for 2013 have risen 55 percent from a year ago, he said.

“The unprecedented demand to play our championship course has accelerated our plans to build the second course,” Trump said in the statement.

Photo: Donald Trump at a photo shoot during the construction of his first Scotland golf course in 2010 (Getty Images).

January 17, 2013

'Perfect storm' damages Donald Trump's Scotland course: Truth & Rumors

Posted at 2:51 PM by Mike Walker

The fourth hole at Trump International Golf Links, which sustained damage in winter storms. (Brian Morgan)

Donald Trump outmaneuvered many opponents to build Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeen, Scotland, but the Scottish winter might be his toughest opponent yet.

The course, which opened to rave reviews this summer, lost a chunk of turf near the fourth tee after a "perfect storm"  dumped rain on the Aberdeen coast last month, according to the Daily Mail (UK).

Last month, severe weather battered the East Coast, as a ‘perfect storm’ caused extensive damage. An unusual combination of tidal forces, strong winds and atmospheric pressure led to huge waves and high tides.

Mr Trump’s spokesman said: ‘The burn that runs through that part of the course was overrun with water and caused some damage. It’s easy to correct and we’ll certainly be prepared now. ‘When you have any kind of links course, occasionally you have devastating storms. I think we can all agree that the storms that hit the North-East three weeks ago were unprecedented situations of extreme volumes of water.

‘The course held up very well. There was some surface damage but actually we were very pleased with how the course endured such an extreme weather situation. There are two sections impacted because the burn burst its banks.

A local resident discovered the damage, which turned a path near the fourth tee into a crater five-feet deep and 15-feet wide, according to the Mail.

Last night, Suzanne Kelly, a local resident who discovered the damage, said it was ‘beautifully ironic’.

She added: ‘The amount I know about golf would fit into a teaspoon. However, I do know when I’m walking on a pathway and come to a big chasm, that’s not the best.

‘I’m just glad the light hadn’t gone by the time I got to that point on the course otherwise I’d be talking from a hospital bed with a broken leg.

According to the Sun (UK), a Trump representative said the course damage would be repaired before its April reopening.

January 11, 2013

Truth & Rumors: Donald Trump invites President Obama to play golf

Posted at 1:47 PM by Samantha Glover

During an interview with Sean Hannity of Fox News, Donald Trump invited President Obama to play golf at his Washington D.C. course, according to a report by Newshounds.

Trump said he hopes that in six years, when Obama is presumably retired and playing golf, “hopefully at Trump National in Washington, because I have the best course in Washington," that he'd "love" to "have (Obama) there."

The invitation comes just months after Trump offered to donate $5 million to President Obama's charity of choice in exchange for his birth certificate.

Photos: Trump International Golf Club - Scotland
Photo: President Obama on the golf course
Photos: Top 10 Presidential Golfers

(Photo: Vincent Laforet)

December 11, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Prominent U.K. golf writer joins call for Trump boycott

Posted at 12:57 PM by Samantha Glover

Bill Elliott, editor-at-large at the U.K. magazine Golf Monthly, said he would never play Donald Trump's Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeen, Scotland, and he asked his readers to refuse to play the new course as well.

Elliott decided to boycott the course after watching "You've Been Trumped," a documentary about the course's construction that is critical of Trump.

“By all accounts, this is a seriously brilliant links. Opened in the summer, the plaudits for it have been almost overwhelmingly in their positivity. Despite this, I’ll never play it. Why? Because I watched, along with almost a million others, the documentary You’ve Been Trumped on television."

“Even allowing for the fact that it was a one-sided film, it was impossible not to be shocked by the tactics used to try to intimidate a few local residents who refused to sell their homes. This intimidation apparently goes on.”

George Sorial, an executive in the Trump Organization, said Elliott lacks "editorial integrity" and that the course is a success within the industry and with golfers:

“Bill Elliott does not know what he is talking about and his comments demonstrate a complete lack of editorial integrity because he never visited our course or inquired about the issues."

“His entire position is based upon a second-hand source that is a gross distortion of the truth. The global golf community has embraced our course and bookings continue to soar."

“If Mr Elliott took the time to investigate the facts the way a professional writer should, he would be very embarrassed.”

Elliott's announcement comes just one month after a European golf consultant spoke out against Trump International over the "You've Been Trumped" movie's allegations of the Trump Organization's heavy-handedness in dealing with Aberdeen residents during course construction.

Gallery: Trump International
Travelin' Joe on Trump International
December 05, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Donald Trump boycotting Glenfiddich over award given to opponent

Posted at 5:13 PM by Samantha Glover

Michael Forbes, a Scottish landowner who refused to sell his property to Donald Trump and rose to prominence as an opponent of Trump's Aberdeenshire golf development, was named Top Scot in Glenfiddich's annual Spirit of Scotland Awards. In response, The Donald is calling for a boycott, according to the BBC.

"Glenfiddich's choice of Michael Forbes, as Top Scot, will go down as one of the great jokes ever played on the Scottish people and is a terrible embarrassment to Scotland."

"I make a pledge that no Trump property will ever do business with Glenfiddich or William Grant and Sons."

William Grant and Sons, the distiller that produces Glenfiddich, pointed out that Forbes was chosen by a public vote.

"Top Scot is a totally open category in which the people of Scotland can vote for whomsoever they choose and Glenfiddich has no influence on this decision.

"In the history of these awards, we are not aware of the Top Scot award causing any offence or upset to anyone and it is not our intention to do so now. These awards were set up to give the people of Scotland a vote and we must respect their decision."

Who would Trump have chosen this year? Tennis star Andy Murray:

Trump, who doesn't drink, also claimed that Glenfiddich awarded Forbes the title in response to the release of Trump's whiskey this year, according to

“Glenfiddich is upset that we created our own single malt whisky using another distillery, which offers far greater products..."

November 20, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Bill Clinton books trip to Trump Scotland

Posted at 11:52 AM by Mark Dee

Clinton_colombiaAccording to The Scotsman, former President Bill Clinton has booked a tee time at Donald Trump's Trump International Scotland.

Mr Trump said: “I have just spoken to Bill Clinton and he has told me he is going to be flying to Scotland next summer to play the course.”

The pair have forged an unlikely friendship in recent years, despite holding different political views.

This summer Mr Clinton, who was Democratic president between 1993 and 2001, said Mr Trump had been “uncommonly nice” to him and his wife Hillary, and said he “loved” playing golf with him.

Earlier this week, Trump announced plans to build a second course on the property. According to the report, the first course has received more than 8,000 bookings since it opened for play in July.

Photo Gallery: President Obama on the golf course
Photo Gallery: The Top 10 Golfing Presidents
Brady Riggs: Why George W. Bush was our best presidential golfer
Travelin' Joe says Trump Scotland is world class | Photos

[Photo: President Clinton plays in a pro-am at the PGA Nationwide Tour's Pacific Rubiales Colombia Championship in Bogota in February 2012. Getty Images]

November 19, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Trump announces plans for second course in Scotland

Posted at 10:09 AM by Mark Dee

Trump_openingMartin Hawtree -- you're hired. Again.

That was Donald Trump's message on Monday, when the BBC reported that Trump will begin development on a second Scotland course at Trump International Links in Aberdeenshire.

Hawtree designed the first course, which was unveiled to acclaim earlier this year. He'll head the second project, which is will be built south of the original track.

Of course, all of this comes amid Trump's contentious battle with…much of Scotland. And, it runs contrary to his claim that he would halt development on the site until the government stopped construction of a £230 million ($365 million) wind farm on the coast.

According to the BBC report, Trump did continue to stress the threat the windmills present in announcing the new course. He contends that they will ruin ocean views from the property.

RELATED: Travelin' Joe on Trump Scotland
RELATED: Stunning images of Trump Scotland

[Photo: Donald Trump at the official opening of Trump International Links in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, in July 2012. Getty Images.]

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