Glasgow & West Scotland

Donald Trump's name 'will boost Turnberry'

Donald Trump Image copyright PA
Image caption Donald Trump said the name "Trump Turnberry" was not about his ego

Tycoon Donald Trump has defended his decision to add his name to one of Scotland's most famous golf courses.

The US billionaire bought the Turnberry course and hotel in Ayrshire for an undisclosed sum in April.

The resort was subsequently renamed Trump Turnberry.

During his first media conference at the course, Mr Trump said the renaming was not for his "ego" but to make the course "more successful".

He has pledged to spend more than £100m on renovating the hotel that overlooks the famous course and said there will be some potential changes to it over the next few years, particularly holes nine to 11.

Branded helicopter

Mr Trump said he discussed changing the name of the resort with "important people" in Scotland and the world of golf and said he would not have changed it if he thought it would have a negative impact.

Sitting at a large bay window overlooking the famous course with a Trump-branded helicopter on the hotel lawn, he said: "I looked at the name change in the form of logos and it looks so incredible.

"One of the things that I think is good (about the Trump organisation) is we have tremendous success, our buildings are tremendously successful, so if you add it, I'm not doing it for ego, I'm doing it because it's going to make the place more successful.

"If I thought it was going to hurt Turnberry I wouldn't use the name but it's going to make this great resort much more successful than it has been and that's the primary reason I'm doing it.

Image copyright Other
Image caption Mr Trump has pledged to turn the hotel at Turnberry into one of the finest in the world

"If I thought it would have a negative impact, I would not do it. I want to see incredible success for this resort beyond anything else."

He added: "I actually asked some people that are very important in Scotland, although I won't get them in trouble by saying their name, but I've spoken to very important and very powerful political people and I said 'what do you think of the idea of Trump Turnberry?'

"Everyone said that they would love it, I spoke to the higher-ups in the world of golf and one of them said it used to be called Westin Turnberry when the Japanese owned it, I think Trump Turnberry sounds much better."

Mr Trump, was joined at the press conference by his son Eric and golf course architect Martin Ebert, said the hotel is debt-free and there is no mortgage on the property.

He added: "We are going to be spending at least £100m on redoing the hotel, on building it up to the highest standards, and I'm talking world standards.

"We have a facility really that can be the finest hotel anywhere in the world, and certainly the finest hotel of its kind anywhere in the world."

'Greatest canvas'

Turnberry is on the rota of courses that can stage the Open Championship and Mr Trump said that was a factor is his decision to purchase the resort.

"It's a magnificent tournament, I've watched it for so many years and never missed it," he said.

"It's just an honour to be associated with the Royal and Ancient (golf's governing body) and the tournament potentially.

"It's already had four Opens and the women are coming next year, which I consider very important, and I think the greatness of this course will lead to others, it has to.

"We have now the greatest canvas in all of golf so ultimately people can't avoid it."

Turnberry is Mr Trump's second Scottish course, following on from his Aberdeenshire resort at Menie which opened in July 2012.

Plans for a second golf course, club house and hotel on the same site remain on hold amid a bitter dispute over a proposed wind farm adjacent to the resort, but

Mr Trump said the current course is a success and has been a "big boost" for Aberdeen.

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