The day I met a founding member of The Royal & Ancient Golf Club

You can imagine my surprise when the opportunity arose. The joys of Facebook told a long-standing business contact of mine that I was back on Scottish soil. An unexpected phone call invited me to have a private tour of the remarkable Broomhall House which opened its doors for the first time in 300 years, for exclusive use in Spring 2017.

Closed to the public since its original origins in 1702, Broomhall House on the banks of the Firth of Forth, just 20 minutes from Edinburgh’s city centre, still a private home of the lineal descendants of Robert the Bruce and the Earls of Elgin and Kincardine and their families, is now available for a once-in-a-lifetime bucket list golf experience of a different kind.

After sweeping up the long drive you quickly forget that you are a mere 20 minutes form the city. As the final approach beckons and the gravel crunches beneath your car, you curve round the turning circle and park at the foot of a stunning stately home. A warm welcome on the steps from Lord Bruce, assures me he reference to ‘stately’ is inappropriate – that this is very much a family home to this day, and he is proud to share the fact that over 70 children have been born in this house over the generations.

After a wondrous introduction to the impressive front hall, enjoying fresh coffee and delectable home-made shortbread, I was guided into the private library by Lord Bruce to meet the second tranche of ancestors.

Quite unexpected was the moment I was then introduced to a magnificent portrait of Charles Bruce the 5th Earl of Elgin a founding member of the Royal & Ancient golf club.

Charles Bruce, 5th Earl of Elgin and Founding member of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club

Charles Bruce, 5th Earl of Elgin and Founding member of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club

The pedigrees of this historic Scottish family of innovators, entrepreneurs, statesman, explorers and diplomats are extremely impressive, boasting among others – a king – Robert the Bruce; the traveller and early travel writer who discovered the source of the Blue Nile James Bruce; two viceroys of India – James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin & Victor Bruce, 9th Earl of Elgin; the diplomat who brought back and preserved the Elgin Marbles – Thomas Bruce the 7th Earl of Elgin; and most important to golfers – Charles Bruce the 5th Earl of Elgin who at the age of only 22, was a founding member of the Royal & Ancient golf club.

Still very much a private home to Andrew Bruce, the 11th Earl of Elgin, 15th Earl of Kincardine and the 37th Chief of the Name of Bruce and his family, yet filled with over 1000 years of the family’s impact on Scotland and the world – including Robert the Bruce’s original sword – it presents an un-patrolled glimpse into Scotland’s past that has formed her future.

Top class catering is provided for dinners and banquets here – what a perfect way to round off your Scottish Golf tour.

Private ground transfers and helicopter transfers are at your disposal and from there you can dine pre or post golf with our group and or families. From Broomhall House you can enjoy all Scottish Golf courses including St Andrews Old Course which is located in the same region.

It’s a once in a lifetime experience – for golfers who are nearing the end of their bucket list – add this one as a new way to make golf in Scotland a totally extraordinary experience.