Monty's Open House in Ireland

Wednesday February 21st, 2007
Monty's Python: Colin's course snakes around stately Carton Demesne. <SPAN CLASS="picturesource">Aidan Bradley</SPAN>

Colin Montgomerie is famously 0-for-lifetime in golf's big four tournaments, but he can boast one major achievement in design: his eponymous course at Carton House Golf Club in Ireland, which hosts the Nissan Irish Open this month.

Located in the Country Kildare town of Maynooth, 14 miles west of Dublin, the 7,301-yard Montgomerie Course opened in 2003 on an estate dominated by Carron Demesne, a grand home that dates to the early 17th century.

The layout is a masterpiece of strategic bunkering, and with more twists and turns than an Irish country lane, the wind is a constant hazard. Despite positive reviews, the Montgomerie Course has remained largely beneath the radar of visiors. The Irish Open (May 19-22) will ensure that Monty finally gets his due, if only as a designer.

Greens fees: €75 (about $100) before 9:30 a.m. Monday-Friday and €135 ($180) at other times. For reservations call 0113531-5052000 or visit carton.ie.

Rolling back the Euros

In recent years, Irish golf has become known less for the warmth of its welcome than for the enthusiasm of its price gougers. But there is relief in sight this summer on at least one prominent course. The Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links in Dublin--not to be confused with the more celebrated Portmarnock Golf Club nearby--is marking its 10th anniversary by rolling back prices on the Bernhard langer-designed track to 1995 levels. Monday through Thursday in July and August, greens fees are €125 ($165).

For information call 800-457-4000 or visit portmarnock.com

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