FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, Lough Erne Golf Resort, Lough Erne

Sep 1, 2012
2012 / September 2012

There could not be a more beautiful setting than Lough Erne. The Northern Ireland lake inspired Nick Faldo to choose this site for his first golf course design. Complementing the course is Northern Ireland’s first 5-star hotel, which has every amenity — including the Catalina Restaurant, where Executive Head Chef Noel McMeel’s creations emphasize fresh, seasonal and local produce. The restaurant is named after the World War II Catalina flying boats that used the lake as a base.

The par-72 course occupies a 600-acre peninsula between Castle Hume Lough and Lower Lough Erne and offers sweeping views of the countryside and the loughs. The resort, opened in 2007, includes 120 guestrooms and six suites. If you need more room, you can settle in one of the resort’s 25 two- and three-bedroom Loughside Lodges. Some are owned by the rich and famous, including the course tournament professional, Rory McIlroy.

The Faldo course teed up its first drive in July 2009. A second course, Castle Hume, offers golfers some diversity. Lough Erne, stretching 25 miles and encompassing 365 islands, offers outdoor pursuits and water sports and is a fly fisherman’s dream.

I played the course with Lynn McCool, head professional at Lough Erne, on a glorious day when the drizzle held off until the last hole.

Hole 5 | Dovecote Carry 197 yards, par 3

Take an extra club, as many a drive from this tee ends up wet. Crossing the water has a psychological effect on many golfers, but I launched a ball that landed in front of the flag for par.

Hole 6 | Collop Rise 595 yards, par 5

Rising above the hotel on the left and looking down on the lough below, this tee box offers a photo opportunity. Lynn instructed me to aim my drive to the road on the right side; this puts you in position “A” on the fairway. From your perfect drive, you will need two more near-perfect shots to hit this green in regulation, avoiding a trio of bunkers on the right and four more protecting the green. The course was built with a base of 18 inches of sand, which has flattened to nine inches — a perfect landing and playing surface.c

Hole 7 | Devenish Drop 396 yards, par 4

A review of Lough Erne is not complete without covering Hole 7, which Rory McIlroy drove in one shot during the Lough Erne Challenge in 2009. It must have been a massive hit. I only hope Rory carded an eagle!

We mere mortals tend to bite off more than we can chew, and many bite off too much on the downhill dogleg right, leaving their ball in the lough forever. Best to aim toward the middle fairway bunker and fade your drive toward the center of the fairway. This leaves you with a rather easy chip to the green.

Hole 8 | Saddleback 478 yards, par 4

This is a beautiful hole, with the lough on the right and rough blowing grasses to the left. You need two great shots to make this hole in two; when I played, the wind was blowing strong from right to left, which easily pushes a ball into the rough or one of the two bunkers. The fairway has a slight zigzag right to the water and a slight left thereafter. There are lush trees to the right as you approach the green, causing havoc for anyone who strays off. A huge cloverleaf trap sits right in front of the slightly elevated green. No wonder it’s ranked the most difficult hole on the course.

Hole 10 | Emerald Isle 351 yards, par 4

This is a fun hole: You hit from an elevated tee box down to the fairway that runs along the lough to a green that juts out on a small peninsula. Your drive should mirror mine but slightly more right, as I landed in the rough. Lynn’s drive was perfect, favoring the left side but remaining squarely in the fairway. I found a nice spot of rough, but my ball was sitting up, which allowed me to nail the green for par. This is another photo opportunity, with the green and the lough below.

Hole 13 | Ederlough 218 yards, par 3

This great par 3 requires a perfect iron shot, as the green lies slightly elevated but is surrounded by three bunkers: Two are on the right and the third is closer to the green to the left. I caught the latter but was able to shoot out of the bunker with enough gusto to par the hole.

Hole 14 | Fada 622 yards, par 5

This is the longest hole on the course, with a slight turn to the left. Your shot from the tee box does not offer much to see; your ball must climb the crest of the hill on this blind shot. I nailed a drive to the left side of the fairway, finding the rough. Here you have a clear view of the hole, which is a downhill rollercoaster. Your second shot should favor the left side of the fairway, offering a perfect approach to the green and keeping you well clear of the marshes on the right. A few walkers gave their hellos as I hit my shot to the green with some disappointment and came up short. But a simple chip let me walk off respectably with a bogey.

Hole 17 | Lough & Legend 357 yards, par 4

Holes 17 and 18 together make a great finish. Hole 17 is a drive from an elevated tee to the fairway below, which doglegs right along the lough. Many players aim too far right to cut the corner — and regret it afterward as they have a pint in the hotel bar. Lovely villas line the left side of the fairway, ending with the hotel at the 18th tee.

Hole 18 | Cygnets Rest 228 yards, par 3

The 18th is a perfect ending, with the hotel to the left and the water and reeds of the lough in front of the green and to the right. The hole was voted the best par 3 in all of the U.K. and Ireland in 2010. I used a 5-wood to make it to the very front of the green, nearly not having enough power to make it as a slight drizzle came down. I tipped my hat to the Faldo statue on the left side of 18 and to my room, the Nick Faldo suite, overlooking the 18th green. Of course, I celebrated with a Guinness in the Loughside Bar.

Lough Erne Golf Resort

Belleek Road
Enniskillen, Fermanagh
BT93 7ED Northern Ireland
tel 44 28 6632 3230

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Hide Away in the Scottish Highlands with 57 Nord

Situated deep within the Scottish Highlands, just steps from many lakes and mountains, lies 57 Nord. This collection of two design-led boutique hideaways blends the region’s Norse-Gael heritage by incorporating Scottish craftsmanship, modern Scandinavian design and panoramic views into both structures.

Why the Future of Business Travel Might Look Different

Global business travel is making its way back, even as the pandemic and other world events continue to challenge its return. In a recent poll from the Global Business Travel Association, more than four in five respondents (86 percent) from across the industry said they feel more optimistic than they did at the beginning of the year. Business travel bookings, the need to travel to do business and employee willingness to travel are all on the rise.

Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Luxury Art Deco Lodging Sommerro Opens in Oslo

Oslo’s Art Deco connections just grew stronger with the opening of Sommerro, housed within a historic building in the city’s West End neighborhood of Frogner. The structure itself was once the location of the city’s original electrical company, Oslo Lysverker. The conversion to urban, luxury lodging features 231 guestrooms, 56 residences, seven restaurant and bar options, and meeting and event spaces for up to 150 people. There’s also a 100-seat gilded theater and expansive wellness space, including a full-service gym and Oslo’s first, year-round rooftop pool, sauna and terrace.

Daily
Nov 29, 2022

Key West Airport Breaks Ground on $100 Million Expansion

Key West International Airport recently held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of its $100 million expansion. Roman Gastesi, administrator, Monroe County; Richard Strickland, director of airports; and others attended the ceremony and outlined details of the Concourse A terminal expansion project.

Luxurious Adventures Await.

Discover why Global Traveler readers named Cunard® the Best Large-Ship Cruise Line for seven consecutive years. For a limited time, book your voyage during Cunard’s Black Friday Sale promotion and take advantage of Reduced Fares*, up to $600 Onboard Credit^ per stateroom, and a 50% Reduced Deposit‡. Choose from an array of exciting journeys, including Transatlantic Crossings and voyages to Alaska, the Caribbean and Canada & New England.

Daily
Nov 28, 2022

World’s Most Underrated Travel Experiences

Adventure tour operator Explore Worldwide recently conducted a study to find the most underrated travel experiences around the world. The operator analyzed more than 350 lesser-known destinations and experiences across more than 130 countries, ranking them based on how high its Trip Advisor score fared against how many people actually reviewed the activity and how many Google searches the experience received.

Daily
Nov 24, 2022

Angama To Open Deluxe Lodge Near Kilimanjaro

Lodging and hospitality company Angama announced the November 2023 opening of Angama Amboseli, an intimate, 10-suite lodge set in Kenya’s private, 5,700-acre Kimana Sanctuary, against the iconic backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, located just across the border in Tanzania.

8 Reasons to Visit Ireland this Fall

Considering an autumnal adventure or Thanksgiving trip this year? Well, with walkable cities, cozy pubs and lots of seasonal festivals, the island of Ireland is calling. And if you need more reasons to Press the Green Button and go, take a look and see what awaits you on the Emerald Isle …

Daily
Nov 24, 2022

Emerald Cruises Announces Significant Savings in Black Friday Sale

There is nothing better than the gift of travel. Instead of giving your loved ones material items, give them an experience they will never forget. This year, Emerald Cruises offers excellent Black Friday deals on Europe and Southeast Asia river cruises, as well as on the latest collection of luxury ocean yacht sailings on Emerald Azzurra and Emerald Sakara.