HAMILTON Grand, overlooking the Old Course in St Andrews, is the second most photographed building in the world of golf after the R&A headquarters.
It is undergoing a multi-million pound redevelopment by The Kohler Company, owners of five red star Old Course Hotel, Golf Resort and Spa - and on Wednesday, February 1, it will be crowned with a dome, restoring a missing part of its original Victorian grandeur.
The original dome was replaced after a fire in 1976 with a fibreglass replica.
The new dome - made in Scotland - is a lead-clad timber frame weighing 3.5 tonnes, true to the original structure.
Helen Parker, director of sales for the Old Course Hotel and Hamilton Grand, said: “This is a key milestone in the restoration of Hamilton Grand.
“We are incredibly proud to be the guardians of such an iconic building - and to see the dome back in place will be an exciting day in the property’s amazing history.”
Launched in 1895 as The Grand Hotel, it was the height of luxury - the first building in Scotland to have a pneumatic elevator running between floors as well as hot and cold running water in every bathroom.
It set the benchmark for the ultimate in hospitality.
The Second World War saw the Air Ministry requisition the hotel, transforming the landmark into training headquarters for the Royal Air Force.
It then served St Andrews University for more than half a century before the Kohler Co. bought the property and announced their restoration plans.
It is being transformed into a collection of 26 homes of distinction – two, three and four bedroom apartments together with a private residents’ lounge and function suite as well as a new, stylish restaurant and bar that is set to become a firm favourite of those visiting golf’s mecca. “Our goal is to restore Hamilton Grand and create a dwelling that will make the people of St Andrews proud,” said Debbie Taylor, president – hospitality and real estate group, Kohler Co.
“We have been honoured to work with community members throughout this process.” “Hamilton Grand is a unique real estate opportunity for those who want to own a home in the birthplace of golf and a premier destination that is rich in history – the holy grail of golf.
“We are looking forward to restoring the building using our restoration expertise, and returning a piece of Scottish history to its landmark status.”