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Trump unveils Menie clubhouse design

September 20 2011

Trump unveils Menie clubhouse design
Trump International – Scotland have unveiled the first images of a planned clubhouse building to stand as centrepiece of the Menie golf course.

A single storey mock gothic structure, some 1,600sq/m in size, it is a far cry from the tower of glass favoured by project masterplanner Gareth Hoskins, bearing instead the preferences of the schemes driving force – Donald Trump.

Clad in granite, slate and glass the structure is intended to complement the historic MacLeod House (which Trump has described as his “home”).

Douglas Forrest, director of Acanthus Architects df, said: “We’re extremely proud of the final design we have developed, working closely with Mr Trump and the wider team.”

Sarah Malone, Executive Vice President, Trump International – Scotland said: “The grand double height public spaces, with high and low level glazing, provide optimum light and sensational views across the Great Dunes of Scotland and North Sea.  With luxurious Scottish interiors and a full range of services and facilities for golfers and visitors, this clubhouse will be second to none.”

Other architects were less impressed by the fruits of Acanthus Architects labours however, with one telling Urban Realm that the pile looked like a "mock Victorian asylum."

A planning application will be submitted to Aberdeenshire Council in the coming weeks.
Acanthus claim that "modern detailing" will give the "visual and tactile cues" expected by todays visitors
Acanthus claim that "modern detailing" will give the "visual and tactile cues" expected by todays visitors


richard heggie
#1 Posted by richard heggie on 20 Sep 2011 at 16:40 PM
A missed opportunity.
William Tunnell
#2 Posted by William Tunnell on 20 Sep 2011 at 17:41 PM
It is quite utterly appalling. Merely a (badly) decorated shed.
Alan Sloman
#3 Posted by Alan Sloman on 20 Sep 2011 at 18:11 PM
Looks like a large water pumping station. All those millions and absolutely no taste.
Good ol' Donald....
The Windmills out at sea can only improve it.
#4 Posted by NR on 20 Sep 2011 at 18:41 PM
In 2008 Willie Miller and Malcolm Fraser wrote about the development and its ghastliness.

Seems Gareth Hoskins was useful to get the Masterplan passed, that's all?
#5 Posted by Alex on 20 Sep 2011 at 19:00 PM
Wow, that is awful. Looks like Treblinka
Ross McEwan
#6 Posted by Ross McEwan on 20 Sep 2011 at 19:51 PM
He/they the office of Hoskins should be struck off immediately for mis-representing an architect.
Ross McEwanr
#7 Posted by Ross McEwanr on 20 Sep 2011 at 19:55 PM
Sorry but that should after reading been directed at Acanthus, but Hoskins has a lot to answer for by working for mamon eh.
The detailing will do nothing to make this nothing more than a pile of stone which should be delivered right back to the inevitable Chinese quarry.
Time warp Aberdeen
#8 Posted by Time warp Aberdeen on 21 Sep 2011 at 09:04 AM
After all that and to end up with this nostalgic and insensitive proposal. It's wrong on so many levels.
#9 Posted by anon on 21 Sep 2011 at 09:35 AM
Get a life, the design is supported by the leader of the RIAS
Time warp Aberdeen
#10 Posted by Time warp Aberdeen on 21 Sep 2011 at 09:52 AM
oh well then that makes it ok
#11 Posted by anon on 21 Sep 2011 at 09:57 AM
richard heggie
#12 Posted by richard heggie on 21 Sep 2011 at 10:11 AM
Any more images or details of this building available? The comments from RIAS suggest they've seen more than just the two visuals above :
Come off it Neil!!!!
#13 Posted by Come off it Neil!!!! on 21 Sep 2011 at 10:13 AM

The voice of the profession in Scotland? Not an architect - and not a decent critic either it would seam as he has no compunction about pronouncing publically on the quality of the design and materials from a single artists rendering...
Once again I'm wondering why I bother with my subscription...
#14 Posted by anon on 21 Sep 2011 at 10:22 AM
He will have been supported by all the RIAS council and the President! Move on.
#15 Posted by urbanrealm on 21 Sep 2011 at 10:30 AM
Richard - a design statement has been released (as below). Final plans and drawings will be released "shortly".
MacLeod house, as it stands today, is credited to John Smith circa 1835 – the first city architect of Aberdeen. The house contains many architectural features common in the work of John Smith at that period and is very much in the style akin to Gothic Revival. The architectural keys within the house which are reflected in the clubhouse are:

• Granite facades, of coursed rubble with dressed details throughout
• Steep, ornate gables on all 4 facades
• High chimneys that relate to principle spaces within
• Ornamental skew detailing along with a broken eaves line
• Hierarchy of windows

This style can be seen through the city and includes many Archibald Simpson buildings. Typically the style was reserved for the larger houses, churches and prominent civic or public buildings. It is clearly differentiated from the Baronial Style (also common in this period) with its use of vertical elements to emphasise height, extensive areas of glazing and heavy use of decorative architectural components and detailing.
#16 Posted by MajorTom on 21 Sep 2011 at 12:13 PM
It does not look like Treblinka, Alex. It does however bear more than a passing resemblance to Birkenau. Compare the second picture to this:
richard heggie
#17 Posted by richard heggie on 21 Sep 2011 at 12:43 PM
Thanks for Design Statement update at 15. Is there a full version of this document available, or are those three paragraphs all there is at the moment? Any link available?
Is this the beginning of a new Gothic Revival-Revival Movement?
Meanwhile more comment available here :
noah murney
#18 Posted by noah murney on 21 Sep 2011 at 13:24 PM
This gets my vote for the very next possible carbuncle award. Perhaps a new category is in order - "Most Shameless Example of Landscape Desecration and Complete Lack of Design Credibility" ?

The suggestion that this is in some way 'Scottish' is grossly insulting.

The RIAS should be ashamed for endorsing this abomination.
#19 Posted by anon on 21 Sep 2011 at 13:33 PM
#20 Posted by Boss on 21 Sep 2011 at 13:39 PM

Alasdair Stephen
#21 Posted by Alasdair Stephen on 21 Sep 2011 at 15:28 PM
People should read the Scotsman's article before criticising Neil Baxter. The most you can say is that he is being diplomatic and not wanting to offend Acanthus. It is the journalist that says he is 'full of praise'. Nowhere does he say anything nice about the design. Instead he diverts by talking about material and detailing - something we cannot judge from two photomontages.
#22 Posted by FW on 21 Sep 2011 at 18:34 PM
I respectfully request that you re read the Scotsman Alasdair. Mr Baxter could not have been more gushing in his praise of the project and the design.
Frank Lloyd Wright
#23 Posted by Frank Lloyd Wright on 21 Sep 2011 at 19:21 PM
The Trump Dump!
Mies VDR
#24 Posted by Mies VDR on 21 Sep 2011 at 19:43 PM
Frank! I thought you were dead!
#25 Posted by Al on 21 Sep 2011 at 20:03 PM
Ooh a new supermarket from the early 90s. Let's hope its Waitrose. We could do with one of them.
#26 Posted by Al on 21 Sep 2011 at 20:09 PM
Inspiration taken from the back side of the Bon Accord Centre and John Lewis then.
Carlo M
#27 Posted by Carlo M on 21 Sep 2011 at 20:22 PM
Won't be renewing my subs, nothing to do with Trump or his building, but this is just daft.

Mr Baxter said golfers arriving from across the globe to play at Menie could not fail to be impressed by the clubhouse. "It does harken back to a long history," he said. "This is not a work of overt modernism. It's a work that connects with the historic, but it's honest in the sense that it's not saying that this is a building that dates from 1850. "It's a building that might have echoes of architecture from 1850, but it's very much of now.
"And the quality of the materials is exemplary, and that always tells in a building."
Frank Lloyd Wright
#28 Posted by Frank Lloyd Wright on 21 Sep 2011 at 22:05 PM
No chance Ludwig. Got a couple of kitchen extensions on the go that have been keeping me busy.
#29 Posted by Cateran on 21 Sep 2011 at 22:49 PM
As with all designs you should wait until it's finished, but I think that even with 100years of ivy to hide it it looks like being one of the most gross structures to be foisted on this country. Could it be the start of a new movement - Amero-Scahtch? It looks so bad it would look out of place in Cumbernauld.
noah murney
#30 Posted by noah murney on 23 Sep 2011 at 01:04 AM
Anon - in basic architectural terms-

Mr Baxter is not the 'leader of all the architects in Scotland'. I never voted for him, and I don't know any architects who did.

He's not an architect. He hasn't put in the minimum 7 hard years to be qualified as one, and he hasn't designed or built any buildings.

My understanding is that he is very talented and well qualified in the field of PR, as testified by the unashamed archi-blarney extolled in the articles referred to in other comments here.

The RIAS is a voluntary organisation. No Scottish architect is obliged to be a member (despite what mr t might have been led to believe).

Many architects in Scotland deliberately chose not to join the rias because of it's complete and utter irrelevance to their daily lives, professionaly and politically.

I have to assume that the endorsement-by-faint-praise quotes are politic, which I sympathise with in general in these difficult economic circumstances.

However, in the context of this development I really wish that the self-elected representatives of Scottish Architecture (ie those rent-a-quotes always referred to in connection with development matters) would TAKE A STAND.

Does the rias really stand for excellence in architectural quality as they always bang on about in their PR releases and awards? Or is this a standard they're willing to drop whenever an exploitative developer decides that their questionable (in this case, quite clearly delusional) personal tastes/avarice over-rule matters of social responsibility and architectural quality?

If the rias endorses this pile, then any rias award is completely worthless.
#31 Posted by FW on 23 Sep 2011 at 08:13 AM
Excellent response Mr Murney particularly about the rias and the awards but the rent a quotes you refer to have TAKEN A STAND, but in other fora, newpaper and media.
Carlo M
#32 Posted by Carlo M on 23 Sep 2011 at 09:34 AM
IMHO Mr Baxter is a loose cannon. I remember his comments approving the demolition of the Distillers in Edinburgh and supporting an awful housing proposal in its place. Also Malcolm Fraser, Andy Mac, Alan D Peter Wilson and other rent a quotes have been very critical in the newspapers
stephen miles
#33 Posted by stephen miles on 23 Sep 2011 at 10:43 AM
From email bulletin today: RIAS are holding a strategic review seminar...... perhaps a worthwhile forum to raise some much needed questions of the RIAS??............
Venue: The Filmhouse, Cinema 2, 88 Lothian Road, Edinburgh
Date: Friday 14th October, 10.30am to 12.30pm with a sandwich lunch at the RIAS afterwards
Cost: Free or £5 if you wish to join us for a sandwich lunch (with a glass of wine) at the RIAS.

Both RIAS and RIBA are looking at their future strategies with a view to addressing specific needs and interests of our respective memberships. As many Scottish architects are joint members we felt that a shared event with the chief executives of both organisations and senior members would be the most appropriate way of gathering thoughts and opinions to inform our ongoing endeavours.

How to book:
To book your place, please email Soni Rosendahl with your name, practice and RIAS number indicating if you would like to join us for lunch or not.

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