Categories: golf

The wait is nearly over, and the excitement is building as The Open is set to return to Northern Ireland. After a thrilling and historic event in 2019, we are proud to welcome back this prestigious championship, where the world's top golfers will once again grace the stunning fairways of a world-famous course. With less than two years to go, get ready for a golfing spectacle that promises memorable moments against the backdrop of breathtaking landscapes and warm hospitality.

The Open is golf's oldest championship, tracing its roots to 1860. Back then, eight professional golfers assembled at Prestwick in Scotland for a tournament to determine who would be the champion golfer. The winner was to receive the Challenge Belt, a prize crafted from red Moroccan leather and worth £25. To this day, The Open still attracts the world's best players, although the winner receives a prize worth substantially more - he'll lift the Claret Jug, earn the title 'Champion Golfer' and pocket over a million pounds in earnings.

Taking place at a UK-based course each year, in 2019 the Championship returned to Northern Ireland after a 68-year absence. It had been a long wait for Royal Portrush to host its second Open, and much had changed in that time, including the creation of two new holes - the seventh and eighth. It's expected that we'll see even more changes ahead of 2025, with confirmation of the course layout yet to be finalised.

In anticipation of the Championship landing back on our shores in less than two years, we've taken a quick look back at the success of 2019 and what is to come in 2025.

The 148th Open, 2019

In an atmosphere at Royal Portrush which fizzled with expectation, the players enjoyed a warm welcome to a (mostly) sunny Portrush, with homegrown talents Lowry, McIlroy, McDowell & Clarke receiving phenomenal support from fans. Tiger Woods spoke for all the players when he described the Royal Portrush Golf Course as ‘unbelievable’ and praised the people of Northern Ireland as ‘absolutely fantastic’, with many of the international golfers taking advantage of their downtime to visit the world-famous attractions within driving distance of their location on the Causeway Coastal Route. For the players with a local connection to Northern Ireland, there was evident pride at the impressive standard of Royal Portrush. Prior to the event, Rory McIlroy, who lifted the Claret Jug at Royal Liverpool in 2014, said, "For me, Northern Ireland really is made for golf. I’d urge anyone who hasn’t played on our of our many superb courses to give it a go. It really is one special place to play the game."

Graeme McDowell soaked up the momentous occasion of playing such an important golf championship in Northern Ireland, saying, "It was such a special day. Getting off that first tee this morning. I literally had a tear in my eye."

There was also a close connection to Northern Ireland for the ultimate winner, Irishman Shane Lowry, as his caddie during The 148th Open in 2019, Brian (Bo) Martin, grew up only a few hours drive away in the town of Ardglass. Upon winning The 148th Open, Lowry was quoted saying, "Honestly that’s the most incredible day I’ve ever had on the golf course. I honestly can’t explain what it was like. I said to Bo walking off the 17th tee, we might never have a day like this on the golf course again. So let’s enjoy this next half hour."

The 148th Open will go down in history as one of the great Opens after a week-long party in Royal Portrush ended with a popular winner lifting the Claret Jug for his maiden major victory. Shane Lowry was sublime on the Dunluce Links as a scintillating Saturday put him in control of the Championship and he kept his nerve to hold off Tommy Fleetwood on a memorable Sunday. It was fitting that as The Open returned to Northern Ireland for the first time in over fifty years, it was a man from the island of Ireland who walked away as Champion Golfer – the county Offaly native thrilling the partisan crowds en route to a six-stroke triumph.

Interesting stats from The 148th Open Championship:

  • 2019 marked the return of the Championship to Royal Portrush for only the second time in 68 years
  • 156 golfers took place in The Open in 2019 at Royal Portrush
  • 237,750 fans attended, attracting a record attendance for the Championship outside of St Andrews, the 'Home of Golf'
  • More than 5,400 hours of television coverage were broadcast to hundreds of millions of viewers globally
  • The Championship generated over £100 million in economic benefit for Northern Ireland

The 153rd Open, 2025 

The Open is confirmed to return to Royal Portrush Golf Club between 13th - 20th July 2025.
Northern Ireland will make a swift and triumphant return to hosting duties at the now infamous golf location, situated on the beautiful Causeway Coastal Route which received universal acclaim during its 2019 tenure. The course delivered sensational performances for many of the world's greatest golfers, most notably Irishman Shane Lowry, and it is hoped that this will continue. Having previously attracted a record attendance for the Championship, it's expected that Royal Portrush will aim to build on this in 2025, as excitement begins to build already. Max Faulkner won the Claret Jug when Royal Portrush hosted The Open for the first time in 1951 and The 153rd Open will be only the third time the Championship has been held there. 

This marks an exciting new chapter in the history of golf’s original championship, and fans look forward to another outstanding showcase on a world-famous course. Following the success of The 148th Open at Royal Portrush in 2019, excitement for its return is already building and premium experiences for the Championship are now available to book. Fans wishing to guarantee their place at the famous Dunluce Links ahead of a ticket ballot opening in summer 2024 can already book their place on a range of available packages, including six fully-inclusive experiences – Champions, Engravers, Caddies, Origins Suites, Scorers Premium and Scorers – each offering a unique way to enjoy the Championship and watch the drama unfold. 

General admission ticketing information is to follow in 2024, when the official balloting system for 2025 goes live.


Golf fans, get ready for an unforgettable 2025, as the much anticipated 153rd Open promises to showcase the best of Northern Ireland, both on and off the course.

Royal Portrush Golf Club
Links Golf Course
Royal Portrush Golf Club

Founded in 1888, the legendary Royal Portrush Golf Club has two Championship Courses - the renowned Dunluce Course and the smaller, but equally enjoyable Valley Course. Proud Hosts of The 148th Open in 2019.

The 153rd Open Championship
The 153rd Open Championship

It may have taken 68 years for The Open to return to Northern Ireland but it was more than worth the wait as home favourite Shane Lowry emerged triumphant at Royal Portrush. The Open will now head back to the County Antrim coast in 2025 for The 153rd Open.