After beginning her career at the prestigious Loch Lomond Golf Club aged just 16, Alison Rodger shares her amazing journey from part-time assistant in the housekeeping department to becoming the exclusive resort's Assistant General Manager. By Karen Peattie


AT college and training to become a nursery nurse, Alison Rodger was a 16-year-old embarking on what she thought was her dream career.

But when she was offered a part-time evening job as a turndown assistant in the housekeeping department at Loch Lomond Golf Club, little did she know that this early introduction to the hospitality industry would change her life.

Although she lived locally, Alison had never heard of the prestigious private members’ club so discovering a five-star world at Rossdhu House, once the ancestral home of the Colquhoun Clan on the banks of Loch Lomond, was a big surprise.

“I didn’t know Loch Lomond Golf Club existed and I didn’t know anything about the hospitality industry so it was fascinating to discover this world of luxury virtually on my doorstep,” recalls Alison. 

“I was looking for some evening work while I was at college and when a friend told me she had got a job at the Club and that they were looking for people, I got in touch and started work almost straight away.”

With just six rooms in the main house and eight in the Carriage House at the time, Alison “absolutely loved” her new job. 

“It was such a lovely, friendly atmosphere and everyone was so welcoming,” she says. 

“I made friends with other members of staff and felt really at home there. More than 20 years on I can honestly say that it still has the same ‘family’ feel.”

Before long, Alison was given an opportunity to work in Loch Lomond Golf Club’s membership department, gaining valuable admin skills and helping to make the system more efficient. 

She also worked on reception, trained as a night auditor and took charge of the reservations department.

Visiting a friend in Spain gave Alison time to decide what she wanted to do and after enjoying the sun, sea and sand for 10 months, she returned to Scotland to be warmly welcomed back into the fold at Loch Lomond Golf Club.

“I realised how much I missed the Club so to come back as reservations manager was amazing,” says Alison. 

“By this time, we had created our Spa and started to offer Country Pursuits such as clay pigeon shooting and fly fishing. There were more bedrooms and more staff – it was really exciting.”

Alison continued to make progress, becoming head of department for club reservations before being appointed business development manager then soon joining the senior management team. 

In 2020, impressed by Alison’s progress and commitment to Loch Lomond Golf Club, the General Manager, Bill Donald, asked her to join him as Assistant General Manager.

“I’ve worked here all of my adult life – apart from my little gap year in Spain,” laughs Alison. 

“It’s a great place to work and it’s the people who make it a great place to work – staff and Members. I love the family feel of the Club and the way all the different departments work together and help each other.

“And yes, I still help out my colleagues in the housekeeping and other departments when needs be because our ultimate goal is to provide the best possible experience for our Members as they spend precious time here and make memories.

“I have seen Members’ children grow up and been with them on their journey in the same way they have been with me on my career progression.”

Reeling off the history of Rossdhu House, the clubhouse of Loch Lomond Golf Club which is home for visiting Members, their families and guests who can choose to stay in one of 54 luxury bedrooms situated between Rossdhu House and a series of beautifully appointed lodges around the estate, Alison describes herself as “one of the luckiest people”.

She adds: “There are so many opportunities here and it is such a beautiful location – there are times when I really can’t believe that this is where I work and I am grateful to everyone here who has encouraged me, believed in me and helped me forge a successful career in the hospitality industry.

“No matter what job you do here you are encouraged to bring ideas to the table and be creative. 

“There is a very open culture and we all work hard to continually improve our services for our Members. 

“We often talk about hospitality being a ‘people’ business but it really is – it’s the people who make it so special.” 

Closed at Christmas and during January, the Club offers an extremely generous holiday package alongside an annualised hours contract offering a perfect work-life balance. 

There are plenty of perks too, from discounted rates for golf, country pursuits such as clay pigeon shooting and spa treatments to a cycle to work scheme, meals in the staff canteen and retail discounts in both the spa and golf pro shop.

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  • This article was paid for and brought to you by Loch Lomond Golf Club