Golf Community Reviews



There was a problem rendering your image gallery. Please make sure that the folder you are using in the Simple Image Gallery Pro plugin tags exists and contains valid image files. The plugin could not locate the folder: media/k2/galleries/3322
Text Size
Friday, February 13, 2015

New Money Solidifies Established Golf Communities

Written by 
Rate this article
(0 votes)

        There are two ways to look at the sale of a golf community. One is to say, "Oops, they were in trouble, and the owner had to sell." The other way is to understand that, with an improving economy and a wealthy baby boomer cohort, well-organized and developed golf communities may just be a good buy. Follow the smart money and you will know the difference.
        Smart-money investment companies have announced in the past week the purchase of two well known golf communities. In Florida, the venerable Pelican Point Golf & Country Club in Venice, about an hour south of Sarasota, was sold for nearly $17 million to a New York City based investment company. Pelican Point was developed 20 years ago and includes 27 holes of golf designed by Ted McAnlis. With 1,355 home sites and 800 single-family homes, Pelican Point is the quintessential mid-range Florida golf community with a mix of villas, condos and single-family residences. Villas are priced from the low $200s and single-family homes from the low $300s.
Wintergreen Resort #16, Devil's KnobThings are looking up -- and down -- on and around the Devil's Knob Golf Club at the Wintergreen Resort, where both ridge-top condos and the fairways have commanding views of the surrounding mountains.

        The new owner, Lex Pelican LP, is a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) that owns 13,000 hotel and resort rooms in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean. The REIT is traded on the financial exchange.
        At Nellysford, VA's Wintergreen Resort, residents, club members and potential residents have been waiting patiently for Jim Justice to snag a new owner for the residential resort, located about 45 minutes from Charlottesville. Justice bought the combination ski and golf community three years ago after breathing new life into the Greenbrier Resort in his native West Virginia. But after investing an estimated $12 million is infrastructure upgrades at Wintergreen, he either tired of his investment or thought better of what might be needed in the future and announced the community, its two golf courses and ski operations were up for sale. That, of course, made everyone with an interest in Wintergreen nervous.
        After his initial investments, "Justice was not putting anything into improving the facilities going forward," says Steve Marianella, a Wintergreen real estate specialist. "Also, the uncertainty associated with a potential sale had affected real estate negatively."
        The new buyers are the New York Stock Exchange traded EPR Properties, another REIT. A purchase price was not disclosed but the firm maintains a $3.9 billion portfolio that includes entertainment, education and recreation investments. Another company, Pacific Group Resorts, will lease Wintergreen and its facilities from EPR and will manage the community, something it has done successfully at three ski resorts and four golf courses.
        "We now know who will own and operate [Wintergreen], and both parties have impressive track records and capital," Marianella added. "Time will tell but we are excited about the future prospects."
WintergreenMtnViewThis is the view from a 2 BR, 2 BA furnished ridge-top condo currently listed for $214,900 at Wintergreen.  Photo courtesy of Susan Phillips
        The announcement by the Justice organization that Wintergreen was for sale was surprising on two levels: First, why, after only a little more than a year had the gazillionaire decided on an about face? And second, why announce an obviously anxiety-inducing potential sale so publicly and erode the perceived value of Wintergreen, which has a lot going for it, including one of the better ski areas south of New England, two outstanding golf courses, and extremely reasonable real estate, priced to attract a second-home crowd from the Washington, D.C., area as well as retirees looking for clean mountain air, excellent golf and the occasional jaunt on the Blue Ridge Parkway, adjacent to the community.  The golf is excellent, 45 holes of it by Rees Jones and Ellis Maples; I wrote about the golf courses some years ago after my first visit.
        Steve Marianella is offering a number of outstanding properties for sale currently, including a 2 BR, 2 BA condo and breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains from one of the highest points in the community. The unit, which is a short walk to the Devil's Knob golf course and clubhouse, comes fully furnished and with a fireplace in the living room and a the potential for excellent rental income.  Its list price is just $214,900. Please contact me and I will put you in touch with Steve, who can provide information on this home and dozens more for sale at Wintergreen, where everyone believes the future looks as bright as a sunrise over the Shenandoah Valley.

Read 4324 times Last modified on Friday, 13 February 2015 15:17
Submit to DeliciousSubmit to DiggSubmit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to StumbleuponSubmit to TechnoratiSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn
Larry Gavrich

This blog was conceived and is published by me, Larry Gavrich, a former corporate communications executive who founded HomeOnTheCourse, LLC, in 2005.  Our firm advises baby boomers and others seeking a lifestyle in which golf is a major component.  My wife Connie and I own a home in Connecticut (not on a golf course) and a condo at Pawleys Plantation in Pawleys Island, SC, on a Jack Nicklaus layout.  We began our search for our home on the course more than 15 years ago, and the challenges of the search inspired me to research golf communities and write objective reviews of them.


Now on Sale

Back Nine BookCover

  • The only book about golf communities in the last 10 years.
  • 156-page step-by-step guide to finding your dream golf home.
  • Info on nearly 100 golf communities the author has visited.
  • Paperback version costs less than a sleeve of Pro VIs.

Here is what the experts are saying:

“The book is chocked full of information…applicable to anyone looking for a move to the Southeast regardless of whether they are looking for a golf community or not.” — John LaFoy, golf architect (Linville Ridge CC, CC of Charleston, The Neuse GC)

“Larry has done a tremendous amount of work and anyone — like me — who is looking to search for a golf home now or in a few years needs this book.” — Brad Chambers, golf blogger, ShootingYourAge.com

“Wow!  What a thorough piece of work…a must for anyone moving South. This book will help many people.” — Brett Miller, owner and founder of MMA, Inc, a golf industry consultancy

Buy It Now at Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com.