Adam Schupak of Morning Read provides a detailed look at the expanding industry of golf course renovations. He provides details on a number of projects that are part of the more than 1,000 major renovations since 2006 with a combined value of $3 billion.
The article reads, in part:
After the 2015 RBC Heritage, Harbour Town Golf Links, a famed Pete Dye (ASGCA Fellow) design, closed for five months and was re-grassed with Celebration Bermuda on the tee boxes, fairways and rough. New irrigation was installed, to increase sustainability. A 4,000 square-foot locker room, triple the size of the old one, was built.
Ownership didn’t stop there. It also renovated Pete Dye’s Heron Point and hired Davis Love III to refurbish Atlantic Dunes. All told, the renovation of the three courses and clubhouses is estimated at $100 million.
What’s happening at Sea Pines is indicative of an industry-wide shift from new facilities to sprucing up existing ones, to stand out in an era of oversupply. Those who look strictly at the number of course closures outranking course openings as a measure of the health of the game are seeing only half of the picture. Since 2006, there have been nearly 1,000 major renovations in the U.S., at $3 billion, according to a March report by the National Golf Foundation. Almost 100 courses re-opened last year after full 18-hole renovations. The upside to spending on capital improvements is simple, said Peter Nanula, principal of Concert Golf Partners, a boutique owner-operator of high-end private clubs.
“If you just leave a club in the deferred-maintenance, debt-laden, poorly-managed situation that it is in, you’re going to keep atrophying,” he said. “You’re going to keep losing members. New prospects are going to realize it’s a tired property and decide they don’t want that. You have to be doing capital projects or you’re falling behind.”
The complete article can be seen here.