Mar 23, 2015
Arizona’s Best

(RIO VERDE, AZ)  Rio Verde Country Club and Golf Community, located in the foothills of the McDowell Mountains at the edge of the Tonto National Forest northeast of Scottsdale, has been voted the No. 1 “Private Golf Course” and “Active Adult Community” by Ranking Arizona: the Best of Arizona Business. The rankings, published annually by Arizona Business Magazine, include more than 250 categories and 2000-plus entries. The Lehman Design Group renovated Rio Verde’s Quail Run and White Wing golf courses, a $6.5 million project modernizing both layouts while retaining their “soft desert” playability. Par-72 Quail Run – playing to 6,602-yards – sports a traditional design reminiscent of America’s great Midwestern golf venues. The par-70, 6,535-yard White Wing features links-style elements such as fairway mounding, open green fronts and stacked-sod bunkering.

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Mar 20, 2015
Vintage Save

(NORTH AUGUSTA, SC) With the Masters just a few weeks away, our thoughts naturally turn to Augusta. This time to North Augusta, just across the border in South Carolina, home of Mount Vintage Plantation Golf Club. The club’s 27 holes are highly reminiscent of Augusta National with its hilly terrain and treacherous greens. The club, which is a great choice for those looking to get in a round during a visit to the Masters, has been in and out of the news of late. Forced to close just over a year ago after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the club then reopened last April under bank management. Last month, it was announced that KemperSports, which manages Bandon Dunes Golf Resort and Chambers Bay among others, has been hired by the bank to manage the facility. While that was good news for golfers, the news wasn’t so good for the club’s previous owner. Mike Hooker has been ordered by a South Carolina judge to pay $341,201 to settle a lawsuit brought by a group of investors who put money into the private club to keep it afloat. According to The Augusta Chronicle, Hooker (who represented himself at trial) said, “I shouldn’t have bought the club. I did it with the intention of preserving the property owners’ values.”

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Mar 18, 2015
This Phoenix Won’t Rise

(JACKSON TOWNSHIP, OH) Forget the fabled phoenix rising from its ashes. In the end, a methane gas leak did in the Phoenix Golf Links outside Columbus, Ohio. Of all the reasons that a number of golf courses around the country have closed, this is by the far one of the most unusual. The course was built in 2000 to protect the earthen cap over a country landfill, presumably to help prevent a public nuisance such as a gas leak. A lawsuit or two later, the course became the responsibility of the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio, which discovered that running a golf course was not all that much fun. Or profitable. After trying unsuccessfully to find someone else to run it, the agency decided to shutter the course permanently. According to The Columbus Dispatch, plans are to “fill in the sand bunkers, take out the cart paths and level the slopes to provide for easier maintenance and mowing of the property and to better protect the landfill cap.” 

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Mar 16, 2015
A Year to Remember

(KIAWAH ISLAND, SC) Kiawah Island’s 2015 Spring Tour of Homes is April 2. Might be a good time to check out why sales on Kiawah Island topped $311 million last year. The news was all good for the acclaimed destination and its private communities, as it was is ranked the #1 island in the United States and #2 island in the world according to the 2014 Conde Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards. Real Estate Scorecard named Sasanqua Spa  no. 1 on its list of the Top 10 Spa Resorts in the Southeast and Central America. For the fifth year in a row, Barron’s Penta Magazine ranked Kiawah Island among their list of the 15 Best Places for Second Homes. The Sanctuary Hotel won Forbes coveted AAA Five Diamond Award for the 8th year in a row. And in 2014, the Cassique neighborhood saw 28 closed sales for the year (7 homes and 21 lots), exceeding all closed sales from the previous 3 years combined. 

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Mar 13, 2015
South Florida Soars

(PALM BEACH GARDENS, FL) How’s the South Florida luxury real estate market, you ask? $40 million in sales at the just-opened boutique luxury condominium community of Azure point to signs it’s doing pretty well, thank you. The 113-unit, 14-acre waterfront Azure development is offering condos ranging in price from $900,000 to $2 million. The developer, Frankel Enterprises (which had a hand in Jupiter’s Valencia, San Michele and Admiral’s Cove communities), reports that they have sold 30 out of the 46 residences being offered in the first phase. Some of Azure’s unique features include sun-filled open living areas, large kitchens and luxurious master suites, nine-foot ceilings, and porcelain tile floors to create a bright, modern interior. Wide terraces overlook the protected deep water yacht harbor with dockage for boats up to 120 feet. There will two buildings of condominiums; the first building is expected to be completed by mid-2016.


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