Mar 07, 2013 | 09:37 AM

Dubai’s New Hoteliers

“The Race to Dubai,” the European Tour’s season-long, big-bucks competition that culminates in a high-stakes event in the fall, isn’t the only game in town. Dubai, the most westernized of the seven sheikdoms within the United Arab Emirates, is also attracting big players in the hospitality industry. Last fall, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, occupying several floors of a 1,164-foot-tall skyscraper, claimed the title of the World’s Tallest Hotel in the Guinness Book of World Records. Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which includes Westin, St. Regis, Sheraton, and six other lodging brands, is currently relocating its global headquarters from Stamford, Conn. to Dubai to take advantage of its location for business travel to emerging destinations in Asia. “With 80% of Starwood’s pipeline coming from rapidly growing markets, it is simply not possible to lead a truly global business from a boardroom in Connecticut,” said Frits van Paasschen, Starwood’s president and CEO. Fine and dandy. But will stay-and-play packages to be part of the equation?

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Mar 06, 2013 | 10:57 AM

What’s In A Name?

The St. Andrews Links Trust, which oversees operations on the seven courses in the “auld grey toon,” is rightfully very protective of its famous name. So few were surprised that the Trust is considering a trademark fight against a new Tom Weiskopf-designed layout being built outside of town to be called St. Andrews International Golf Links, or that they were able to convince Scotland’s International Property Office to stop the St. Andrews Golf Company, which has been making clubs for 132 years, from trademarking its name. However, do they really need a co-existence agreement with the St. Andrew's School For Girls in South Africa? It reads, in part, that “The respective parties will at all relevant times take such steps as may be necessary to mitigate any confusion or deception that may arise between their respective trade marks.” Just in case anyone was calling South Africa to arrange a tee time on the Old Course.

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Mar 05, 2013 | 09:56 AM

Open and Shut Case

Last week, a superior court jury in Spokane, Washington, ordered the Spokane Country Club to pay more than $500,000 in damages to four of the club’s women members who had sued the club after being denied the full benefits of membership simply because of their gender. The unanimous verdict capped a five-year legal battle based on the club’s practice of allowing male members premium tee times and barring women from certain areas of the clubhouse. Oh, the irony! As it happens, Spokane CC has made golf headlines only one other time in its 115-year existence—in 1946, when it stepped up as the first club to host the U.S. Women’s Open. They’ve come a long way, baby, just in the wrong direction.

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Mar 04, 2013 | 01:30 PM

Where There’s Hope

For years, Bob Hope was synonymous with golf, Palm Springs, and especially golf in Palm Springs, where the early-season Bob Hope Classic took place. The famous comedian is gone, having died in 2003 at the age of 100, but his Palm Springs home is still there, and on the market. According to the New York Times, the 23,366-square-foot home, designed in 1973 by California Modernist architect John Lautner, “was built to resemble a volcano, with three visorlike arches and an undulating concrete roof, a hole at its center opening a courtyard to the sky.” The 6-bedroom, 10-bath house has indoor and outdoor pools, a pond, tennis court, and a putting green, of course. It’s listed with Ann Eysenring of Partners Trust Real Estate of Beverly Hills (where else?) for $50 million. No word if a spot in the Humana Challenge pro-am, as Hope’s tourney is now called, is included.

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