Sunday, November 20, 2016

The Week That Was, november 20, 2016

     Just three years ago, Pacific Links International bought Dove Canyon Golf Club and told the Los Angeles Times that it planned to buy “two or three more” in Southern California. Well, the spirit may have been willing, but the cash flow was weak. Not only did PLI fail to buy another club in the area, but now it’s sold Dove Canyon. The new owner of the 25-year-old club and its Jack Nicklaus “signature” course is SJS Tomorrow LLC, an entity that appears to be affiliated with a South Korean clothing manufacturer named Sae-A Trading Company. A price hasn’t been reported, but the Orange County Register says that SJS owns Steele Canyon Golf Club in suburban San Diego. Dove Canyon is the fifth U.S. golf property that PLC, a Chinese/Canadian company that operates an international network of limited-access membership golf clubs, has sold since early 2015. Gone from the company’s shrinking portfolio are three properties on Hawaii’s O’ahu Island (Royal Hawaiian Golf Club, Kapolei Golf Club, and Olomana Golf Links) as well as DragonRidge Country Club in suburban Las Vegas, Nevada and Pete Dye Golf Club in Bridgeport, West Virginia. According to the Times, when PLI bought Dove Canyon the club “had never made a profit and had been losing nearly $1 million a year.” No word on how the club is doing today.

     The battle appears to be over, but Christine Brennan is still firing deservedly sharp criticism at the U.S. Golf Association over its insistence on holding next year’s U.S. Women’s Open at Donald “the Educator” Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey. Less than a month after she took her first shot, the USA Today columnist skewers the USGA for being “paralyzed by a rich, white man who has ridiculed almost everyone but his cronies and peers” and accuses it of being without “a spine” or “a moral compass.” Like so many other women, she wonders why one of golf’s most important institutions continues to do business with “a man who bragged on video that he sexually assaults women.” For what it’s worth, the USGA responded by saying that it “has not changed its position on the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open at this time.”

     Donald “the President-Elect” Trump isn’t the only wealthy golf-course owner who won an election this month. By a wide margin, the people of West Virginia have selected Jim Justice, the owner of the Greenbrier, to be their governor. “I want us to quit being 50th in everything,” Justice said during his campaign. He ran as a Democrat, though he tried his best to keep his party affiliation a secret.

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