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Old 12-31-2017, 09:25 AM
 
11 posts, read 12,709 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beer belly View Post
Thanks, sometimes you see a place and it hits you...it just feels right. Best of luck in you new home, it is a beautiful place.
Thank you...and gatorbyter as well...it really is a beautiful and fiscally sound development. Coming from NJ (where starting tomorrow we can't write off over 6k of our property taxes any longer with the 10k cap) it does make more sense for us. Counting the days! The only decision is really build or buy resale, as there are a few very nice resale choices in our 350k price range...this means no renting while building wait, but we also have to weigh the fact that we could build new for almost equal price (especially with the buy in for the clubs getting waived with new construction). That's a 20k bonus that makes building about equal. Not bad decisions to have to make! Happy 2018 to all. See you soon!
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Old 01-09-2018, 10:31 AM
 
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The developer is selling The Clubs to Troon effective 1 February 2018. Not sure what this means, but I am sure we will hear a lot more about it.
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Old 01-09-2018, 03:42 PM
 
79 posts, read 99,734 times
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I just received the email.

Will The Clubs remain private, or we now going to have public play on the Courses? This is a huge concern for me, as public play often deteriorated course condition.

Steve
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Old 01-09-2018, 04:59 PM
 
81 posts, read 158,310 times
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A Letter On Behalf Of The Club Owners
Dear Valued Club Member,

Over the past 26 years, we have worked to create a unique community where residents and members can enjoy a timeless way of life. At the heart of the St. James Plantation community are The Clubs—an exclusive offering for members to enjoy the best that St. James has to offer, including 81 holes of golf, fine dining, fitness facilities and tennis. Together, we have built a community desired by people across the country who have chosen St. James Plantation as a place to live and enjoy their retirement years.

This lifestyle was our goal from the beginning when Homer Wright first broke ground on St. James Plantation in 1991. We also knew that the time would come when the community was fully established, at which point we would need to make important decisions regarding the future of St. James Plantation—particularly for The Clubs.

Owning and operating 81 holes of golf, along with social and dining clubs, as well as fitness and recreational facilities is no small undertaking. Twelve years ago, we realized that to better serve our members, The Clubs at St. James Plantation would need to bring on a partner to manage the facilities.

That partner was Troon and it’s why we are confident today in announcing our decision to sell The Clubs at St. James Plantation to Troon Golf. We entered into a purchase contract with Troon on December 20, 2017. Troon Golf is a part of Troon Privé, Troon’s private club management service, and focuses on elevating private clubs and creating a sustainable organization. By selling The Clubs, Troon will continue to bring even more best-in-class services to The Clubs, based off its experience managing properties across the U.S. and globe, ensuring The Clubs can stay relevant and up-to-date as the property grows over time.

Why Troon? While the decision to sell was not an easy one, we felt it was the best one to ensure the long-term sustainability of The Clubs and the community. This was not a decision we took lightly, but Troon has been a trusted partner in managing The Clubs at St. James and we are confident that they will continue to care for The Clubs and our members with the same level of service we have expected for the past twelve years. Troon also recognizes the future growth opportunities for St. James, as well as how special The Clubs are to members. We made sure to incorporate protections for members into our agreement to ensure members will continue to be the priority for Troon. This is something that was important to us as we made the decision.

Many of you may already be familiar with Troon, but for those who are not, Troon is the world’s leading golf management company and manages courses in 36 states and 31 countries. The company’s award-winning food and beverage division operates and manages more than 150 restaurants located at golf resorts, private clubs, daily fee golf courses and recreational facilities around the world, but is particularly known for managing first class clubs like The Clubs at St. James Plantation.

The ownership transition is scheduled to take effect on February 1, 2018, with both parties committed to a smooth and seamless transition for members.

Attached are frequently asked questions (FAQs) which provide additional information. We are also planning on hosting a series of meetings in the coming weeks to provide additional information about what this means for you and all our valued members and answer any of your questions one-on-one. To ensure we can have high-quality meetings, we are limiting the number to 40 members per session and ask that you RSVP to one of the available times.

***Meeting Info Deleted***

On behalf of the Club Owners,

Bobby Masters
St. James General Manager
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:04 PM
 
79 posts, read 99,734 times
Reputation: 41
I will comment that there was at least *some* expectation/hope that the family would give the Clubs to the residents, like the developer did at The Landings. Obviously the ole profit motive stepped in.

Now there is no control over access and dues, two very important issues, IMO.

Any info would be appreciated, as we are still up here in Minnesota.

Thanks!

Steve
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Old 01-09-2018, 07:21 PM
 
81 posts, read 158,310 times
Reputation: 61
There is also an FAQ but my log in is not working. I’ll get it reset tomorrow.
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Old 01-09-2018, 08:01 PM
 
79 posts, read 99,734 times
Reputation: 41
Mine didn't work either....
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Old 01-10-2018, 03:41 AM
 
4,985 posts, read 2,235,360 times
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Club Members
GENERAL

Q. What is the company announcing?

A. As you know, St. James Plantation is entering its final phases of development. As such, it is a natural
point for us to consider the long-term sustainability of The Clubs and ownership transition. Following an
assessment of The Clubs by an external consultant, and after examining the options and much
deliberation and much thought, we have made a business decision to sell The Clubs to Troon.
As many of you know, Troon is a strong operator and a proven strategic partner to this community. As
the new owner, Troon will continue to provide best-in-class services to The Clubs; while ensuring The
Clubs stay relevant and up-to-date as the property grows over time.
We are announcing this development to members of The Clubs and offering all members the
opportunity to learn more about the sale to Troon and ask questions. We have worked together with
Troon to identify a number of membership protections and these are outlined in the letter to Members,
the Frequently Asked Questions document and will also be shared in the upcoming meetings with
members.

Q. Why are The Clubs being sold?

A. Our members and the long-term sustainability of the Clubs has always been our priority, and now is
the best time to sell The Clubs. As you know, St. James Plantation is entering its final development
phases. As such, it is a natural point for us to consider the long-term sustainability of The Clubs and
ownership transition. Also, as part of the independent assessment, we learned that there is strong
demand right now for these assets and the value has increased quite significantly. We believe facilitating
a smooth sale now protects the long-term sustainability of The Clubs as well as their overall value.
Finally, but importantly, The Clubs are profitable, so this also makes them attractive to buyers, and we
were able to negotiate protection for members.

Q. Why sell The Clubs now?

A. The community development is entering its final phases of development. It’s a natural point for us to
focus on ensuring the long-term future of The Clubs. There are a few other reasons that the timing
makes sense now:
 Selling The Clubs is a consideration that has been in place for over a year, and after an
independent assessment, we learned there is strong demand right now for these assets and the
value has increased quite significantly. The market is the strongest it has been in recent
memory, so now is the best time to be able to sell and negotiate protection for members.
 A sale now, before we approach the sell-out of inventory in the community, means that Troon
still has the opportunity to secure new members.
 We are also reaching a natural time where the families who own the development company are
beginning another generational transition. Making a decision regarding The Clubs now ensures
we are putting protections in place for Club members.

Q. Why is Troon is purchasing The Clubs?

A. Troon recognizes how special The Clubs are, and appreciate the value of The Clubs. Troon has been a
trusted partner in managing The Clubs at St. James and we are confident that they will continue to care
for The Clubs and our members with the same level of service we have expected for the past twelve
years. Troon also recognizes the future growth opportunities for St. James, and they want to continue
their long-standing relationship

Q. Are The Clubs in financial trouble?

A. No, The Clubs are profitable and are not encumbered by any mortgage debt.

Q. Which clubs/courses [assets] are being sold?

A. The sale includes the golf courses, clubhouses and sports clubs at the Reserve, Founders, Members
and Players Club Facilities. Troon will also continue to lease and operate Tommy Thompson’s, the
Marina Food and Beverage facility.

Q. Who is the buyer?

A. We are selling The Clubs to Troon Golf, LLC, a strong operator of golf clubs, amenities and restaurants
and a proven strategic partner to this community.

Q. When is the sale expected to take place?

A. A purchase and sale agreement has been signed and the transition is scheduled to take place on
February 1, 2018.

Q. Are there plans to close any of the clubs/courses?

A. No. There are no plans to close any of The Clubs and courses.

Q. Will the sale mean changes to any of the current employees?

A. We expect little change with respect to how The Clubs are operated given than Troon currently
manages The Clubs and they are the buyer.

Q. What changes should we expect following the sale?

A. We anticipate very little changes for members. Troon recognizes how special The Clubs are, and
appreciate the value of The Clubs. This will allow them to maintain a unique and strong membership
community.

Q. Tell me about the new owner?

A. Troon Privé oversees a global portfolio of private clubs, providing an alternative to self-management
by contributing resources and working collaboratively with boards, owners, and members to define and
deliver each club’s unique vision. The Troon Privé team focuses on elevating private clubs by making
them relevant, healthy and sustainable for decades to come.
Troon is a strong operator and a proven strategic partner to this community. The company’s team
delivers first-class service that is focused on the member experience. They have been trusted partners in
managing The Clubs at St. James for more than 12 years. Troon recognizes the future growth
opportunities, as well as how special The Clubs at St. James are, and they want to continue their longstanding
relationship. Choosing to sell to Troon minimizes any disruptions that could occur with another
buyer. Troon anticipates a seamless transition, and they have advised us of Troon’s plans to continue
providing their first-class service for the members. Troon recognizes the value of The Clubs, and has
deep knowledge of our community and its traditions.
You might also be interested to know that Troon:
 Manages more than 200 properties world-wide and focuses on 4- and 5-star facilities. The
Troon team is extremely dedicated to maintaining the highest quality and service standards.
 Is the world’s largest golf management company, with more than 270 golf courses in its
portfolio.
 Specializes in homeowner association management, private residence clubs, estate
management and associated hospitality venues.
 Has an award-winning food and beverage division operation and manages more than 150
restaurants located at golf resorts, private clubs, daily fee golf courses and recreational facilities
around the world.
 57 Troon affiliated properties have been recipients of a “Top 100” ranking by national and
international publications.

Q. How can I learn more?

A. We are planning on hosting a series of meetings in the coming weeks to provide additional
information about what this means for our valued members and answer any of your questions one-onone.
To ensure we can have high-quality meetings, we are limiting the number to 40 members per
session. These meetings will be held the week of January 22 - 26, 2018.

Q. What protections will be in place for current members in terms of the current operational levels
and standards?

A. Troon has agreed to certain membership protections for all members for an extended period of time.
These protections will ensure that the Club operations and standards remain consistent into the future.
Protections include Troon’s commitment to continue to operate and maintain the Club Facilities in a
first-class manner and limits to dues increase. In addition, the Membership Plan and the advisory
committees will continue. Troon’s broad understanding of the global golf market will continue to
benefit the members at St. James as it has for over a decade. Finally, Troon’s insight into significant
trends coming to the industry will position The Clubs well for future success.

Q. Will my membership fees change?

It should be noted that Troon was actively involved in discussions about the purchase of The Clubs prior
to the recent fee increase and it was their decision to keep the increase in line with historical increase
levels. As part of their purchase of The Clubs and as outlined above, Troon has committed to maintain a
similar strategy and has agreed to limitations on such future increases in the near future. One of the
many benefits of working with Troon through this process was the benefit of knowing that Troon has
not underwritten its purchase of The Clubs based upon a highly accelerated fee structure that would not
be in keeping with the tradition established over the years. While we do anticipate annual dues
increases, we anticipate that they will remain in line with annual increases previously experienced by
the club members.

Q. Will I still be able to select my facilities use privileges option on an annual basis?

A. Yes. The Membership Plan provision for Signature Members to select among Golf, Sports or Social
membership privileges and dues on an annual basis will continue.

Q. Will I still be entitled to my refund?

A. Yes. If you currently have a Refundable Membership, you will continue to have the same
membership deposit refund rights.

Q. Will my buyer still be able to acquire my membership?


A. Yes. The purchaser of your St. James property will continue to be able to acquire a Signature
Membership, subject to approval of your purchaser’s membership application.


Q. Will the Membership Plan benefits, including family and guest privileges and other benefits
continue?

A. Troon will continue the current Membership Plan including family and guest privileges and member
benefits, but will have the right to amend the Membership Plan as the current club owner can do.

Q. Will all the amenities at The Clubs still be available?


A. Yes, all the amenities will still be available.

Q. Why were members not given an opportunity to buy The Clubs first?

A. From the independent assessment we learned that a new owner needs to be one that can invest in
the long-term growth of The Clubs, make quick decisions and also weather any downturns in the real
estate market. Our independent advisors indicated to us that club operations managed by members
often run into long-term challenges related to corporate governance, funding of capital reserves and
inconsistent leadership. There is strong market demand, and as a result, the value of The Clubs is much
higher than we anticipated. Selling now to a known partner allows us to get the best for our company
and our members. In addition, a sale of The Clubs to members would have required members to raise
significant capital to pay the purchase price.

Q. If I have questions for Troon, should I speak to club management?

A. Yes, please feel free to contact Dave Flinchbaugh, Assistant General Manager, with any questions
about Troon at deleted . He has been updated on the sale, and can answer related
questions. If you have questions for the St. James Plantation team, please don’t hesitate to reach out to
St. James General Manager Bobby Masters at deleted or Director of
Sales Dan Kingsbury at . (NOTE: since this is a public forum, I deleted email addresses, club members should know where to find them)

Q. Will we get a chance to meet with Troon?

A. Yes, we will be hosting a number of “Meet and Greet” events for you to interact with senior Troon
representatives and speak with them about the future of The Clubs. More information will be shared
about these events at a later date.

Q. Will the current associates continue to work for The Clubs?

A. As stated previously, Troon’s purchase is done with the understanding of how The Clubs at St. James
operate, and as such Troon views the staff as a key component to this investment. Based upon
discussions with Troon we are happy to confirm that all existing associates shall remain in place unless
they themselves choose to seek employment elsewhere.

Last edited by ditchoc; 01-10-2018 at 04:01 AM..
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Old 01-10-2018, 03:57 AM
 
4,985 posts, read 2,235,360 times
Reputation: 7151
From all appearances the message seems to be, nothing is changing except The Club owners. Of course the owner has the final say the ultimate direction of The Clubs future.

As far as the residents buying The Clubs, the message seems to be; it was worth a lot, the developer wanted to sell while the market was hot, Troon had the money, and the residents could not afford it.

The marketing angle seemed to be; its a fast paced market and in order to keep up The Clubs needs to be able to adapt quickly, more so than the typical resident owned facilities.

What will Troon do in the future? Who can say but their track record has been generally good.

I don't golf but feedback I get from golfers seems to be good. My biggest concern are the restaurants. If you are going to spend $50-$100 on a meal, there are a lot of good choices on the island and in Southport that do a superior job to those on plantation. Of course The Clubs are going to nail you for minimum charges whether you eat there or not.

Also Note:
"The Club Advisory Committee is focused on representing the best interests of club members to club management and, in turn, to the developer. Consistent with this role, we want to convey our highly enthusiastic response and support to the announcement that the developer has sold the Clubs to Troon. We regard the purchase by Troon as clearly a move in the best interests of the membership."

I think the developer sees the light at the end of the tunnel so to speak. Development has been going like wild fire and will come to an end, probably in the next 5 years or so. I can only assume the developer wants to make a 'clean break' and divesting The Clubs was a big part of that.

Last edited by ditchoc; 01-10-2018 at 04:14 AM..
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Old 01-10-2018, 06:01 AM
 
11 posts, read 12,709 times
Reputation: 15
Am I reading the FAQ correctly...are the Seaside Wellness Center/Pool and the Beach Club NOT part of this sale? Is seems to only specifically list Members, Founders, Reserve and Players and a running of Tommy Thompsons. There is not any indication in the FAQ if the clubs will be "opened" to non St James residents. For example, can one that lives outside St James and pay a monthly fee and come and use the sport facilities, fitness centers, etc. I would think this would cause traffic/parking concerns, as well as limited availability for residents. Would a "gym membership" exclude the huge buy in amount...because I don't know of any fitness center that requires a 20k buy in and a monthly fee. I did call my sales agent at St James when I read the clubs could be turning over (this was before the confirmation of the sale) and he could not answer these questions. As a future buyer OR a current resident I think it's important information that should be clear.
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