Kevin Brass files one of those strange New York Times pieces that tries so hard to be "balanced" that you come away wondering what the point of the whole affair was.
Apparently in this case, it's an elaborate attempt to say that most new courses are being built outside the U.S. and that some people think a name architect helps, others do not.
Glad the paper of record is so ahead of the curve.
"Odessa could be the new Bulgaria,” Mr. Hemstock said, referring to southwest Ukraine’s potential as a sunny second-home market.This would actually be funny if it were true...
Today, three-quarters of all golf courses planned or under construction are outside the United States, Britain and other traditional golf centers, according to industry estimates. With 17,000 courses already functioning in the United States, for example, the number of new 18-hole courses opening in the States fell to 119 in 2006 from a peak of 398 in 2000, according to the National Golf Foundation. Britain and Ireland are “among the most mature golf markets in Europe,” with more than 3,100 courses, according to a recent report by the Budapest office of KPMG Advisory, a consulting company.
This continuing growth of luxury residential and resort development around the world is feeding a high-stakes competition in the traditionally staid community of golf course designers, people in the industry say. Architects are increasingly trying to top one another with elaborate layouts and spectacular water elements, to woo homebuyers to international projects.
Somehow I don't think that's all the architect's doing.
And industry executives say that a well-known course architect can add more than 20 percent to the value of a development’s houses and jump-start a project.
“The name gives credibility to a development,” said Alan Mishkin, president of Abigail Properties, which is based in Phoenix and is building Las Palomas, a residential and golf project in Puerto Peñasco, Mex.. “Golf courses are not moneymakers,” he said. “They’re the sizzle on the steak” of residential developments.