John Lombardo's SBD report (subscription required) on all things USGA business reveals that the organization is looking to add two more "partner" sponsors, with hopes of having six primary partners next year at Shinnecock Hills.
But more interesting, at least to those who would like to see venues not need another 80 acres for corporate hospitality tents, is a trend away from companies wanted large, expensive dedicated tents.
Mimi Griffin, CEO of the hospitality sales company handling the event for the USGA, says there is a big shift occurring in demand toward more modest tables and nimble offerings.
Fading away are the 100-125 ticket "chalets" that have crept closer to play and cost $325,000 at Erin Hills. In? More table packages with a prediction from Griffin that after the next two years, we'll see fewer classic corporate tents.
“The 100-ticket tent is going by way of the dinosaur,” Griffin said from a suite overlooking the scenic sixth green at Erin Hills. “Smaller, nimble and daily, that is what the market demands.”
Hospitality offerings at Erin Hills ranged from the platinum premier package along the 18th hole, which cost $325,000 for 125 tickets for the week, to a one-day table package for $9,225 along the 13th hole that included 15 tickets.
Griffin said hospitality sales at Erin Hills were down about 10 percent from last year’s event held at Oakmont outside of Pittsburgh. “It is not drastic, but noticeable.”