Top deals of 2015
Every year tells its own story. In 2014, it
was the year of the megadeal. That was not
the case in 2015.
“It has been a really interesting mar-
ket this year,” said Steven Ekovich, first
vice president and director of Leisure
Investment Properties Group’s national
golf division. “It’s unlike any of the past six
The gap in expectations between buyers
and sellers is the largest he has ever seen.
Buyers are still looking for distressed assets,
and for the first time in a while, there aren’t
“It’s been more difficult to make deals
this year,” Ekovich said.
But big sales did occur, usually for single
properties. The two biggest deals were in
the United Kingdom. Other sales had more
to do with right-sizing.
“There’s an effect where we are reacting
to the overbuilding of the 1980s and 1990s,”
said PM Realty Group Vice President Ken
Arimitsu. “In 2016, you’re going to see a
lot of obsolete properties going away, and
that helps the surrounding courses because
there’s less supply.”
1. Gleneagles Hotel and Golf Resort
Price: £150m, or approx. $225 mil.
Owned by Diageo, the British alcohol company behind Guinness and Smirnoff, for
more than three decades, the recent Ryder
Cup host venue, Gleneagles Hotel and Golf
Resort in Scotland, sold for about £150m,
or approx. $225 million, this summer.
Diageo sold the property because it was
not a core asset and it felt no time would
be better for a good price, since it had just
hosted the Ryder Cup.
Ennismore, a private investment company, won the deal after battling the final
bidder, KSL Capital Partners, which
bought Cameron House, this year’s second
Ennismore is primarily in the hotel busi-
ness. It has made its name by renovating
old buildings and turning them into bou-
tique hotels with a cool vibe. It is unclear
how Gleneagles fits within its core busi-
Gleneagles features 54 holes on three
courses, including Jack Nicklaus’ PGA
Centenary Course, The King’s Course,
The Queen’s Course, a nine-hole practice
course and a PGA National Golf Academy.
Nicklaus described his course as “the finest parcel of land in the world I have ever
been given to work with.”
2. Cameron House
Buyer: KSL Capital Partners
Price: £70 million, or approx.
The year ended with the sale of Cameron
House and Carrick Country Club, two sister properties located in Glasgow, Scotland.
According to The Scotsman newspaper,
the properties sold for an estimated £70
million, or approx. $106 million, to KSL
Capital Partners, LLC, a private equity firm
based in Denver, Colo. The seller, QHotels,
had purchased the property from De Vere
in November 2014.
Cameron House features the Wee
Demon, a nine-hole course to warm up
With the big portfolios that sold in 2014 gone, this past year was marked by
several large transactions for single properties. BY LAIRA MARTIN
Gleneagles Hotel and