De Vere golf portfolio sold to foreign buyers

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 20, 2014 11:16


Two giant global financial institutions, Sankaty Advisors, LLC (Sankaty) and Canyon Capital Advisors LLC (Canyon), have bought all six of the golf clubs De Vere owns, and transferred their management to QHotels.

de vere loch lomond

Loch Lomond

The figure paid for the six – all premium venues – has not been disclosed, and means that the number of iconic golf clubs that have been sold to foreign owners in 2014 has now hit an unprecedented double figures. Earlier this year newspaper reports valued the six at about £160 million.

The six venues are Cameron House, Loch Lomond (which alone is valued at about £65 million); Dunston Hall, Norwich; Oulton Hall, Leeds; Mottram Hall, Macclesfield, Cheshire; Slaley Hall, Hexham, Northumberland; and Belton Woods, Grantham, Lincolnshire.

Sankaty Advisors, LLC (Sankaty) is a credit specialist with offices all over the world and Canyon Capital Advisors LLC (Canyon) is an asset manager based in Los Angeles.

QHotels managing director Michael Purtill commented: “This is a really positive move that will help drive long-term, sustained growth for the QHotels brand. The six hotels are an excellent fit as they are renowned for their first-rate facilities, catering and service. This aligns with our guest-first ethos and enables us to effectively expand our UK reach.

“We will be working with each hotel on an individual basis to ensure we build on the best of what they have to offer and complementing this with our experience and expertise. This will help to maximise the conference and events potential of each of the hotels, while strengthening our portfolio in terms of a wider golf, spa and leisure offering.”

De Vere Slaley Hall (Priestman Course)

Slaley Hall

With investment earmarked for each of the six hotels over the coming months, the hotels will be integrated into the QHotels portfolio.

Michael concluded: “Our first priority is business as usual for the teams and guests, ensuring we fulfil our commitments for existing bookings. We are then looking at where we can invest in developing the hotels to emulate the award winning standards QHotels is renowned for and which drives guest satisfaction and loyalty.”

The news comes just days after Carden Park Hotel, Golf Resort and Spa broke away from the De Vere Group after 14 years to become a fully independent venue.

The Belfry, which was run but not owned by De Vere, had its management transferred to Malmaison in the summer.


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 20, 2014 11:16
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1 Comment

  1. Bob Braban November 21, 11:16

    This is more bad news for traditional clubs. De Vere were notoriously bad at administering their golf courses, but even they had an impact on the club scene. Expect Q Hotels to become much more aggressive in the market place than they are at the moment. The problem posed for traditional golf clubs from hotel administered courses is well known and is mainly at weekends. Golf club memberships are falling and this has a lot to do with loss of golfers who play only at weekends and cannot justify taking up membership when in almost all parts of the UK it is cheaper to pay weekend green fees. Hotels are often full during the week and empty over the weekend. Offering a competitively priced weekend green fee makes good commercial sense, offering the same competitive deal together with accommodation makes even better sense. Using a little lateral thinking it is not too difficult for clubs to combat this increased threat, but they need to do so with urgency.

    Bob Braban

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