Two GTA golf courses set to sell

News broke Wednesday that two Greater Toronto Area private golf courses would be selling to separate land developers.

The courses in question are York Downs in Unionville, and The Mandarin Golf and Country Club in Markham.

Robert Thompson had the story about York Downs for Global News.

York Downs, a private club north of Toronto, had an initial offer of less than $325-million earlier this year to sell its prime real estate to a developer. The club elected to put out a tender to see if the land would receive other offers.

At a meeting this week, the club’s board of directors told members of a $412-million offer from a developer, which means the club would stay in its current location for five years with each member receiving about $200,000 for their share.

Thompson continues to say that most of the members at York Downs paid approximately $30,000 for their memberships over the years, meaning they will receive a significant return on their investment to join.

There had been some rumblings of a new course being built, but according to Thompson, that idea hasn’t gained much traction.

Later in the day, a press release was distributed via MarketWired announcing the sale of The Mandarin for $22 million.

The Mandarin Golf and Country Club Inc. announces that (it) has completed today its previously announced agreement of purchase and sale with an arm’s length third party (the “Buyer”) wherein the Buyer has purchased the property municipally known as 11207 Kennedy Road, in Markham Ontario for a purchase price of CDN$22,000,000. One-half of the Purchase Price was paid in cash at closing and the other half is evidenced by a 7 year vendor take-back mortgage.

The release continues to say that “the buyer will enable Mandarin to continue to use the golf course and any related facilities for up to three year,” but Mandarin “will be responsible to pay all costs associated with the operation of the property.”

As fine a club as York Downs is, I’m sure – I’ve never played, but it’s currently getting a renovation by Jeff Mingay (one of the best golf designers in Canada) – its closing may actually be a good thing for golf in the GTA. One less course in a crowded market.

Within 15 minutes of York Downs is Eagles Nest, Summit, and Angus Glen, so members of York Downs have no shortage of new clubs they could join (including this offer from Medowbrook).


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