Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Trump National Long Island?

Trump Golf may get Engineers Country Club after all. In mid-September, it was reported that negotiations were underway for the venerable club in Roslyn Harbor, N.Y. — which hosted the 1919 PGA Championship and the 1920 U.S. Amateur Championship — to become a Trump-branded country club. However, on November 20, the club sent the following letter to members:

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Dear Fellow Member:

We are writing to you to provide you with the current status of our discussions with The Trump Organization. It has been approximately three weeks since Donald Trump and his team met with us at our Club. Since that time, we have been working diligently in an effort to negotiate a number of important issues in an effort to arrive at a Letter of Intent that that Board felt comfortable presenting to the membership. In the course of this process, our objective was not to lose sight of our duty to the entirety of our membership.

With that said, it appears that we have reached an impasse in our negotiations. Our dealings with the Trump Organization have been extremely amicable and both sides have conducted themselves with the utmost professionalism. Unfortunately, there are a few key issues that could not be resolved in a way that our Board and it’s [sic] counsel saw fit. It is for this reason that both sides have mutually agreed to discontinue discussions at this time. While we are disappointed that a deal could not be agreed to at this juncture, we are appreciative of the significant efforts of all those involved.

We can not thank you enough for all of your patience, suggestions, and participation in our meetings over the last few months. Your passion on both sides of the issues we faced should be commended. Our Club is fortunate to have such a caring family of members.

We look forward to a terrific 2011 season with a strong and vibrant membership. We believe it will be our best season yet! Wishing you all a happy and healthy holiday season.

Respectfully,

Board of Directors

Engineers Country Club

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However, a knowledgeable club insider passed along word that last night, December 7, the board voted to bring Trump Golf’s proposal to the membership. Should the deal go through, the club would become Trump’s first Long Island course and third in the state, joining Trump National Westchester and Trump National Hudson Valley. Engineers CC’s course was built by Herbert Strong in 1917 and redesigned by Devereux Emmet in 1921, with additional work in recent years by Tripp Davis.

“My personal opinion is [the Trump proposal] will pass,” said one veteran member who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “I am not necessarily in favor it, but we had over 80 ‘trial members’ step up who have voting rights. They clearly did it for reduced rates, and they have a substantial voting block. It has created a lot of tension within the club. The club is divided between old-time members — those over five years — and newbies who just want the next best deal.


“It’s not a good scene,” the member concluded.

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