Escalante Golf acquires Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg
Escalante Golf, a Fort Worth, Texas-based owner and operator of golf properties, is the new owner of Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg.
The company announced Thursday that it had acquired the golf resort from Xanterra Parks & Resorts. The Virginia Gazette reported the purchase price as $30.7 million.
Colorado-based Xanterra purchased the property in 2010 for a reported $24 million from beer brewer Anheuser-Bush Co., who developed the property on the banks of the James River more than 45 years ago.
The AAA four-diamond property adds an East Coast destination to Escalante’s growing portfolio of golf clubs in markets that have hosted amateur and professional golf tournaments.
“Kingsmill Resort is one of the most iconic resorts on the East Coast,” David McDonald, president of Escalante Golf Inc. said in in a statement. “It has hosted some of the best-known names in golf, including the PGA Tour’s Michelob Championship from 1981 to 2002 and now the LPGA’s Kingsmill Championship. It is a vibrant community with more than 2,400 home sites and has hosted presidents and dignitaries since it opened almost a half century ago. It is truly a special place with a revered history,”
According to Doug Henkel, an executive vice president with CBRE Hampton Roads who helped broker the sale, Escalante plans to continue to build upon the resort’s reputation, including a plan to develop and sell a 290-tract of undeveloped land.
That land has different zonings within the Kingsmill master plan, noted Henkel, and is fully entitled to support additional residential units, be they multifamily, condo or single-family homes. “They also have the right to build hotel rooms, time share, so there’s a lot of flexibility in that development,” Henkel said.
He and CBRE’s Jeff Woolson represented Xanterra in the sale. Henkel said Xanterra invested about $39 million in improvements to Kingsmill, including a lazy-river pool area, some riverfront cottages, a new restaurant at the marina and an updated fitness center.
When Xanterra bought the resort 2010, “they felt like they wanted to expand their holdings. They were primarily managing state and federal parks so with this property they wanted to make a splurge into something larger and East Coast-based,” said Henkel.
However, after owning and managing the property for a few years, there were a number of moving parts, including a realty company and the undeveloped land. “Xanteera opted to return back to what they do best,” said Henkel.
Kingsmill Resort is located on 2,900 acres along the James River. It has three championship golf courses: the River Course designed by Pete Dye, the Plantation Course designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay, and the member-only Woods Course designed by Curtis Strange and Tom Clark.
The resort features one-, two- and three-bedroom condominium accommodations that are owned by third parties, according to Henkel. Amenities include 15 tennis courts, four on-site restaurants, a three-pool and lazy river complex, the fitness center and a newly redesigned spa.
Kingsmill also has 16,000 square-foot conference center and a full-service marina.