Heritage adds 8th and 9th clubs to portfolio

Shackamaxon CC and Knollwood Country Club join growing management company

Heritage Golf Group recently acquired Shackamaxon Country Club in Union County, New Jersey and entered into a long-term lease with Knollwood Country Club in Elmsford , N.Y., bringing its total facility count to nine. 

KSL Capital Partners, the Denver-based investment firm, acquired Heritage Golf Group in February 2020 and appointed former ClubCorp COO Mark Burnett to run the company. At the time, it had six clubs, but said it would acquire more. 

Its first acquisition came in July, when it purchased the River Club of Mequon, a private Country Club located 25 minutes north of Milwaukee. A family club, it features a 27-hole golf course, six tennis courts, a junior Olympic pool, fitness center and a kid's Activity Center/Playdium, plus a fitness center. 

Shackamaxon Country Club is a century-old private club that last changed hands in 2012, when RDC Golf Group acquired it from members and converted it to non-equity. Shackamaxon was founded in 1916 and features a historic A.W. Tillinghast golf course, with one of Tillinghast’s first island green creations.

“Shackamaxon is an outstanding Tillinghast golf course with a rich tradition of family-oriented amenities — a profile that aligns with our interest to own and operate high quality private clubs in community environments,” said Burnett, Heritage Golf Group CEO and President. 

The Club has an 18-hole championship golf course designed by A.W. Tillinghast, a resort-style pool complex with a 25-meter main pool, an adult pool with in-water lounge and waterfall, swim-up bar with pod seating, a children’s pool with water features, a snack bar and locker rooms. Heritage plans several improvements — including the practice range, targeted tee boxes, bunkers, fairways, and golf cart paths. 

Heritage also entered into a long-term leasehold interest in Knollwood Country Club, also a Tillinghast golf club.

“This traditional full-service club fits nicely into our overall growth strategy to invest in high quality private clubs in community environments,” Burnett said.

Located 25 miles north of Manhattan, the club fhas an 18-hole golf course with a unique and optional 19th hole, a short par-three to end the round. The course was designed by Albert W. Tillinghast, Seth Raynor, and Charles Banks. Other amenities include a pool, snack bar area, locker rooms, fitness amenities, golf pro shop, two tennis and two bocce courts. Heritage hired John Cavaliere as General Manager. 

Heritage seeks courses that can benefit from an infusion of cash and capital and it has targeted the following: 1) Member-owned, non-profit clubs with growth potential through long-term financial security, strategic capital improvements, membership sales and programming creativity and professional operations; 2) Private golf and country clubs in residential communities owned by institutions, corporations, and private investors seeking a discreet exit strategy with a proven, well-capitalized industry buyer; 3) Semi-private or premium daily fee golf properties in major metropolitan markets that are additive to the network of clubs and/or can be converted to private clubs in a tight cluster offering a unique reciprocal membership platform. 4) Developer, HOA, or Hotel owned golf properties inextricably linked to the surrounding real estate but looking to monetize and redeploy capital or discharge the burden of owning and operating their noncore golf assets. 

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