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ARCHIVED  November 1, 1996

Members to acquire Ptarmigan

WINDSOR – Members of the Ptarmigan country club and golf course outside Windsor have voted overwhelmingly to purchase the club after a Denver banking and golf-course magnate offered to buy it for $5.5 million.The club is owned by Ptarmigan Club LLC, which last spring encouraged the membership to purchase the facility. But three weeks before members planned to make an offer, Ron Moore, an executive with Guaranty Bank & Trust in Denver and owner of several golf courses, submitted an offer for the project.
But 80 percent of members have so far voted to exercise their right of first refusal and purchase the club, said John Trenary, president of the membership’s interim board of directors.
“Ron Moore has an accepted contract with the developer at $5.5 million,” Trenary said. “The membership has held a meeting and has voted overwhelmingly to match that offer.
“Obviously, it’s an overwhelming vote of confidence.”
Membership has 45 days after being informed of the offer to match it. Trenary said a formal written offer will be submitted to the developer during the week of Oct. 28. Moore made his offer Oct. 3.
Ptarmigan boasts about 305 full-time golf memberships, Trenary said, adding that the group is in the process of forming Ptarmigan Golf & Country Club Inc., the prospective ownership entity.
Members currently pay a $7,500 upfront fee when joining, plus monthly fees of $200. With the buyout, each member would be assessed an additional fee of $1,500 for three years, with the balance of the $5.5 million to be financed, Trenary said. In exchange, they receive an equity stake in the club.
Ptarmigan Club LLC, the current owner, is headed by Tom Muth, a resident of northern California who comes to Colorado every two weeks, said his son, Dave Muth, a broker-owner with The Group Inc. who handles sales of Ptarmigan’s planned 365 homes. Tom Muth is head of Crestwood Hospitals, a group of convalescent hospitals and skilled-nursing facilities.
Dave Muth said his father is excited about a potential sale to the membership.
“That’s kind of your dream, if you’re developing a golf course, to have your members buy the course,” Muth said.
“We’re real excited about the acquisition,” he added, noting that a formal written commitment had yet to be received.
The sale would include Ptarmigan’s golf course, clubhouse, swimming pool, tennis courts, golf-cart barn, maintenance facilities, etc., but would not include any of the surrounding residential development, which would continue to be developed by Muth.
Dave Muth said the project is 65 percent to 70 percent complete. Patio homes range in price from $200,000 to $325,000, while single-family homes range from $250,000 to $1 million, Muth said.
Development along the corridor between Windsor and Interstate 25 has expanded rapidly in recent years, adding to the club’s membership base, Trenary said.
“They have substantially built up this area,” he said.
Muth said he thought $5.5 million is a fair price.
“Considering how long Ptarmigan has been out here, I think we’ve made some huge strides over the last couple of years,” he said.
Ptarmigan has rebounded from a rocky start. Designed by Jack Nicklaus in 1979, the golf course wasn’t completed until years later. Tom Muth and his partners bought out another partner in the late 1980s – after discovering that the project was the subject of “a lot of liens,” and slowly brought the project to life and cleared up the liens.
The rebound culminated on Jan. 1, 1996, when the developer opened the $2.9 million, 17,000-square-foot clubhouse.
Ptarmigan currently is classified as a “semi-private” course, meaning that the golf course is open for play by nonmembers.
Once the acquisition is complete, however, the club will be taken private, Trenary said. He said the purchase is expected to close Dec. 31, after which no outside play would be allowed.
Taking the club private would reduce traffic on the greens and should help eliminate pesky problems such as metal spikes, which are sometimes worn by outside players on the course, Trenary added.
“It’s a very close-knit membership that enjoys golf tremendously,” he said.
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WINDSOR – Members of the Ptarmigan country club and golf course outside Windsor have voted overwhelmingly to purchase the club after a Denver banking and golf-course magnate offered to buy it for $5.5 million.The club is owned by Ptarmigan Club LLC, which last spring encouraged the membership to purchase the facility. But three weeks before members planned to make an offer, Ron Moore, an executive with Guaranty Bank & Trust in Denver and owner of several golf courses, submitted an offer for the project.
But 80 percent of members have so far voted to exercise their right of first refusal…

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