Sunday, April 10, 2016
Since about 2001, Augusta National Golf Club, dubbed the most powerful golf club on earth, has spent about $40MM to entice locals to sell their properties and thereby bought up much of the land bordering their exclusive grounds. BUT there is one holdout on the northwest corner of the club owned by a couple who just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. The area is a free parking lot, Gate 6A, now bulldozed, that was once a fully lived in neighborhood, where kids happily played in the streets. The house in question at 1112 Stanley Road is in the middle of Gate 6-A.
Augusta National was designed by Bobby Jones and others and opened for play in 1933, with the Masters starting there the following year. In Golf Digest’s 2009 list of 100 greatest courses, Augusta National ranked #1. In Golfweek Magazine’s 2011 list of best classic courses for course architecture in the US, it was ranked #10. The first female members were admitted in 2012, Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore. In 1990, African Americans were admitted to this exclusive membership. There are 10 cabins on the property, one built exclusively for member President Dwight D. Eisenhower after his election, according to secret service specifications. Famous golfers Ben Hogan and Sam Snead were also members. Others include Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Roger Goodell, Sam Nunn, T. Boone Pickens, Jr, Jack Welsh and many other CEOs of top companies. Membership numbers about 300 and is by invitation only. Members and tournament winners receive a distinctive green sports coat.
Club officials stop by regularly with offers, but the residents don’t want to go. They raised their family in this 1900 sq ft 3-bedroom house, with everyone coming back for the holidays, which Zillow values at $355,126. Initial sellers got about $250,000 for their homes. Built in 1959, on the cusp of being a historic home, it remains the “piece de resistance”. Their grandson has become a professional, Scott Brown, age 32. He is a PGA Tour member, not yet making the Masters. Their brother sold his home, on two acres, and two other homes he owned, for a cool $3.6MM. The residents owned another property across the street that they sold to the club for $1.2MM. A nearby holdout wound up settling for $960,000, for a very similar house.