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Howard Riefs

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Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« on: March 31, 2011, 04:00:21 PM »
Greg Norman doesnt hold back when talking about the overbuilding that ran rampant in the 80s and 90s. He tells GolfChannel.com:

I really focus on the word 'sustainability.' I blame our industry in a lot of ways for putting America in the position its in today. America is in the hole they are now because they built 350-400 courses a year in the 1980s and 90s with unlimited budgets. People were building $25 million courses when they should have been $12 million. Here we are today, people can't afford to be members of those clubs.

So how do you fix it? You really can't. You have people with $50 million invested in a property and sell off for $5 million. So the next people coming in will do very well out of it because they don't have that debt over their head. But people get hurt along the way. So take that model and plug it into China and make it sustainable golf. And in 25 years, China will be the dominant golfing nation in the world.

http://www.thegolfchannel.com/golf-travel-insider/a-quick-round-with-greg-norman-42195/

Thats not to say Norman didnt take his share of fees to build in the U.S. during those boom times. He was plenty busy: 

http://www.gngcd.com/portfolio-results.php?country=United%20States

Currently, Norman says he has projects in Vietnam and the Caribbean while eyeing the market in S. Korea, China and South America.
"Golf combines two favorite American pastimes: Taking long walks and hitting things with a stick."  ~P.J. O'Rourke

Will MacEwen

Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2011, 04:15:50 PM »
Greg's plan at Maple Bay, BC wasn't very sustainable as they couldn't get water to the proposed course.  The developer took on 30 million of debt, gashed a big hunk of timber out of the hillside, and there it sits.

George Pazin

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2011, 04:18:52 PM »
...So take that model and plug it into China and make it sustainable golf. And in 25 years, China will be the dominant golfing nation in the world.

'Cause central planning works so well, and no one gets hurt in China....
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Mike Hendren

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2011, 04:45:47 PM »
I for one am thankful that we have the Greg Normans of the world to tell us what the hell happened.

Bogey
Two Corinthians walk into a bar ....

Eric Smith

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2011, 04:59:24 PM »
People were building $25 million courses when they should have been $12 million.

This reminds me of Gus in Lonesome Dove telling Clara, "I'm about half honest."


Greg Tallman

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2011, 05:00:06 PM »
...and as he hopped in his private plane he was heard to say "Just glad all those checks all cleared before the bust."

JMEvensky

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2011, 05:01:31 PM »

I for one am thankful that we have the Greg Normans of the world to tell us what the hell happened.

Bogey

That's the truth.Everybody's a real estate genius with 20-20 hindsight.

David_Tepper

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2011, 05:15:57 PM »
"Physician heal thyself!"  ;)

Eric Strulowitz

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2011, 05:29:22 PM »
how silly.

If there was an era of overbuilding in the US, then he should have turned down some of his projects.

No doubt about it though, there was overbuilding and no doubt new course construction has come to a screeching hault.

Of course, the economic downturn plays a large role.  But there are two other factors in play.  First, the younger generation are all about immediate gratiification.  Of course there are some decent junior golfers and junior golf programs, but this younger generation is not about hours and hours of practice and putting in the time and effort it takes to play even half-way decently.  Golf is a frustrating, tough game.

And secondly, Tigermania is gone, as many of names that were associated with that era like Phil, Vijay,etc.   They may still have a few wins left, but the heydey is over.   The new group, they are certainly talented, but not enough appeal to make one want to sit by the TV for hours or forgo another activity.  Tiger drew people to golf who could care less about the game, he was incredible in his day.  The problems that the LPGA is experiencing and finding sponsors for PGA events IMHO will accelerate.  And courses that are not competitively priced, given demand, will find themselves in big trouble.

Michael Blake

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2011, 05:38:19 PM »
I like his 2006 Limestone Coast Shiraz.

Carl Nichols

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2011, 05:43:40 PM »
Irony Alert!

Tiger_Bernhardt

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2011, 07:34:46 PM »
Greg needs to not be an opinion guy. He needs to learn so more about architecture and design.

Tim Martin

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2011, 07:49:40 PM »
I have always admired Greg Norman`s ability to handle  some very tough losses with a fair measure of grace and humility. That being said I don`t see how he can take shots at the industry in which he had a direct role and was a contributor to the problem he is describing.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 07:52:46 PM by Tim Martin »

Garland Bayley

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2011, 08:32:14 PM »
What Greg? You didn't make the top 100 again?
"I enjoy a course where the challenges are contained WITHIN it, and recovery is part of the game  not a course where the challenge is to stay ON it." Jeff Warne

Ally Mcintosh

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2011, 04:28:29 AM »
People were building $25 million courses when they should have been $12 million.

Oh dear...

Carl Rogers

Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2011, 07:26:25 AM »
Norman's comments strike me as Count Dracula guarding the blood bank and then bemoaning its depletion.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 07:29:22 AM by Carl Rogers »

Jason Connor

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2011, 07:42:02 AM »
Why do people who are talented at one thing consistently persist in trying to convince the world they're wise with respect to other things?

Greg Norman's opinion on this topic is roughly about as useful to the thoughtful as that of Sean Penn or Lady Gaga criticizing our celebrity culture.  

I once had someone tell me "Rich people are either smart or lucky.  But ALL Rich people think they are among the smart ones."

Perhaps that goes part way to answering your question.

We discovered that in good company there is no such thing as a bad golf course.  - James Dodson

Mike_Young

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2011, 09:28:49 AM »
Hmmmm....all these Signatures telling us what golf should cost....hmmmm... he says go from 25 million to 12 million....why does he stop at 12 mill?   I guess that let's them keep the large fees etc....  need  to go on down to 3 mill....
"just standing on a corner in Winslow Arizona"

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2011, 09:31:06 AM »
From one jester to another, is this an AF joke?

Greg's course at Grand Niagara never came to pass, although we thankfully have Rees' effort, which ain't so bad.

If this is a legitimate quote assault, someone's got a Christ complex!
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Lou_Duran

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2011, 11:00:18 AM »
Why do people who are talented at one thing consistently persist in trying to convince the world they're wise with respect to other things?


We all have opinions and beliefs which are often known to those around us.  Norman and other celebrities just have much bigger megaphones and spheres of influence.  It is really a failure of the audience- us- that it grants virtuosos in one field similar credibility (a halo effect) in others.

On the other hand, as a successful businessman outside of golf, Norman probably has the expertise to offer sound advice on golf course overbuilding.  Though the hype bolstering his brand was probably excessive, I doubt that the Norman group was ever asked to conduct a feasibility study or complete the due diligence.  I suspect that he has not invested his own money in his golf projects.  

Regarding the architect's role in overbuilding, I would suggest there is none.  Investors and lenders have no one to blame but themselves. Typically, developers and contractors will build when there is money on the table.  Sources of debt and equity capital have to provide the discipline for the market to work, and if they don't, they should get burned (the reason why so many of us find the post-2008 political approach to banks and investors so counterproductive).  
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 11:04:29 AM by Lou_Duran »

Jordan Caron

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2011, 11:30:24 AM »
Why do people who are talented at one thing consistently persist in trying to convince the world they're wise with respect to other things?

Greg Norman's opinion on this topic is roughly about as useful to the thoughtful as that of Sean Penn or Lady Gaga criticizing our celebrity culture.  

There is a book that discusses this very topic.  Eckhart Tolle's A New Earth talks about how it's his egoic mind that feels the need tell everyone what's wrong so it feels superior.

As someone mentioned, it's easy to say this with hindsight. 

Kalen Braley

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2011, 01:35:33 PM »
Being the somewhat cynic that I am at times...

When I read it, I just figured it meant he's willing to make some major concessions when negotiating his design fees for his next few projects!   ;)

Anthony Butler

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Trump This...
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2011, 02:04:56 PM »
The high profile marriages, the higher profile divorces,  the private plane with the name on the side, the stupid golf courses in Florida, the even dumber quotes about the golf industry and the greater economy. The dubious hair styling to cover up a bald spot... Is Greg Norman starting to remind you of someone?

Thank God only one of them can run for President!  ;D
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 02:33:22 PM by Anthony Butler »
Next!

Tony Ristola

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Re: Greg Norman blasts era of overbuilding in the U.S.
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2011, 06:09:16 PM »
Now if he railed against the fraudulent PGA Whores who provide little beyond a signature and have screwed a huge swath of golf history... I might have some respect. It sounds like hollow self promotion, or worse political correctness, and I like Norman... but gag me.

.

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