Barrington Hall Golf Club, which has teetered on the brink of foreclosure for months, was sold Wednesday.
“I’m excited about the opportunity up here,” said new owner Chris Marcum, whose family owns a course in Florida.
The north Bibb County club, which anchors the Barrington Hall subdivision, almost closed earlier this year. Former owner Ken Vicinus, who said the semi-private course was losing about $40,000 a month, told residents that foreclosure was imminent before the lender, CB&T Bank, named a management firm to keep it open until a buyer could be found.
“It’s exactly what we were looking for, somebody to take it over, keep it open and make some improvements,” said Jim Huffstetler, a Barrington Hall homeowner who helped organize community efforts to save the course.
Marcum, who will manage Barrington Hall, said he will close the course July 5 and keep it closed for 60 days to replace the bent-grass greens with lower-maintenance Bermuda grass.
“They’ve (the greens) been a source of problems for everybody for years,” said Marcum, who had managed the family-owned Sherman Hills Golf Club in Brookdale, Fla. “I can’t see selling the product I want to sell without having the product.”
Marcum said the restaurant and pool at the course will remain open for residents.
The club’s employees were let go after the sale was finalized Wednesday evening, but Marcum said most likely will be rehired.
“It’s not a personal decision, it’s a business decision. It’s a sad side of business,” he said. “This golf course is not a profitable golf course. There’s a reason why it was in the condition it was in and was heading for foreclosure.
“You have to make some changes, and I hate it because everybody’s people. But we’re going to be able to hire a good portion of everybody back here shortly and find them some things to do in the interim.”
Vicinus, the former owner, said in April that he owed about $1.8 million on the property, which includes the 144-acre golf course, restaurant, pro shop and pool. He declined to give details of the sale other than to say it was “a good deal.”
“It’s bittersweet, but it’s good news,” Vicinus said.
“It’s a sad day for me. When everything is said and done, I can get on with my life now. I tried to save the employees and the membership the best I could, but it’s out of my hands.”
Vicinus bought the property in 2002. Despite a $4 million investment, he said, Fox Run Country Club never turned a profit and was losing more than $500,000 a year.
Private Club Associates of Macon had managed the course since April 15.