Client Case Studies

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Bear Trap Dunes | Ocean City, MD

Golf Business Advisors worked with The Freeman Companies, a real estate developer, when they first started in the golf business in 1998 with the development of Bear Trap Dunes residential and golf community. The 27-hole championship course was designed by acclaimed architect Rick Jacobsen on a very non-descript piece of Delaware farm land.

Today, the course is one of the most successful in the very competitive golf market of Ocean City, Maryland. Bear Trap Dunes has a full service clubhouse and restaurant and is surrounded by 700 homes boasting an outstanding homeowner amenity package, which includes a fitness center, indoor and outdoor pools, tennis courts, and a sports court.

Prior to inception, GBA assisted the Carl M. Freeman Companies with determining their membership concept plan for the club and the community. Their membership mix was unique in that the Club would have local members and resident members. However, some of those resident members would live in the community full-time, others would reside there seasonally, while others would rent their homes and want their renters to have preferred privileges.

Understanding the resort mix of play and after studying the local and regional markets, GBA was able to successfully craft of membership concept that complemented their real estate sales and membership sales initiatives while allowing for the profitable segment of daily fee and package play. The membership concept outlined the classifications of membership, pricing recommendations for dues and fees, membership benefits, membership eligibility, and 10-year pro formas.

Once the concept was finalized, GBA worked closely with the membership attorney to complete the needed documents including the plan of offering, agreements and applications.  GBA also developed a comprehensive sales and marketing plan which incorporated promotions, direct sales, public relations, collateral development, direct mail and advertising. Then, GBA provided extensive membership director training and assisted in the implementation of the sales and marketing plan.

The membership program at Bear Trap Dunes was hugely successful resulting in over 200 memberships being sold in the first two years of operation and over 350 members within four years of opening.