Single, Multi or Bundled: Which Naples Private Golf Club is Right for You?
So, you're considering joining a private golf club in Naples, Florida? As you likely know by now, you're not alone. Southwest Florida is home to more than 150 golf and country clubs, with the majority located here in the "Golf Capital of the World." For golfers new to the area, or thinking of relocating to Naples, let's break down the differences between single-course, multi-course and bundled golf club communities.
Private clubs with one 18-hole golf course – like Olde Cypress – are the most popular offering in Naples and throughout the U.S. It comes down to land and demand. A single golf course, clubhouse, cart storage, maintenance facility and practice area require at least 180 acres but often calls for 200 to 250 acres. As for demand (and supply), 18-hole clubs usually have between 300 and 350 golf memberships available (social memberships are typically a different category) depending on seasonality and other factors.
In the single-course setup, many golf members know each other personally and play together or against each other in tournaments throughout the year. Owning a home in the community where the club is located may or may not be required. For example, at Olde Cypress, golf members aren't required to live "inside the gates." Single clubs can be equity (member-owned) or non-equity (privately owned, like Olde Cypress). Check out our blog post on the difference between the two if you'd like to learn more.
According to the Club Management Association of America (CMAA), around a third of the private golf clubs in the U.S. feature multiple 18-hole golf courses. That percentage is slightly higher here in Naples, where several multi-course clubs were developed during golf's "hey-decade" from 1990 to 2000. Two outstanding examples here in the Golf Capital are Grey Oaks and Shadow Wood Country Club, which feature three courses (54 holes).
Shadow Wood Country Club
For diehard golfers who play multiple times, weekly, and crave more variety, multi-course clubs are ideal. These clubs usually have generous practice facilities to accommodate their avid golfer base. That stated, what many multi-course clubs gain in golf course variety, they sometimes lose in member camaraderie. If you're considering joining a multi-course club, inquire about the total number of golf members to ensure you'll be able to book tee times and play when you want to.
Many golfers who hail from points north aren't familiar with bundled golf communities. They emerged as a popular business model with Sun Belt developers in the early 2000s and even after the Great Recession. The term "bundled" refers to the fact that golf membership is included with the home purchase.
In this construct, there's typically no initiation fee, but homeowners must pay annual membership dues that grant access to the golf course (s), tennis courts, fitness center, etc. Since every homeowner is a golf member, and there can be upwards of 1,000 homes, bundled communities are ideal for buyers on a budget who are okay with limited golf course access.
We hope this overview was useful in helping you determine which type of Naples private golf club is right for you.
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