(Bulle Rock Golf Club)

15 Notable Golf Courses for Sale

This article originally appeared on GolfVacationInsider.com

Do you also dream about owning a golf course?

I have since the first grade, when I began sketching them on computer paper.

I'm not currently in a position to buy a golf course, but I do find myself perusing the listings of available courses every so often, if only to indulge a daydream.

On my most recent check, I was stunned at some of the notable golf courses for sale, out of a current (publicly advertised) pool of 300 or so.

Check these out, and let me know if you want a co-investor. I can raid my piggy bank.

(Bulle Rock Golf Club)

Bulle Rock Golf Club - Havre de Grace, Maryland

Selling Point(s): Top-100, Pete Dye design

Asking price: Undisclosed

Bulle Rock has been a fixture on the usual "Top 100 Public Courses in the U.S." lists ever since this Pete Dye design opened in 1998. The consensus choice for "best public course in Maryland," it has hosted some high-level tournament golf as well, most notably the LPGA Championship from 2005 through 2009. Located midway between Wilmington, Delaware and Baltimore, it's in a pretty good location, and the biggest piece of the puzzle - having a compelling golf course - has already been taken care of for any future owner. Also for sale: an 1,100-acre residential development around the course.


River Run Golf Club - Berlin, Maryland

Selling Point(s): Gary Player design

Asking price: $1.85 million

A Gary Player design located smack in the middle of the Rehoboth Beach/Ocean City area, River Run opened in 1991. It's part of a residential community, but the homes don't encroach too egregiously on the holes. The ninth and 18th greens come together in the same general area, and a large, meandering bunker protects both putting surfaces, with attractive views onto a prong of the Isle of Wight Bay.


(Victoria Hills Golf Club)

Victoria Hills Golf Club - DeLand, Florida

Selling Point(s): Ron Garl design; on Golfweek's Best-in-State list

Asking price: $2.5 million

Victoria Hills is one of a handful of acclaimed Central Florida courses that are sometimes overlooked because they're not centrally located in Orlando. But those who do visit the Ron Garl-designed Victoria Hills are typically happy they've done so, as the course ranks #16 in Florida on Golfweek's most recent list of the best public and resort courses in each state.


(Tradition Golf Club at Royal New Kent)

Tradition Golf Clubs at Royal New Kent; Stonehouse; and Brickshire - between Richmond and Williamsburg, Virginia

Selling Point(s): Mike Strantz and Curtis Strange designs

Asking price: Undisclosed

A management company currently owns these three courses, which include two wild, thrilling designs by the late Mike Strantz, which helped put his name on the map during his brief but fascinating career. We would love to see an owner with an appreciation for Strantz's unique artistic style take on and preserve these two courses. Brickshire is a Curtis Strange signature course that is more straightforward but has its own charms.


King Carter Golf Club - Irvington, Virginia

Selling Point(s): New, part of master-planned community

Asking price: Undisclosed

This Joel Weiman-designed course, which opened in 2005, is located just off the northern shores of the Rappahannock River, part of the master-planned Hills Quarter community. The rustic, rugged bunkering gives the course a good deal of character, and the expansive practice facility is a big draw, as well.

More infoHere

Mattaponi Springs Golf Club - Ruther Glen, Virginia

Selling Point(s): Recognized as a top Virginia course

Asking price: Undisclosed

Mattaponi Springs has long been a favorite of golfers rolling south on I-95 from Washington, D.C. toward Richmond and points south. Golf Digest ranks it among the top 20 courses in The Old Dominion State, public or private. Its relatively isolated location is both a blessing and a hindrance to the course's popularity, though as out-of-the-way golf destinations become more prominent, there may be reason to believe Mattaponi Springs' best days are ahead.

Inquiries: Here

Sapona Ridge Country Club - Lexington, North Carolina

Selling Point(s): Centrally located, not far from Charlotte or Winston-Salem

Asking price: $1.6 million

What St. Andrews is to golfers, Lexington, North Carolina is to barbecue enthusiasts - especially lovers of the vinegary Western North Carolina style of pulled or chopped pork. Sapona Ridge is the town's main private club, currently owned by NASCAR racing team owner and former driver Richard Childress, one of the Tar Heel State's richest men. The course was designed by Ellis Maples and dates to 1968.


Big Fish Golf Club - Hayward, Wisconsin

Selling Point(s): Pete Dye/Tim Liddy design

Asking price: $995,000

The second Pete Dye (along with Tim Liddy) design on this list, Big Fish sits in the forests of northwestern Wisconsin, about 90 minutes from Duluth, Minnesota. True to Dye's style, the course is driven by the juxtaposition of extensive mounding, large sandy waste areas and tiny pot bunkers. It's a get-away-from-it-all type of place and course.


Frog Hollow Golf Club - Middletown, Delaware

Selling Point(s): Convenient to Philadelphia and Wilmington, Delaware

Asking price: $1.395 million

Frog Hollow is owned by the Town of Middletown, but is being leased to the current seller. The course opened in 2000 and was designed by local architect Allen Liddicoat.


(Ocala National/Rees Jones Inc.)

Ocala National Golf Club - Ocala, Florida

Selling Point(s): Rees Jones design

Asking price: $1.5 million

Ocala is prime horse-raising country, but it's also home to a clutch of excellent golf courses, with Ocala National being many people's favorite public track. The semi-private course, redesigned by Rees Jones, takes advantage of the area's naturally hilly terrain, and hosted the 2009 U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur.


Laughlin Ranch Golf Club - Bullhead City, Arizona

Selling Point(s): Fun desert golf and a well-regarded spa

Asking price: $3 million

About 90 minutes southeast of Las Vegas and about four hours northwest of Phoenix, Laughlin Ranch sits at the edge of the Mojave desert. This makes it an intriguing place to experience desert golf in a quieter setting, though Bullhead City itself has its own small cadre of casinos and attractions. The course was designed by David Druzisky and opened in 2004. Interestingly, though there aren't on-site accommodations at Laughlin Ranch, there is a full-service spa. If you buy the course, don't expect much traffic in July, when the average daily high is 114 degrees, with an all-time high of a broiling 126.


Horse Thief Country Club - Tehachapi, California

Selling Point(s): Offbeat, gorgeous location

Asking price: $2.85 million

Most people probably know Tehachapi from the Little Feat song "Willin'," but the town of 14,000 about two hours north of Los Angeles has a bit of interesting history, as the first settlement in the area, and home to a train depot listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The town sets the scene for movies from time to time, and beloved of cyclers and mountain bikers. Tehachapi is home to Woodward West, a prominent sports camp. The course, designed in the mid-1970s by Bob Baldock and son Robert, could probably use some updating, but the lovely views of the surrounding mountains don't need tweaking. Neither does the name.


Donald Ross Golf Club - Fort Wayne, Indiana

Selling Point(s): Great history and name-recognition

Asking price: $990,000

A handful of courses directly bear the names of their designers. Pete Dye Golf Club in West Virginia and Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Virginia stand out as two high-end examples. Which makes it somewhat odd that Donald Ross Golf Club is relatively unknown, a value-oriented public course. The listing describes the course as having been profitable in 2016, which may make it a good investment for a Ross lover intent on restoring the course to its 1927 specifications and elevating its profile.


Which one of these (or any not listed) would you most want to buy? Any unique ideas for how you'd operate it?

Please share your thoughts or read what others are saying below.

May 09, 2017

Join the conversation

Post a comment 

Kat's avatar
Kat wrote at 2017-11-16 13:15:10+00:00:

Tim you are right. I’m retiring and selling my 18 executive golf course in a developed community in the heart of Bonita Springs FL. No memberships it’s pay as you play open to the public. No debt. No outside control. Well established it’s a beautiful thing $1.8

Tim's avatar
Tim wrote at 2017-08-25 10:26:32+00:00:

Golf courses need to reinvent themselves and take advantage of the asset... Open space .

Add equestrian trails ...cottage style housing to compliment are just two idea

salam's avatar
salam wrote at 2017-07-09 13:34:17+00:00:

there are a good number of (New) ideas would attract the new generation to visit, play and enjoy the golf resorts facilities and even it will increase the monthly or / and annual memberships volume.. we just need to remodle our approach and make it in our clients and visitors advantage and benefits rather than (pure revenues - profits), lets get rid of the classic marketing materials in first place.

Im looking to buy a golf course / resort that fits into my vision, if you are really interested in co-ownership, lets talk.

Mike Kahn's avatar
Mike Kahn wrote at 2017-05-18 18:02:08+00:00:

All thos courses should be posted on golfcoursesforsale [dot] com. They'll circulate in six languages around the world. Mike

David's avatar
David wrote at 2017-05-16 14:44:18+00:00:

If I hit the lotto and was resigned to losing 500k a year I would love to own a failing golf course. Millennials aren't playing and until we lose half of the courses created during the gold rush 80-90's there's no way I would touch a course.

Need fewer courses and more players.....

David's avatar
David wrote at 2017-05-10 19:38:52+00:00:

Jay got it right

They could give you the course and you would still lose

Jay's avatar
Jay wrote at 2017-05-10 02:18:22+00:00:

Continued ownership requires at least 100 paying customers at peak prices per day, every day, just to break even...anything less is a losing proposition. Costs are water, electricity, maintenance, maintenance personnel, golf carts, kitchen supplies, golf clothing, golf clubs for sale, golf clubs for rent, practice area, range balls, and maintenance equipment, including pumps, sprinklers, water lines, electrical connections,telephone, furniture, accounting personnel, tournament director, cart attendants, kitchen personnel, counter people, cash registers, computers and tv sets, cable, general upkeep of the buildings, social director, director of golf, marshals, starters, drink carts and drink cart personnel, alcoholic license, and supplies, ice machine, commercial kitchen equipment, custodial service, advertising and more.

Bill's avatar
Bill wrote at 2017-05-09 20:18:11+00:00:

A nice course in Petaluma,Ca., Adobe Creek Golf course

Has been shutdown. Just drove by and saw the fairways

overgrown, greens slowly rotting. Very sad. Once a really nice course, but for whatever reason it comes down to money. Hate to see it go.

Duane's avatar
Duane wrote at 2017-05-09 17:15:52+00:00:

Umm interesting...

SA.Anderson's avatar
SA.Anderson wrote at 2017-05-09 15:56:12+00:00:

Bucket list.

Always wanted to take my dog to play and the only way would be to own a course

Just don't have a spare 3mil.

Keith J.'s avatar
Keith J. wrote at 2017-05-09 15:36:43+00:00:

Per your comment about NC barbecue... LEXINGTON STYLE (Western) barbecue has a tomato based sauce as a rule and is often slightly sweet. It is made from pork shoulders ONLY and is usually served with a tangy, sweet red slaw (no mayonnaise in it) and hush puppies. EASTERN NC barbecue is "whole hog" barbecue, has a vinegar and peppers based sauce and is slightly sour and tangy. The slaw is usually white - sweet with a mayonnaise base but red may be offered as well. Both are delicious - and you can get a fight started any time over which is best.

Ken's avatar
Ken wrote at 2017-05-09 13:11:05+00:00:

You left off Carambola Golf Club in the US Virgin Islands. It is a Robert Trent Joncourse.es Sr.

RC Sawyer's avatar
RC Sawyer wrote at 2017-05-09 13:00:13+00:00:

Check out Boskobel Golf Club in Pendleton, SC, also.

Tim Gavrich

Senior Writer

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for Golf Advisor and the Managing Editor of the Golf Vacation Insider newsletter. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.