The game of golf lost one of its premier hot spots in Nevada this week. The Wynn Golf Club of Las Vegas shut its gates and rolled up the greens, for good. There was not much media coverage of its demise, and that was on purpose. Steve Wynn, a Las Vegas high roller who bankrolled the course with profits from his casinos, felt that it was just too sad to use for publicity or clickbait.
Why did the course close? That’s up for debate. In its twelve years of existence the course played host to some of the biggest names in Hollywood and Washington. Brad Pitt was often seen on the links, as was Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. At one point the course was getting so overcrowded that the management raised entry fees to an outrageous $500.00. This cut down the traffic, but it also brought to a head the simmering resentment of many Las Vegas residents, who claimed the course was for out of towners only, and not Vegas-friendly.
Then there were whispers that Wynn had simply done the math on golf course profits versus hotel profits, and come to the conclusion that a big hotel and a small park would make him more money than a large golf course, with its labor-intensive upkeep. The fact of the matter is that the course will be turned into a huge hotel complex and twenty acre park featuring water sports, zip lines, and nightly fireworks displays.
This could be the future of many golf courses, if their profit margins do not satisfy their investors/owners.