New owners and more than $1 million in renovations have turned a once-bankrupt country club into a thriving one called Cypress Lakes.
Ormond Country Club declared bankruptcy in 2010, but new owners, including area business leaders and philanthropists, purchased the club and introduced it as Cypress Lakes in January 2011. Since that time, membership has increased by 62.4 percent as massive improvements took place in the club and on the course.
"Each aspect of the club has been systematically diagnosed and improved," Blake Duke, the general manager of Cypress Lakes Country Club, said. "Everything from accounting systems and procedures, physical structures and amenities, golf course agronomy schedules and chemicals, to food quality and service procedures has been personally touched and improved through our close board member/manager relationship."
The clubhouse of Cypress Lakes has been completely renovated with the addition of more conference and meeting areas, a separate bar/restaurant, a steakhouse and a fully stocked pro shop. The 3,583-square-foot Grand Ball Room also boasts imported marble, drapes and linens from around the world, while the pool area received new landscaping and professional swim team facilities.
"(The swimmers) also eagerly await the new pool heating systems that will double our swim season," Duke said.
The tennis facility, which includes four courts, has also received new lighting as well as a newly-remodeled private tennis clubhouse. Tennis socials and mixers are scheduled throughout the year and league play, such as Thursday night menís and ladiesí matches, are available to members.
For the golfers, Cypress Lakes has a 6,556-yard, par 72 course surrounded by 17 ponds and 20-year-old Cypress trees. Bermuda fairways surround Bermuda greens, with 40 strategically placed bunkers and several forced carries over wetlands and water.
Recent green and fairway repositioning, along with a brand new greens program and new pond dredging, have put the course in the best shape it has ever been in, Duke said.
"The golf department has also made some wonderful strides with the introduction of the Tim Brown Golf Academy," Duke said.
Led by PGA Class A professional Tim Brown, Duke said that the private golf studio is equipped with some of the most technologically advanced teaching equipment in the south.
"Itís complete with swing monitors, video surveillance and radar position equipment," Duke said. "Tim and his staff easily diagnose any swing error."
Duke added that the major changes to the club and course have made Cypress Lakes profitable because they have allowed a return to a true country club business model.
"By creating an environment that includes all the amenities due a country club, like swimming, tennis, golf, socials, tournaments, dances and family activities, we are able to attract the thing that has proven to be our life blood – members," he said. "With the support of our community through simple membership, we are able to grow strong enough to attract high-dollar events and corporate accounts to complete our model."
And Duke said the surrounding community has been drawn in by the changes.
"We really could not be happier with the communityís support of the club," he said. "Each passing day we watch as more and more patrons fill our restaurants and golf course. It is our mission to one day have 100 percent membership support from our neighboring community.
"The club is and always will be only as strong as the great members and community members that support it."
There are several different membership options available at Cypress Lakes, including a $50 pool/social membership and a $140 unlimited golf membership. For more information, visit: www.cypresslakescc.com/request_membership.