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» Featured Columnists | By Scott Kauffman | September 22, 2010 2:08 PM ET

Traditions Club Nears Completion of New Clubhouse

(BRYAN, TX) -- Traditions Club, a world-class golfing community unique that serves as the home of Texas A&M University golf teams, has hired a leader in his field just in time for the completion of the first of four buildings of its $6 million clubhouse. 

William (Bill) F. Horton, with 22-years experience at private clubs, will be the new club manager.  Horton, who has been general manager of Pine Forest Country Club in Houston since 2004, has managed private clubs with more than 1,200 members including various ClubCorp properties in the Dallas/Fort Worth and Bryan areas. He has a track record of exceeding performance objectives for income, total membership and member satisfaction at each club he has managed. 

"With the opening of the clubhouse, Traditions will be the new social center for professionals in the Brazos Valley," said Spencer Clements, speaking for his partners including Peter H. Currie, Michael D.Rupe and David R. Segers, all Texas A&M graduates who assumed ownership and management of Traditions in 2009.

Traditions Club is a golf course community with a Jack Nicklaus-designed course at the center of more than 1,000 acres of rolling terrain.

"Our goal is to be the premier social club for the region...that just happens to have a world-class golf course around it," said Clements. "It's one of the best courses in Texas and probably the best course in the Big 12."

Traditions Club, with homes and lots plus casitas and cottages for overnight and weekend stays, is located in the heart of The Research Valley, next door to the new Texas A&M Health Science Center and near the popular George Bush Presidential Library.

"Our new 25,000-square-foot clubhouse complex will be the showpiece of the community and my vision is to focus the club on premium golfing, country club service with superb quality, and friendships," said Horton.

Clements said the first of the four-building complex to open-- in time for Thanksgiving events-- will feature  two dining rooms, a banquet room and the wine room which guests will access by elevator which opens up right in the foyer of the wine room. Private wine lockers will line the walls and will showcase the "Chef's Table" that seats 14.

"The new 200-acre Texas A&M Health Science Center adjacent to the Traditions Club property will bring with it an estimated $1 billion economic impact to this area,"  Clements said.   "We are creating a unique private club.  No other alumni association can match the loyalty and power of the Former Students Association.  And Traditions intends to be the new social center for Aggies when they return to visit and for those who live and work in the Bryan-College Station community and this region."

Turkey Earns Condé Nast Traveler Destination of the Year

(ISTANBUL, TURKEY) -- Turkey has swept up the highly prestigious accolade of the Condé Nast Traveler's favorite country in the destination category at the recent 12th Annual Readers' Travel Awards. This is the first time that Turkey has won the award and it goes to show how the country has catapulted into the limelight for holidays and even second homes. 

"We are thrilled that Turkey has won this prestigious award, which is even more meaningful given that it is chosen by the readers themselves," said Irfan Onal, director of the Turkish Culture and Tourism Office "This is the highlight in what has been a very successful year as the Turkish Culture and Tourism Office UK. Indeed, visitor numbers from the United Kingdom continue their spectacular rise, with year-on-year figures up 15.5 percent for the first seven months of this year."

It is this rise in popularity and profile of the country that has captured the hearts of overseas home buyers. For those who have holidayed in Turkey, have experienced the rich culture, warm climate and excellent hospitality and have gone on to search for a piece of Turkey to call their own. 

"Year on year enquiries for homes in Turkey have increased," said Julian Walker, director of Spot Blue, a leading property agent in Turkey. "We are seeing leisure purchasers set their eyes on some of the fabulous coastal resorts on the Mediterranean Sea and Aegean Sea and we are also finding investors flooding into the market with a particular interest in Istanbul."

For lifestyle buyers seeking a glamorous villa retreat, Julian recommends Yalikavak Villas, which is just 450 meters from the beach, close to the Yalikavak International Yacht Marina and only 18 kilometers from the vibrant town centre of Bodrum. This private development consists of 24 unique modern detached villas, each with magnificent sea views, spacious terraces, private swimming pools and state-of-the-art features. There are three types of villas available, including 10 three-bedroom, 9 four-bedroom and 5 three story, six-bedroom villas.

The architect has designed each property in a very modern and contemporary way especially to make the most of the stunning Aegean Sea and mountain views which are spectacular. With prices starting from $508,000, discerning buyers can purchase a piece of Turkish paradise without the huge price tag.

"Turkey offers excellent value for money for both holiday makers and home owners," Walker added. "The cost of living is so low and in real estate you can get a lot for your money compared to other European destinations. Value for money was one of the voting criteria as well as climate, culture, variety of attractions, people and hospitality amongst others. We can certainly see why Turkey has won the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler  award;  it simply ticks all the boxes."

Troon Golf Hires Asian Business Development Director

(SCOTTSDALE, AZ) -- Troon Golf, the world's largest golf course operator, continues its strategy to expand throughout Asia by appointing David Townend as director of business development for Troon Golf in that region.

David Townend, a 23-year member of the PGA of Australia, possesses a wealth of valuable experience having lived and worked in Asia for the past 19 years. In addition to his extensive Asia-Pacific experience, Townend holds an impressive portfolio in all areas of club and hotel management and has been responsible for pre-opening and operations management at numerous highly acclaimed facilities, including Troon Golf Australia's Brookwater Golf Club. 

Townend is based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and possesses language skills in Mandarin, Japanese and Bahasa Malayu. 

"David is a longtime Asia veteran, and coupled with his past history of working for Troon in Australia, he was the perfect candidate to work closely with our team to help drive our growth in Asia," said Ryan Walls, Troon Golf's senior vice president, managing director, Australasia division. "We are confident that David's skills will help position Troon Golf for success in a highly competitive market." 

Headquartered in Queensland, Australia, Troon Golf Australasia is committed to developing Troon Golf's presence in the region with additional support offices in Seoul, South Korea and Hong Kong. This rapidly expanding division now oversees operations at nearly 20 properties located in Australia, China and South Korea.

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