Mickelson group buying Southland course

Manchester & Mickelson Group, which includes Phil Mickelson, has signed a letter of intent to purchase Fairbanks Ranch Country Club in Rancho Santa Fe from its members.

The broker, Jeff Woolson, managing director of the Golf & Resort Group, said the main reason for the deal probably is that the price is right.

“The average golf course deal in the 2000s was somewhere between five and eight million (dollars),” Woolson said. “The average golf deal right now is between one and three million.

“Rancho Santa Fe is a pretty special place. It still has an affluent demographic that’s hard to beat. So there was a lot of interest and continues to be a lot of interest.”

Manchester & Mickelson’s interest in Fairbanks Ranch also involves Mickelson’s M Club and its courses, as well as another owned by Mickelson’s partner, Doug Manchester, the Grand Golf Club, a Tom Fazio-designed course at the Grand Del Mar, a resort located a few miles south of Fairbanks Ranch.

The M Club business plan allows members at each of its private clubs to have privileges at every other club. The M Club recently added its fifth course, Stone Canyon in Oro Valley, Ariz., near Tucson.

Louis Ferrero, former president of the Fairbanks Ranch board, told U-T San Diego that MMG was proposing an “ambitious improvement plan and a link to the Grand Del Mar property.”

Mickelson got into the golf course business three years ago when he and his agent and friend, Steve Loy, purchased four private golf courses in Arizona and formed the M Club.

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