Nelson County, VA
Updated 10:40 PM EST – 2.12.14
At 10:05 EST BRL received the below press release from Hunter Public Relations. It has been reprinted in its entirety.
“PARK CITY, UTAH (Feb. 12, 2015) – EPR Properties (EPR: NYSE,) a real estate investment trust (REIT) purchased the assets of Wintergreen Resort in conjunction with its operator for the property, Pacific Group Resorts, Inc. Wintergreen is about 45 minutes southwest of Charlottesville, Virginia. Pacific Group Resorts will lease the property from EPR and manage the resort.
Hank Thiess, General Manager of Wintergreen Resort and a longtime industry veteran, expressed his enthusiasm for the transaction, “I’ve been in this industry for over 30 years and I’ve known the leadership of Pacific Group Resorts for over 20 years. They have tons of experience in this industry at some of the most iconic resorts in the West. My management team and I are excited for the possibilities this partnership could bring to our members and guests.”
“Wintergreen has great facilities,” noted Mark K. Fischer, speaking on behalf of Pacific Group Resorts. “Between ski, golf, spa, tennis, and meeting space, Wintergreen is an active year round playground, and it is right next to the Shenandoah National Forest, so it is one of the most beautiful resorts in the eastern U.S. We are very much looking forward to helping the staff deliver the best possible guest experiences.”
Pacific Group Resorts also owns Ragged Mountain in New Hampshire, and worked in concert with EPR to acquire Wisp Resort in Western Maryland in 2012. EPR Properties’ total investment portfolio exceeds $3.9 billion and the company adheres to rigorous underwriting and investing criteria centered on key industry and property level cash flow standards.
In commenting about potential changes and opportunities at Wintergreen, Fischer remarked, “The executive team at PGRI has a broad base of experience in mountain resort operations and in the master planning and development of ski resorts. We hope to work with the management team at Wintergreen to maximize the customer experience through a combination of meticulous planning and operating enhancements and efficiencies. The people at Wintergreen are top notch, and we are delighted to be working with them on the possibilities for growth here.”
The new buyers purchased Wintergreen from James C. Justice of West Virginia. Justice had acquired the resort in the summer of 2012 and had injected capital into the property to make improvements and to stabilize the operations. Pacific Group Resorts intends to work with the staff and with property owners in the area to see how they can make it an even more enjoyable place to visit.
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About Wintergreen Resort: Wintergreen Resort is an 11,000-acre, four-season resort located in the Blue Ridge Mountains southwest of Charlottesville, Va. This beautiful hideaway is the ultimate vacation and conference spot. Nearly 230 condominium-style accommodations, 45 holes of championship golf, snow skiing, snowboarding and snow tubing an award-winning tennis program a full-service, destination spa 40,000 square feet of meeting and event space, and savory dining options comprise the year round resort. The resort is located adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway in beautiful central Virginia near Charlottesville, just 90 minutes from Richmond, Va., three hours from Washington, D.C. and Raleigh, N.C., five and a half hours from Philadelphia, and eight hours from Atlanta. For more information, guests can call (434) 325-2200 or visit the resort’s web site at www.wintergreenresort.com.
About EPR Properties: EPR Properties (EPR: NYSE) is a specialty real estate investment trust (REIT) that invests in properties in select market segments which require unique industry knowledge, while offering the potential for stable and attractive returns. Our total investments exceed $3.9 billion and our primary investment segments are Entertainment, Recreation and Education. We adhere to rigorous underwriting and investing criteria centered on key industry and property level cash flow standards. We believe our focused niche approach provides a competitive advantage, and the potential for higher growth and better yields. Further information is available at www.eprkc.com.
About Pacific Group Resorts: Pacific Group Resorts (PGRI) now operates three ski and snowboard resorts and four golf courses, and senior management of the company has a combined 60 years of executive or ownership experience in the industry. PGRI is an affiliate of Pacific Group which has built and developed signature base facilities and villages at Whistler in British Columbia, Mammoth and Squaw Valley in California, Solitude and Snow Basin in Utah, Jackson Hole in Wyoming and Copper Mountain in Colorado in addition to a wide range of other commercial properties in 27 states. www.pgri.us”
Updated 8:45 PM EST – 2.12.14
Though no official word has been released as of Thursday evening, BRL has learned the resort has been sold to EPR Properties based in Kansas City, Missouri. The company specializes in properties such as ski resorts, entertainment and charter schools. According to our information a subsidiary called Pacific Group Resorts will operate Wintergreen. The company’s website lists Ragged Mountain Resort in New Hampshire and Wisp Resort in Maryland as two current properties.
BRL learned that a meeting took place Thursday afternoon with some upper management employees, while other employees were told they would be re-applying for current positions, something that’s commonplace in the industry when resorts and the like are sold.
An official release with more details will be released soon according to managers we talked to.
Original breaking post at 10:39 AM on 2.12.15
BRLM has learned that Wintergreen Resort has been sold as of Wednesday night. We are making confirmation before releasing the company name and have requests in both to the local PR / media contacts at the resort as well as the the acquiring company.
More on the history of past sales and acquisitions here.