The owner of Qualicum Beach’s Eaglecrest Golf Club, Semiahmoo Golf Course Ltd., has signed a one-year lease to continue using town-owned land on the 17th fairway and 18th tee box.
However, the lease, which expires on Dec. 31, 2021, does not stipulate nor require the owners to continue to operate an 18-hole layout.
Eaglecrest will transition into a nine-hole course facility starting April 1. Under the lease, the owners will pay the town $1,902 plus GST for use of the 17th fairway land and $376 plus GST for use on the area adjacent the 18th tee.
According to the town’s corporate administrator, Heather Svensen, the town cannot dictate how the owners want to run the golf course.
“This is a business decision, not a town decision,” said Svensen.
The new layout starting April will see former hole No. 14 as the new hole No. 1. The rotation still follows the old order: 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 1, 2, 12 and 13.
Any portions of the golf course lands that are unused for golf activities will need to be maintained as per the town’s unsightly premises bylaw.
The operations manager at Eaglecrest, Steve Phillips, indicated membership fees and rates are now adjusted. He said membership numbers will be capped to allow accessibility.
A full member now pays $1,300 and is offered unlimited golf from April 1 to March 31, 2022. A 9-hole member will pay $1,150 but will be limited to just nine holes per day.
Public rates are $30 from April to October for nine holes. During peak hours from May-Sept the fee for 9-holes is $35 and during the winter months from November to March, the rate is $22. For those wanting to double up for an 18-hole game, the rate is $45; $50 during peak hours and $27 during the winter months.
For more information on golf rates and times, visit the https://www.eaglecrestgolfclub.ca/rates/
Phillips acknowledged a number of members have moved on to other courses, not wishing to belong to a nine-hole club.
Coun. Teunis Westbroek still consider the golf course to be an asset to the community and intends to continue with his support.
“It has lots of potential” said Westbroek. “It’s a classic course and I like playing there. I think it has a lot to offer and it was unfortunate we got off on the wrong foot as a town with the owners.”