RESORT planned for St. Lucia aims to attract ''avid amateurs :

''I'm a property guy,'' Mike Keiser says. And for 20 years, since he opened Bandon Dunes on a stretch of secluded Oregon coastline, golfers from around have been flocking to his courses.

The property Mr. Keiser refers to has to be ideal ground for golf - sandy soil, preferably ocean side, and just enough character in the form of hills and swales to interesting reactions when the golf ball lands on the turf.

His latest golf venture is taking him to the Caribbean island of St. Lucia. ''I've been there once, and it just takes your breath away,'' Mr. Keiser said. ''It's such an exciting site.''

The 74-year-old golf developer is the father of remote golf,'' said Ben Cowan Dewar, Mr. Kaiser's partners in the resort that will become known as  Cabot Saint Lucia.

Their previous partnership - Cabot Links in Inverness, Nova Scotia - has two courses in Golf Digest's latest rankings of of the world's top 50.

When the first met 15 years ago, Mr. Cowan-Dewar was a 25-year-old entrepreneur running a golf travel business who saw in Bandon Dunes, a successful business model, despite the difficulty of getting there.

When it opened in 1999, the most popular way to reach Bandon was a flight to Portland, followed by a five-hour drive south, though some visitors would use the closer airport in the university town of  Eugene.

The challenge is getting to Bandon, and later to Mr. Keiser's other developments - Barnbougle to Tasmania and Sand Valley in Rome, Wis, along with Cabot Links - became part of the allure.

Brad Klein, the longtime former architecture critic at Golfweek and then briefly at GolfAdvisor.com, said, ''Mike is great at finding interesting, out-of-the-way places, and traveling to them becomes part of the experience.''

Beyond that, though, the key to Mr. Keisers success was going after what he termed ''retail golfers.''  And from understanding that, as he puts it. ''one course is a curiosity, two is a destination 

Matt Ginella, who until recently wrote about travel and architecture for the Golf Channel, said that Mr. Keiser's vision was not chasing after prestigious golf championship courses, but ''going after avid amateurs.''

The Honor and serving of the Latest Gold Operational Research on Golf Sites, continues. The World Students Society thanks author Michael Croley.


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