An artist's rendering of The Center Club's new look
To that end, ClubCorp is tripling the size of its bar, installing a
103-inch flat-screen TV, creating “touchdown” areas or nooks for small
groups to gather, and furnishing sitting areas with “tablet chairs” with
personal desktops and electrical outlets for laptops, iPads and
smartphones. When the remodel is complete some time in late November,
Vosough says it will create 20 to 25 percent more seating than the club
currently offers. The dining room will still have ample seating for
traditional entertaining, but the sweet spot of the reinvented club will
be the social areas, including an enhanced patio retreat, aimed at
today’s socially engaged executive and professional.
want places in the club where people can connect and connect more
often,” says Laney, who estimated that the recession took a 15 to 20
percent bite out of memberships at most private clubs, including the
Center Club. The end game is to significantly increase Center Club
membership from its current level of about 800.
retail magnate and philanthropist Henry Segerstrom and his peers, the
Center Club has long been a favorite haunt of the well-heeled arts and
corporate crowd. Laney and Vosough say they understand the club’s
history and want to preserve its base as they modernize amenities and
win over a new generation of members.
“We believe that a
mature audience will be drawn to a club like we envision if it’s done
professionally,” Laney says. “We believe we are creating a more exciting
space that will have a wide appeal.” Quick fact: Opened in 1987, the venerable Center Club will sport a more open, casual feel, with TV screens, pub tables and a larger lounge and coffee bar. Late November is the target date for completion of the club’s interior makeover.