QUEENSTOWN - Hunters Oak golf course and country club in Queenstown sold at public auction on Dec. 20 for $2.3 million to a married couple from McLean, Va. - Charles and Vivian Shih.
"The intent is there will be no change in operation. It will remain as a golf club under the same management and with all the same employees," said the Shihs' Realtor, James Flaherty, of Long & Foster in Stevensville.
Flaherty said it is very important to the Shihs that the public and employees understand their intentions.
"Mr. Shih asked me to tell the auctioneer to tell Mr. (Louis) Schaefer that he is retaining all current employees and will hire back seasonal employees this spring ... They will be contacting members and introducing themselves very soon and invite all perspective new members as well," said Flaherty.
"He is a very good businessman, a lover of nature and a lover of golf," Flaherty said of the new owner.
Hunters Oak is part of the River Plantation, a 1,000-acre resort off Carmichael Road with shooting and hunting activities, two bed and breakfasts, and the golf course and country club.
The Shihs bought the 448-acre golf club, including an 18-hole Scottish links-style course, a 9-hole championship Parkland course, clubhouse, Scottish pub and grill, pro shop, Olympic-size pool, tennis courts and maintenance building.
Jonathan Melnick, the auctioneer, said the property attracted a lot of attention.
"We had a large group of serious, registered bidders ... It was a terrific crowd," said Melnick.
Bidders with a certified check on file were allowed to bid from off-site but the winning bidder was present, he said.
Pintail Point Manor House, one of the River Plantation's bed and breakfasts, also was scheduled for bank auction on Dec. 2, but a bankruptcy filed Dec. 1 by owner Louis Schaefer halted the auction.
"The debtor filed bankruptcy protection ... it puts everything on hold," said Bill Hudson of Atlantic Auctions Inc, an auction house not associated with Melnick.
Hudson said there was a lot of interest in that property as well and he hopes it will be back up for auction sometime in 2012.
The Manor House is an English Tudor-style home on the Wye River built in 1936, possibly by a Portuguese prince, according to historical description.
Schaefer, owner of Schaefer and Strohminger auto dealerships, purchased the home in the late 1970s to use as a summer place for his family.
It was converted to a bed and breakfast in 1999.
The auction was to include the 8,700-square-foot Manor House on 16 acres with swimming pool, gazebo, boat house, three piers and storage sheds.
Flaherty said the new golf club owners are private people who would like to remain so at this time.
For inquiries, call Flahery at 410-643-2244.