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Engineers Country Club votes for sale to RXR Realty

Members voted overwhelmingly to sell the Engineers Country

Members voted overwhelmingly to sell the Engineers Country Club in Roslyn Harbor, seen here on Feb. 26, 2001. Credit: Newsday / Michael E. Ach

Developer RXR Realty is seeking to purchase the historic 138-acre Engineers Country Club in Roslyn Harbor, the head of the club said Tuesday.

On Monday, members of Engineers Country Club, which owns the 18-hole championship golf course, voted overwhelmingly in favor of the proposed purchase by Uniondale-based RXR, said Cliff Saffron, president of the club.

The developer proposed buying the course and building a luxury residential project on a portion of the property. A price was not disclosed.

Of the club’s 84 equity members — those who are entitled to a vote — 81 participated in the voting, with 77 in favor and 4 against the RXR proposal, Saffron said. The club has more than 200 members.

“I think the overwhelming approval of the proposal is a reflection of the trust and confidence the members have in [RXR chairman and CEO] Scott Rechler and RXR Realty in terms of executing on their vision for the future of Engineers Country Club,” Saffron said Tuesday.

The club sits on the grounds of the former W.R. Willet Manor estate. It was incorporated in 1917 by the Engineers Club of Manhattan, according to the club’s website. The course hosted the second PGA Championship in 1919 and the U.S. Amateur in 1920.

The course, which the club describes as “a tricky course with very treacherous and difficult greens,” was remodeled by American golf course architect Devereux Emmet in 1921.

RXR is going through its “due diligence” and hopes to finalize and close on the acquisition by the end of November, a person with firsthand knowledge of the deal said Monday. RXR plans “on using the golf course as an incentive” to lure residents to a high-end development, the person said. RXR is also developing Long Island luxury residential projects such as the Ritz-Carlton Residences in North Hills and Garvies Point in Glen Cove.

The developer would need building and zoning approvals from the Village of Roslyn Harbor to build a project similar to the Ritz-Carlton Residences.

“It could be two or three years before you get the final plans and approvals,” the person said.

Another New York-based real estate developer previously took an interest in buying the club.

Donald Trump told Newsday in 2011 he considered spending $20 million to buy the private golf club but was put off by opposition among some club members, among other factors.

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