Adam’s Rib Ranch, club sold
March 31, 2015
EAGLE COUNTY — For the past 42 years, Eagle's fate has been tied in one way or another to the vision of one man — Fred Kummer, the CEO of HBE Corp. and the owner of a substantial swath of properties located in the Brush Creek Valley.
That changed recently when Denver-based Brue Capital purchased Kummer's Adam's Rib holdings — 2,655 acres of land consisting of an 18-hole championship golf course, a 40,000-square-foot clubhouse with a pool, tennis court and sport court, a 16,000-square-foot golf maintenance facility, five homes, five member cottages, 91 finished residential lots ranging from 3.6 to 9.9 acres each with all the necessary infrastructure for immediate development and a 1,553-acre ranch which includes future development rights for up to 114 residential units.
The purchase price was $21 million — a fraction of the estimated $100 million Kummer has spent on his Brush Creek holdings over the years. In 1974, Kummer envisioned a four-season, ski and golf development in the Brush Creek Valley.
"I originally conceived that area when Colorado was red hot and Eagle, Colorado, was billed as boomtown USA," said Kummer in a Saint Louis Journal report. "I put a lot of money into it, and I sold it for a little bit of money. At my age, I had decided that I played around with the toy long enough — that's an expensive toy, $100 million, so I disposed of it."
It is a bit of irony that the Brush Creek Valley has been preserved from development because a developer owned it. While the Adam's Rib Ranch and Adam's Mountain Country Club has been operating since 2008, that project represents a tiny fraction of the development density Kummer originally envisioned in the valley. With new owners involved, development efforts will resurface.
"We are absolutely thrilled to become stewards of the storied Adam's Rib Development and Adam's Mountain Country Club," said Chad Brue, of Brue Capital. "We feel that we are poised for a bright future."
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Jon Stavney, Eagle town manager, said he's already met with Brue and his team.
"The fact that meeting with the town was part of their first 'work day' as property owners after meeting with the staff at Adam's Mountain Country Club says a great deal," Stavney said.
During the past four decades, Adam's Rib spawned countless community debates. Almost as soon as Kummer revealed his plans for a recreation development, a group of citizens formed to oppose the plan. For more than 20 years, Kummer and the Concerned Citizens of Eagle County battled it out in public hearings and in the courts. By the late 1990s, Kummer's focus shifted to propose a series of golf courses in the main Brush Creek valley along with more than 1,600 residential units. Plans for the ski area died forever in 2000 when Kummer agreed to sell his East and West Brush Creek holdings to Colorado State Parks and the U.S. Forest Service.
Adam's Mountain Country Club will open in May, under the management of Meriweather Companies.
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