Expansion – CNL and resort impacts

Who Owns What?

The state-owned ski area at Mount Sunapee is now leased to CNL Lifestyle Properties, LLC, a Florida based real estate investment trust (See CLLY – OTC US).

Triple Peaks, LLC, (the Muellers) sold their three mountain resorts—Mount Sunapee, Okemo and Crested Butte—to CNL in 2008 for a reported $132 million with a leaseback arrangement keeping the Muellers as managers.

And why does it matter?

Resort-real estate development is the growth model for big operators, such as CNL. Look at CNL’s portfolio of mountain lifestyle properties, which includes Loon and Omni/Mount Washington (Bretton Woods) in N.H., Okemo and Stratton in Vermont, and Sugarloaf and Sunday River in Maine.

When a group of Goshen residents visited Ludlow, Vt., in 2004 to talk to the locals about the impact of Okemo’s resort development, this is some of what they heard:

  • Property taxes more than doubled when Ludlow became a “donor town” due to an increase in property values.
  • 85% of the homes were owned by out-of-staters. Locals could not afford to buy them.
  • Okemo lawyers lobbied for and got the residential density requirement misconstrued from its original one-acre zoning per residence (meaning one family) to one-acre per residence, which could house a 100-unit development.
  • The drive time through town in winter can take 45 minutes.
  • Most small locally owned businesses in Ludlow are gone. Locals shop in Claremont or Rutland.

See the “Goshen Visits Ludlow Study” via FOMS website: www.friendsofmountsunapee.org/goshen-visits-ludlow-2004

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