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October 13, 2011

Truth & Rumors: Trump buys Doral Resort for $170 million

Posted at 12:21 PM by Jeff Ritter | Categories: Donald Trump, Doral, Tiger Woods, Truth & Rumors

The Doral Resort in Miami has been on the clearance rack since its previous owners filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in February. Who better to step in and return the property to its former glory that America's most famous real estate mogul? That's right, Bloomberg reports that the Donald is ready to take over Doral.

Donald Trump agreed to pay $170 million for Miami’s Doral Golf Resort & Spa, a luxury property put into bankruptcy earlier this year by hedge fund Paulson & Co. and Winthrop Realty Trust.

The agreement will be filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York next week, and the transaction probably will be completed in the first quarter of next year, Winthrop Chief Executive Officer Michael Ashner said in a telephone interview.

“They pushed hard to get the deal done,” he said of the Trump Organization.

A spokesman said the resort will still be placed in a blind bidding auction to see if it fetches a higher price, but so far no new buyers have emerged. Trump -- surprise -- is confident that his price is a fair one.

“This wasn’t a discount price,” Trump said in a telephone interview. “We’re paying a very full price, especially in light of the fact of how much money we’ll have to spend to bring it back to its original grandeur.”

Trump will pay all cash for the transaction and expects renovations to take two years.

The developer and reality TV star has acquired at least nine golf properties in the U.S. after mostly steering clear of using his own money to buy real estate since 2005. Trump is seeking more golf deals, particularly in Florida, he said.

“We’re looking at other opportunities,” Trump said. “We’ve been buying a lot of properties. We have a lot of cash.”

Trump said that he intends to drop more than $150 million on renovations. Let's hope some of that money goes toward revamping the room service menu. I remember eating cold eggs when I stayed there during the tournament last March. Make it happen, Mr. Trump.

Tiger ends drought with win at putt-putt contest in mall parking lot
On his promotional tour for the Chevron World Challenge, Tiger Woods took on a group of fans in a putting contest. Here's the video:

Short Game
* Sure seems like a lot of PGA Tour events have been decided by a playoff this year, doesn't it? Turns out the Frys.com Open was the 17th playoff of the season, breaking a Tour record that has stood since 1991.

* In case you missed it, Golfweek's Sean Martin has an excellent Q&A with Rickie Fowler after the 22-year-old's win at last week's Korea Open.

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