Since its launch on May 2, the new Oro Valley Community & Recreation Center (formerly El Conquistador Country Club) has continued to exceed expectations. In its first two months of operation, 200-plus new memberships have been sold, which exceeds projections for the entire fiscal year. Summer youth camps have been booked to capacity. Residents have access to a series of free, community enrichment programs. The list goes on. We are so pleased at the early success of this facility, and we are committed to ensuring that trend continues in the future.
Previously, as the property was in transition, Troon had been contracted by Hilton El Conquistador Resort owner HSL Properties to operate the entire facility during the transition of ownership to the town. With the July 1 transition of operations, town staff now oversees facility management and operations of the fitness and community center elements. Troon will continue to manage the golf courses, tennis programming and food and beverage. Although the facility has a combination of management expertise, the entire facility is owned by Oro Valley and is operated in a streamlined fashion.
With the lack of capital improvements over the years by previous owners when the facility operated as the El Conquistador Country Club, the town anticipates making improvements to the property and golf courses over the next five years in the amount of $5.5 million. That money will be utilized to bring the facility up to community standards and convert existing space into community center space.
In the short-term, the town has allocated $1.1 million of those funds for improvements to the fitness center/community center entrance, redesign of the existing primary entrance, remodeling the restaurant as well as other interior improvements.
Another immediate priority for the town is ADA access. Based on community feedback, the town is now developing plans to install an elevator. As changes are being made to the facility, residents will have additional opportunities to provide input on those improvements, and they will begin seeing changes this fall, lasting through the spring of next year.
While the Community & Recreation Center offers memberships for fitness and golf, there will be many opportunities for all residents to enjoy this new facility, even if they are not members, such as daily drop-in rates to use the pools, tennis courts, fitness equipment and golf courses.
Free community events such as the Drive-In Movie on the Driving Range provide an opportunity for all residents to bring friends or family (and a lawn chair or blanket) for a free outdoor movie. The next event will be held Saturday, July 18, at sunset, and we’ll be showing the movie “Frozen.”
Other free opportunities include adult enrichment classes such as Diabetes 101 on July 17 at 11 a.m., Computers 101 on July 29 at 9 a.m. and Online Security on Aug. 18 at 9 a.m. If you’re looking for a great place to eat, stop in at La Vista Restaurant — open to the public — for lunch, Thursday pasta night or a special Friday night dinner menu created by Chef Robert.
If you are interested in a membership, you’ll be among friends (while making new ones), as the number of members has quickly grown to 753. There are fitness and golf membership packages available for individuals and families as well as at different levels to accommodate your household’s budget. For details on memberships as well as amenities, visit us at www.orovalleyaz.gov and click on the Oro Valley Community & Recreation Center banner.
As we move forward with this incredible asset, the town will be looking for opportunities to bring more youth and amateur sporting events to Oro Valley, which benefits our hotels, restaurants and stores. We’re happy to announce that the National Collegiate Club Golf Association Tournament will be held on the town’s golf courses Sept. 26-27, and in 2016, the American Junior Golf Association will hold an event Jan. 15-18. Our tennis operations continue to host many United States Tennis Association events, including the Southwest Regional competition. In late August, we’ll publish the next edition of the Oro Valley Parks & Recreation Fall Guide, full of information on afterschool programs for youth, more enrichment classes for adults, special events and multigenerational and family programs.
Don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy your Community & Recreation Center.