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Troubles At The Greenbrier

January 30, 2009

Interesting times at the Greenbrier, the venerable and stately West Virginia hotel and resort that hosted the 1979 Ryder Cup and the 1994 Solheim Cup -- and, lest I forget, where my future wife and I met on a blind date nearly 15 years ago.

Matt Ginella files a report on the situation in this week's Golf World. He explains that the Greenbrier's corporate owners, CSX (a railroad company), posted a $38 million loss in 2008, which it blamed on the labor turmoil at the resort. As a result, CSX has hired Goldman Sachs to do a top-to-bottom study of the Greenbrier and the way it does business. The study and its recommendations should be revealed soon.

CSX officials have hinted that any outcome is possible, including the shuttering of the resort. Other observers -- including the governer of West Virginia -- would like to see CSX sell the resort, perhaps to a company whose primary business is hospitality, not railroads.

Oh, and there is this: As a means of generating revenue, some people are lobbying to make table gambling legal at the resort. Honest.

-- G.R.