In early 2014, it was decided that the historic Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club would be put up for sale. The facility, which has been in operation since 1924, was put on the market to maintain the facility and keep it as valuable landmark.
This month, the Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club was officially sold to Bruce Kleege. The Rancho Santa Fe resident purchased the club for $2.8 million. What’s up next for the Garden Club? Kleege plans on upgrading it.
Kleege first brought the discussion up with his wife when he heard that the club was for sale. “I recognized it as being a really good piece of real estate, first thing, and then I decided maybe I’ll do something more than strictly investment and do something for the community,” Kleege said. “I thought it was a necessary piece of property for Rancho Santa Fe … my social conscience kicked in. I had the means to buy it and preserve it for the community to use for a long time.”
The process was not an easy one. After going through an “intense” interview with the Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club Board, his offer was selected as highest and best. The sale also had to be approved by both Garden Club members and the Attorney General of California.
“We’re going to fix the place up. It’s a beautiful location; the building is just fine right now, but it’s just a little dated,” Kleege said. Hardwood floors will replace the lime-green carpet, and the paint will be refreshed. The upgrades are expected to be finished within the next 60 days.
Kleege also plans on finding someone else to manage the property. While the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe has expressed interest, management is still to be determined.
“This place should be full all of the time,” Kleege said. He suggested that the Club House could host company events and seminars during the week. On weekends the space could hold weddings and birthday parties.
“I hope people will utilize it more than they did before. Maybe the perception was that it wasn’t available before. I want to open it up to the children and families as much as possible, because that’s the life of the community right there,” Kleege said.