Lusso isn’t the only high-end destination club or private resort to succumb to the sagging economy and the eroding real estate market.
Several recently have closed, consolidated or reduced services as membership sales have fallen and their business models have been turned upside down by plunging real estate values.
Early members paid $350,000 for what was supposed to be a refundable deposit, plus annual dues of $25,000. When the club filed for bankruptcy protection in December, the deposit had increased to $425,000, with fees set at $28,000.
Lusso’s founder, Steve Greer, said that the club’s operations have gone on uninterrupted. He expects a restructuring plan to be filed by the end of the month.
Greer attributes the company’s troubles to what he calls “unprecedented economic times.”
“Three of the ingredients in our business are access to capital, real estate market conditions and values, and consumer confidence,” Greer said. “Each played a part in what led us to the filing.”