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Thread: Brighton Ski Area Sold

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    Brighton Ski Area Sold

    Utah's Brighton Ski Resort Sold

    Brighton, UT - Orlando, Florida-based CNL Income Properties, rapidly becoming a player in the U.S. ski industry, has purchased Utah's Brighton Ski Resort from Boyne USA for $35 million.

    The purchase includes the 850-acre ski and snowboard resort with its 66 marked runs and seven chairlifts, two restaurants, 20-room lodge, ski rental operation and retail space at the ski area's base. The acquisition was completed on Jan. 9.

    Under the terms of the sale, CNL Income Properties has leased Brighton back to Boyne under two long-term, triple-net leases with initial terms of 20 years and four five-year renewal leases. The minimum annual rent to be paid by Boyne is approximately $3.2 million in the first year and increases annually to approximately $3.9 million. Boyne has also retained the option to repurchase the property from CNL at a later date at a fixed return, exercisable beginning in the seventh year through the 25th year following the sale.

    CNL maintains similar purchase/lease back arrangements with Boyne for the Gatlinburg Sky Lift (Tenn.) and Cypress Mountain (B.C.) ski area operations. It likewise entered into similar arrangements in December with Booth Creek Ski Holdings for its Northstar Resort and Sierra Resort (Calif.), Loon Mountain (N.H.), and The Summit-at-Snoqualmie (Wash.) ski resorts.

    Brighton sold
    CNL Income Properties has not been gun-shy in making deals nationwide
    By Mike Gorrell
    The Salt Lake Tribune

    Brighton Resort, a Big Cottonwood Canyon fixture since 1936, has been sold for $35 million to CNL Income Properties Inc., a free-spending real estate investment trust from Orlando, Fla.
    CNL purchased Brighton from Boyne USA Inc. and then entered a long-term lease agreement with Boyne to continue operating the resort, its two restaurants, 20-room lodge, ski-rental facility and a small retail outlet.
    "We really are excited about the ski sector," said Flanker Legler, CNL's director of investor relations and research. "We see this [wave] of baby boomers coming into retirement. They're skiing longer and . . . we see [them] going to a day ski place where they can spend 4 to 6 hours with their grandchildren. We really like that."
    Calls to Boyne USA in Michigan were not returned. The Tribune also was unable to reach Randy Doyle, who has managed the resort since Boyne acquired it in 1987 and whose family has been involved in Brighton's operations since the mid-1940s.
    Legler insisted Brighton, one of seven ski resorts the company has purchased since May, will benefit from CNL's ownership and Boyne's continued service as operator.
    "We don't want to be in operations. We own real estate," he said. "That's why we're such attractive capital. We're patient. We sign long-term leases that show we're in it for the long haul. And the capital gives [Boyne] the opportunity to work on their operations. It only helps us if the operator does well."
    In the agreement, Boyne gets two leases totaling 20 years with four, five-year renewal options. It also has an option to repurchase the property between 2014 and 2032. In return, Boyne will pay minimum annual rent starting at $3.2 million and increasing to $3.9 million, plus a share of revenue over a specific but unidentified threshold.
    Brighton's acquisition was disclosed Friday in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing, one day after CNL revealed it had purchase seven theme and water parks from Six Flags Inc., including Elitch Gardens in Denver, for $312 million.
    Legler said the trust is aggressively interested in becoming a major player in the leisure and lifestyle sector.
    "We've raised a lot of money and we're spending a lot of money," he said, citing CNL's investment of more than $1 billion in golf courses, marinas, campgrounds, mobile home or recreational vehicle parks, health clubs, parking lots, bowling centers and manufacturer's outlet centers.
    And ski resorts.
    CNL's deal for Brighton is its fourth ski-related acquisition in seven months. Total purchase price: $275.5 million.
    On Dec. 8, CNL reached a still-pending agreement to buy Northstar-at-Tahoe and Sierra-at-Tahoe resorts in California, Loon Mountain in New Hampshire and The Summit at Snoqualmie near Seattle from Booth Creek Ski Holdings, Inc. for $170 million.
    In June, it acquired the home resort of U.S. ski racer Bode Miller, Bretton Woods Ski Area in New Hampshire, for $45 million. A few days earlier, CNL spent $27.5 million for Cypress Mountain, a small resort 13 miles north of Vancouver, British Columbia, that will be the venue for freestyle skiing and snowboarding at the 2010 Winter Olympics.
    Like Brighton, Cypress Mountain was owned by Boyne, which will continue to operate it under a long-term lease.

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