Country Club Expansion and Updates – A Defining Moment
This $20 million expansion and renovation project repositioned the Lancaster Country Club for broader appeal and long-term vitality. The reimagined facilities enable the club to attract a more diverse mix of community members, and particularly young families.
Although much will be new at the club, its world-renowned golf course, created and revised by famed Philadelphia course designer William Flynn in 1919 and 1940 respectively will remain the same.
The new 24,000-square-foot activities pavilion is the focal point of the Lancaster Country Club expansion. The building was constructed on a former parking lot and overlooks the Conestoga River. The design inspiration was the work of British Architect C.F.A. Voysey, known for his English country houses based on similar references in the original clubhouse architecture. This is expressed through steeply pitched gables, natural materials and a straightforward, classical building rhythm and geometry. The selection of stone and decorative metal chimney pots reflects Lancaster County regional vernacular.
The Pavilion includes the 100-seat casual-dining Sunset Bistro, 1,700-square-foot fitness center, 800-square-foot group exercise room, locker rooms, family changing rooms and children’s play area. Considerably lighter than the heavy wood tones of a traditional country club, the interior design scheme provides an approachable contemporary aesthetic with timeless appeal. The club’s history and heritage is celebrated through artwork installations.
The bistro features a two-sided, indoor/outdoor fireplace, wrap-around porch seating, a bar area and indoor golf simulators. The simulator stations can be converted for non-golf activity, such as baseball pitching, to appeal to multiple ages and interests. A separate private party room has its own golf simulator that can be used for private functions or weather-proof golf instruction.
Outdoor amenities at the activities pavilion include a kitchen and bar, pool-deck café, kiddie pool, zero-entry, resort-style leisure pool and a 25-meter, eight-lane outdoor competition pool. Tiered, terrace seating takes advantage of the grade for watching competitive swimming events or quiet sunbathing. The pool areas include a fountain and splash pad, as well as in-water chaise lounges.
Updates to the existing clubhouse are being phased to avoid service disruptions. The completed first phase introduced a new women’s lounge and locker room, as well as a new dining corridor and connection to terraces.
Renovations to the men’s locker rooms and the 19th Hole lounge and bar updated those spaces while maintaining a more classical aesthetic. A former mural of the original golf course in the 19th Hole lounge was upgraded to framed artwork and relocated to make way for introduction of a member-prioritized built-in humidor.
Outdoor dining and social terraces adjacent to the clubhouse were also expanded. The next phase will address a needed kitchen expansion and updates to dining venues, along with refreshing other areas.
New Golf Plaza & Putting Green
The Activity Pavilion paved the way for removal of a swimming pool and conversion and expansion of a former bath house into a relocated pro shop, storage/repair garage and plaza amenity between the clubhouse and the first tee. The bath house was an architectural gem, built in the early 1900s. The design exposed the existing wood trusses and supplies 50 percent more floor space and abundant natural light. The modest addition houses restrooms and a concession stand, locating these amenities for convenient access from the course.
The pool was replaced with a new 16,000-square-foot putting green, surrounded by a firepit and seating area. This area has been well-received as an outdoor cocktail lounge offering a 180-degree view of the golf course.
New Paddle Hut
The paddle hut reflects the proportions, detailing and character of British and French-designed garden follies of the Victorian era. The design repeats the chimney element of the activity pavilion. Vertical board and batten detailing is featured on both the façade and interior.
This 850-square-foot building was constructed next to three existing paddle-tennis courts. It provides a warm and comfortable place to relax between games. This was particularly welcome since paddle-tennis is played most often from mid-October to mid-March. The interior lounge for relaxing and socializing includes built-in window seats, a stone fireplace and restrooms. A highlight is the serving counter with built-in kegerator. Improvements also included an expanded heated viewing deck with stand-up tables, lounge seating and a firepit table.
Engaging the Next Generation
The member-owned club has already seen positive results from the expansion – despite the project being completed in the midst of the pandemic. The response was almost immediate. More than double the number of new members, representing an average age of 41, signed up after the project was announced. Equal enthusiasm has come from an influx of new members. They have been rapidly lowering the club’s average age and enabling membership to reach capacity by early 2022.
“Our vision is to provide defining moments in people’s lives regardless of age, gender or family/marital status”
-Ryan Granruth, Club Manager
Photo Credit: Nathan Cox Photography