talk a lot about the "raw talent" of potential
superstars. These athletes possess all the necessary tools
for success on the playing field - speed, quickness and
a desire to excel. But successfully nurturing those skills
and then blending them into a total winning team concept
is the ultimate goal. It is, indeed, the rare leader who
can visualize the big picture, manage the smallest of details
and turn potential into results. Ibis Golf & Country
Club is living proof that Syd Kitson is that kind of leader.
first time I stepped foot on this property, I immediately
recognized what an incredibly special place this is,"
says Kitson, chairman and CEO of Kitson & Partners,
one of the premier golf course and residential real estate
developers and management firms in the country. "All
the pieces were here to make Ibis into a world-class golf
and residential community. The success that we've enjoyed
during the past few years is a testament to the perseverance
and patience of Ibis management as well as to the high expectations
of the residents. I think we can all be proud of our accomplishments."
a few years ago, Ibis looked like an under-performing star
- rich in talent but short on results. Kitson, a former
professional football player with the Green Bay Packers
and Dallas Cowboys, put together a team of partners and
purchased Ibis in 1996, setting in motion an aggressive
strategy for growth and excellence. Now, five years later,
Ibis is recognized as one of the finest golf and residential
developments found anywhere. Last year the spectular renaissance
reached new heights when the Gold Coast Builders Association
honored Ibis as the "Community of the Year."
a tremendous tribute that confirms for all of us that we've
been doing all the right things," says Kitson of the
GCBA Award. "As proud as we are of that achievement,
it's really just an indication of what we can accomplish.
We're far from finished."
living at its finest
three award-winning golf courses, a stunning array of homes
created by some of South Florida's leading builders and
a club environment second to none, Ibis is country club
living at its finest. "Once people take a close look
at what's in place here, they begin to discover that very
few communities can offer prime home sites, championship-caliber
golfing and social opportunities all in one place,"
says Cliff Wilson, general manager for Ibis.
golf courses are creations of the Jack Nicklaus family dynasty.
"The Golden Bear" personally designed and built
the Legend nearly a decade ago, and sons Jack II and Steve
soon followed with designs for the Heritage and the Tradition,
the most recent course added. In keeping with the Nicklaus
reputation, the courses offer challenges and variety to
Ibis residents and members.
addition to these courses, Ibis offers members top-notch
golf instruction. Martin Hall, director of instruction at
Ibis is also a Master Teaching professional for Golf magazine.
"There are only five Master instructors at Golf magazine,"
explains Steve Philbrook, director of Golf operations for
Ibis. "It's an incredible honor for Martin and a huge
advantage for our residents, who can enjoy the exclusive
benefit of improving their game with lessons from a Master."
on the (golf) range
both waterfront and golf course sites available and some
of the most stunning architecture and views possible, there
is a custom home at Ibis for every taste and price range.
is currently developing new neighborhoods with spectacular
water and golf views. For example, home buyers can choose
from golf villas from $170,000 and country-club homes at
over $2 million.
his part, Kitson is committed to maintaining his strategy
for excellence - not just for Ibis, but also for the entire
community. As a Rainbow Recipient of the Adam Walsh Children's
Foundation and a board member of the sprawling Grassy Waters
Wildlife Preserve surrounding Ibis, Kitson actively demonstrates
a genuine concern for the world around him.
passion for excellence is contagious, no matter what he's
involved in," observes Wilson. "He has a knack
for raising the performance level of everyone around him,
which is what star players are known for. We feel very fortunate
to have someone like him leading our team."