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Traditional elegance the norm

February 06, 2003

Traditional elegance. That's the best way to describe the newly

reconstructed clubhouse at Mesa Verde Country Club -- a $7-million,

4,200-square foot project which is transforming the club.

Visitors see a difference as soon as they drive up with about a

half dozen pine trees, spaded off the golf course, transplanted in

the front entrance.

The main dining room is wide and expanded farther out than the old

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one, providing stunning views of the golf course. A fireplace at the

entrance of the upper-level dining room is the centerpiece of the

two-tiered main lobby area.

"The concept (of the new facility) lends heritage to the whole

golf course with its richness and landscape," said Paul Anderson of

the architectural firm (Marsh & Associates) that reconstructed the

clubhouse. "I wouldn't want to categorize it ... (the project's new

look) is driven by the placement of the sites, the views and the

colors surrounding the landscape. The overall design intent is to

bring out (the club's) heritage and richness."

Added Mesa Verde General Manager Kim Porter: "It's elegant, but

still like home."

The browns give the inside a warm feeling, while the abundance of

windows allows onlookers to indulge with myriad views. There are new

balconies, as well, including outside of the spiffy banquet room

(formerly the Tony Lema Room), which could become Orange County's

next hotspot for weddings and receptions.

"We're booking weddings now," Porter said. "We're booking weddings

like crazy. Once we're up and running, we'll be hopping ... it's

tough to beat the views."

Especially at sunset.

The newly constructed clubhouse at Mesa Verde lends itself to the

ideal setting for a cool ocean breeze, an endless sunset and the

comfort of a classic, yet warm environment, nestled high above the

golf course's landscape.

"It doesn't have the feel of a huge structure," Anderson said.

"It's an atmosphere more like home ... the intention of our firm was

nothing monumental. We just wanted a good, comfortable, functional

golf course clubhouse, while also trying to take advantage of the

views."

The old clubhouse, built in 1959, had a patio and balcony, but few

members ever sat there, because was ocean breezes were a little too

chilly. Now, with the main dining room pushed farther out, it blocks

some of the wind on the balcony adjacent to the banquet room

(capacity 250).

The clubhouse also complies fully with state and federal handicap

codes. It didn't before.

The Olympic pool and diving pool are also out at Mesa Verde,

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