Friday, January 12, 2024
Braemar Racquet Center
Braemar's new tennis and pickleball facilities in tarzana, CA
ClubCorps recently announced they’re rebranding as Invited. Braemar Country Club and Racquet Center in Los Angeles is a great example of Invited’s new direction, continuing to grow with all new pickleball courts.
By The National Business Post Staff
November 14, 2022
Up and away from LA’s bustling traffic scene, off the 101, tucked into an oasis of a hillside north of Ventura Blvd., one can bask in the silence of birds chirping and balls being hit across court or on the fairway. Welcome to Braemar.
It’s a quiet Friday evening and the sun has just begun to set over the golf course. No one would know that you are just moments away from the major metropolitan city sounds of Los Angeles. Now celebrating its 63 years as an established club in Southern California, Braemar continues to provide its members with a unique golf experience along with many other recreational opportunities.
Striving to be a special family place, it’s a country club and more. An escape. A lifestyle. And for greater LA, an amazing bargain. Braemar has never looked so good to its membership of more than 2000 families.
Boasting 27 holes of golf, the courses are scenic, tight and challenging. Currently there are 25 racquet courts… 18 for tennis and seven for the fastest growing game in the county, pickleball. Add to that, two pristine swimming pools and a beautiful 4,600 square foot fitness center that earlier this year enjoyed a $250,000 makeover and expansion. Its partnership with Life Fitness has members using state-of-the-art fitness equipment, along with two Peleton bikes.
Braemar is owned by ClubCorp, the Dallas based company who earlier this year, rebranded themselves as INVITED. Upgrades and the rebranding have kept the company vibrant and its nationwide membership growing. Braemar’s Tarzana facility underwent a $5 million golf facelift in 2011, at a time when the golf industry and specifically the private club business was falling on hard times. What may have been viewed as a risky investment then, now looks like a shrewd business move, as ownership has turned a beautiful property, into a more family friendly facility with a growing membership.
Then in 2018, Braemar received the green light to update its tennis clubhouse and deck. The $4 million expansion added more tables on the deck, beautiful furniture creating a great spot for a post-match drink or a bite to eat. While Covid put much of the nation’s travel and hospitality industry on the ropes, wiping out some four million jobs, Braemar emerged stronger than ever.
“Due to Covid, in the spring of 2020, we shut down food and beverage operations except for our take-out and made it available for members. We were forced to furlough all but a few essential workers,” General Manager Ryan Wingo recounts, “but we allowed golfers to walk the course.”
Smart move. It was a hole in one.
When the pandemic hit, California became one of the most locked down regions of the country. One of the few chances to escape the pandemic protocols was a round of golf. Public courses were suddenly packed, tee times at a premium. Golf in short was making a comeback via Covid and for a growing number of born-again hackers, investing in a private club made sense.
“The pandemic was the catalyst for the golf comeback,” explains Wingo. “People wanted to get out and get away. The game itself is addicting, and that’s what made them spend the money to join a private club. It’s a chance to have fun, get out and socialize with people for some four hours, and in this city, unfortunately, now, we haven’t been doing that as often, especially with Covid.”
As a private member club, a golf membership at Braemar is a solid value proposition. There is a $10,000 initiation fee and dues of less than $1,000 per month. That buys golf for the family – Mom and Dad and kids – and recently the age changed from 23 to 26 for kids to maintain their family status. It also offers full access to all the club’s other amenities which includes a full slate of seasonal activities, reciprocity golf and dining at more than 200 other golf, resort and lodging properties around the country, all creating additional incentives for becoming a member.
Braemar offers members three different courses, all quite narrow and challenging

Today, golf memberships out number racquet memberships by roughly a 3-1 margin, but racquet sports, may be Braemar’s best bargain. Initiation for Braemar’s racquet sports membership is $1500, with monthly dues around $335 for a family.
Dr. Ken Lodin joined Braemar as a tennis member in 2001. “It was one of the best decisions I have ever made. There are so many levels of members. You can play competitivly, the games can be made for you and there’s opportunity to meet so many people from all different walks of life.”
He has enjoyed playing on several USTA doubles teams at Braemar competing against other clubs throughout Southern California. The club also offers Play Sight Smart Court Video Technology – an app allowing players to use video technology in order to analyze their game and strokes. Members can be taped and review their own session via their phone, iPad or computer.
Along with regulation tennis, Braemar, now offers pickleball. With the recent explosion of the game, Braemar has added a total of seven courts and has included specific pickleball events to the calendar throughout the year. Pickleball is a racquet sport infusing the feel of tennis with the speed of ping-pong.
“It’s really a fun social game,” comments Lodin. “easy to learn with plenty of action.”
As with golf memberships, racquet members have access to swimming, the fitness center, food and beverage options and seasonal events, as well as limited access to Invited’s national network of properties.
The post pandemic squeeze on supplies and prices has yet to seriously impact the Braemar bottom line. Despite a recent increase in dues, membership continues to grow.
“We have a competitive advantage over a lot of the other clubs in our market. We have younger members, and we have a lot of programs that cater to the kids; golf specific camps, tennis specific camps and a summer camp.”
Other popular member events at Braemar include their July 4th Celebrations, member wine tastings, hosted dinner “date nights” with live music, pool parties, and family holiday gatherings. And for the fitness enthusiasts, there are GroupEx classes, yoga classes, and there is even a book club that meets every month. Truly, there is something for every member of the family. The club also rents out its facilities to the film and television industry. They host over 20 charitable golfing events annually. It is a happening country club with a very involved membership.
“Driving a better member experience is the key to attracting and retaining members”, Wingo explains.
Braemar now boasts more than 850 golf members, more than 700 racquet members and more than 300 social members. And now with Covid in the rear-view mirror, Braemar will only continue to grow as a well-loved Los Angeles based private members’ club with golf, tennis and now pickleball as its foundation in the San Fernando Valley.
*** Editor Note: At the time of this writing, Ryan Wingo was the General Manager of Invited’s Braemar Country Club and Racquet Center, and has since moved on to another position outside of the club.
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