Balboa Bay Club, Newport Beach Country Club sold

The iconic Balboa Bay Club & Resort, a fixture along Newport Harbor for more than 60 years, has been sold, a spokesman said Friday.

The sale also includes the Newport Beach Country Club, a private club near Fashion Island.

International Bay Clubs Inc. (IBC), which owned the BBC and the Newport Beach Country Club, was sold to Delaware-based Seven-One Capital-Business Inc.

Seven-One is owned by a Chinese businessman, Winston Chung.

A news release described Chung as "a battery scientist, inventor and successful entrepreneur with several businesses in Southern California."

He founded Winston Battery in Shenzhen, China. He gave $10 million to UC Riverside's engineering program in 2011, making him the largest individual donor in UCR history.

IBC is owned by Beverly Ray Parkhurst, who has been involved with the BBC for more than 40 years and the country club since the mid-1980s. She will remain on the board of directors.

"The Balboa Bay Club and this community hold a special place in my heart, and I have always worked tirelessly to continue the legacy started by my late husband all those years ago," Parkhurst said in a statement. "With a strong management team beside me, I am proud of all that I have been able to accomplish. Now with this sale, and the management team staying intact, I believe the future can only be bigger and brighter than it is today."

The sale price was not disclosed for the Mariner's Mile property at 1221 W. Coast Hwy. The deal is expected to close in 30 days, according to IBC.

"It was an attractive offer presented by Mr. Chung," said IBC spokesman Peter Bretschger. "He just fell in love with the property."

Chung plans to keep the current management team in place, Bretschger said.

David Wooten will remain president and chief executive officer of the holding company. Henry Schielein will remain president and chief operating officer of the BBC, and Perry Dickey will continue as president and COO of the Newport Beach Country Club, 1600 E. Coast Hwy.

Employees at the BBC and the country club have been notified and are expected to keep their current positions.

Parkhurst's late husband, William Ray, bought the Bay Club in 1971, and operated it until his death in 1991. Since then, the BBC property was remodeled to include a 160-room resort. There is also a private club, marina and 145 apartments.

IBC bought the Newport Beach Country Club in 1985. The 18-hole course hosts the Toshiba Classic, a stop on the PGA Champions Tour. A new clubhouse, set to replace a more than 50-year-old facility, is planned.

"I want to assure the members of NBCC, that financing will be provided for the new golf clubhouse and other improvements to the course and facilities," Chung said in a statement. "A great deal of work has already been done on this new project, and we want to continue the momentum currently underway. Our goal will be to achieve world-class status for this outstanding golf course, situated in such a premier coastal location here in Newport Beach."

Chung, according to the news release, hopes to one day build a project similar to the Balboa Bay Club in China.

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