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Royal Vista, favored golf course among Korean golfers in SoCal, closes on Feb. 29

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Royal Vista Golf Course, a favored destination among Korean golfers in Southern California, is set to become a part of history.

The course will remain open until February 29, after which the site will be repurposed for housing and park development.

Opened in 1963, Royal Vista features 27 holes spread over 65 acres on its South, East, and North courses. It has been particularly popular with Koreans since 2010 when RVGC Partners, a Korean-American investment group, acquired the management rights for $8 million.

In 2015, as housing development started to pick up momentum following the subprime crisis in 2009, a construction company proposed to develop the property. This proposal, however, was met with resistance from residents who argued that it would alter the character of the golf course neighborhood and devalue nearby homes.

Royal Vista golf course.

 

Despite these challenges, Royal Vista faced operational difficulties through 2016. Last year, the development project gained new momentum when the landowner of the East Course expressed interest in constructing a 500-unit residential complex. This complex aims to offer a variety of housing options, including single-family homes, condominiums, and apartments. The project has received backing from both Rowland Heights and the County of Los Angeles.

The latest update on the Royal Vista Residential Project, released late last year, suggests that the area surrounding the East Course will be preserved in its natural state, potentially featuring a park or walking trail. The development plan is also accessible in Korean at https://royalvistaresidential.com/ko/.

The County of Los Angeles completed an environmental study by January 5, 2024, determining that the development would lead to environmental degradation but would not significantly impact residents’ health. The findings of this study are available for public review at the Rowland Heights Library, Walnut Library, and Diamond Bar Library.

Royal Vista has attracted a large Korean community in East Los Angeles and Orange County, thanks to its ownership by a Korean-American investment group. The course is a cherished gathering place for Korean and Chinese golfers, including a women’s club, and holds nostalgic value for many.

“It’s a place where we’ve been exercising and socializing together for more than 10 years, and it’s sad that it’s suddenly going to disappear completely,” shared a Korean club member. “We’ll discuss it and find a way to move the meeting to another place.”

BY BRIAN CHOI, JUNHAN PARK [ichoi@koreadaily.com]