There’s a long-standing tradition of closing a deal over a game of golf. Of course, amid the towering skyscrapers of Midtown and the Financial District, this venerable rite can seem elusive. But in fact, there quite a few excellent courses to close a deal on nearby, some private (requiring a member’s presence or invitation) and some public, but all perfect for tidying up deal terms over 18 holes.
1. Liberty National Golf CourseIf you have access to the Liberty National Golf Course, you may not even need to close new deals. With initiation fees at a hefty $250,000 and a membership that has included Rudy Giuliani, Phil Mickelson and Eli Manning, the Jersey City course is one of the region’s most exclusive. The lucky few who have obtained difficult-to-obtain membership have traveled by high-speed boat or helicopter to the Robert E. Cupp and Tom Kite-designed course, which boasts breathtaking views of the New York City skyline and the Statue of Liberty. After a round of golf, there are a slew of facilities to which you can retire, including a library decorated like a gentlemen’s club, cigar terrace, formal dining room and cocktail lounge.
100 Caven Point Road, Jersey City, New Jersey libertynationalgc.com
2. Winged Foot Golf ClubTo impress a serious golfer, Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, N.Y., will certainly prove you know your stuff. The private, A.W. Tillinghast-designed course has hosted numerous PGA championships and is famous as a challenging course: Even the best golfers have stumbled here, thanks to long, complicated holes with narrow fairways, thick rough and loads of bunkering. Almost as iconic as the course is the clubhouse designed by architect Clifford Wendehack. This members club eschews tee times, so it’s ideal for golfers with unpredictable schedules.
851 Fenimore Road, Mamaroneck, N.Y., wfgc.org
3. Van Cortlandt Golf CourseLocated in the Bronx, Van Cortlandt Golf Course, known as Vanny, may not seem like the most glamorous place to take a colleague. However, as the U.S.’s first public course, Van Cortland has a lengthy history. The links were frequented by greats including the Three Stooges, Babe Ruth and Willie Mays. Thanks to a brand new renovation of the clubhouse and greens, it’s also a pleasure to play. Wrap up your round in the famous clubhouse locker room where Gordon Gekko changed in the movie Wall Street. But try to avoid deals that attract the scrutiny of the S.E.C.
115 Van Cortlandt Park South, Bronx, N.Y., golfnyc.com/vancortlandt
4. Piping Rock ClubPiping Rock Club is deeply entwined with the history of America’s wealthiest, counting Jackie Onassis and Cole Porter among its patrons. The club was founded in the early 1900s with a focus on polo and equestrian sports. The primary activity has long since shifted to golf, but Piping Rock remains a throwback to another era and a bastion of refinement, with a strict dress code and no cell phone use allowed on the property. After a round of golf, enjoy a martini in the clubhouse designed by Guy Lowell and built in 1911 to complete your Mad Men-esque experience.
150 Piping Rock Road, Locust Valley, N.Y., pipingrockclub.org
5. Bethpage BlackBethpage Black is the grande dame of the New York area’s public golf courses, even hosting the U.S. Open in 2002 and 2009. Located in Bethpage State Park, Black is actually one of five golf courses on the property. Black, Red, Blue and Green were designed by A.W. Tillinghast in the 1930s, and the Alfred Tull-designed Yellow course opened in 1958. Despite all of the options, Black is the only one that is world renowned, making it the one we would recommend for conducting business. Tee times are difficult to obtain and highly coveted, so there is still a prestige factor, despite the fact that the course is open to the public.
99 Quaker Meetinghouse Road, Farmingdale, N.Y., nysparks.com/golf-courses