Wequassett Sale Makes History With Town’s Highest Purchase Price Ever

By: Alan Pollock

Topics: Business , Tourism , Real estate

The Wequassett Resort and Golf Club.

EAST HARWICH — When a New York-based investment firm purchased the Wequassett Resort and Golf Club for nearly $105 million last week, it made history in Harwich, and not just for taking ownership of a flagship resort that’s nearly a century old. It’s the most expensive private real estate sale in the town’s history.

EOS Investors purchased the main resort property for $101,990,000, as well as an adjacent parcel at 4 Cove Landing Rd. for $3 million.

The investment firm also paid another $1 million for the property at 215 Stony Hill Rd. in Chatham, which the Wequassett has used for employee dormitories.

Richard Waystack, chairman of the Harwich Board of Assessors, confirmed the sale’s record-breaking status. The next-highest sale price wasn’t even close to the $104.99 million Wequassett figure.

“The [next] highest sale I found was in 2004 for 111 Headwaters Dr.,” he said. The former Cranberry Pointe nursing home sold to Nationwide Health Properties on behalf of Wingate of Harwich for $12,927,000.

For comparison purposes, the Wequassett sale price is higher than any private property transfer in recent years in Chatham, but not higher than the $166 million sale of the 217-room, 24-acre Chatham Bars Inn property in 2006. Accounting for inflation and the massive increases in real estate values in recent years, the CBI sale price would undoubtedly be much higher today.

But setting aside that sale, the most expensive real estate transfers in Chatham’s recent history are all under $20 million, with the recent sale of the Wayside Inn topping the list at $18 million. The most expensive residential property sale in town was $13 million, for a large estate and related buildings at 300 Stage Neck Rd., at the bend in the Oyster River.

A search of property sales in Orleans back to 2005 showed the highest price was $11 million paid for a waterfront property at 16 Snow Way; the runner-up was $6.4 million for an estate on Brick Hill Road in 2013.

In Brewster, the most expensive real estate sale came in 2008, with the sale of 873 Harwich Rd. for nearly $21.76 million. The former nursing home is now Serenity Apartments at Brewster. The town’s next most expensive purchase was the $20 million that Brewster taxpayers paid last year for the Cape Cod Sea Camps property at 3057 Main St.

Harwich Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Cyndi Williams said she’s pleased with the announcement made by EOS Investors that the Wequassett will continue to be operated as a world-class resort.

“They’re not looking to change anything,” she said. The resort has a certain culture and atmosphere that is unique, she noted.

“When you buy something like that, if it’s not broken, add to it,” she said.

With a general loss of lodging rooms in town in recent years, maintaining Wequassett’s 120 rooms is important to the town’s economy. Like the former Stonehorse Motel in South Harwich, the Coachman Motel in Harwich Port was recently converted to serve as dormitories for seasonal workers.

During the pandemic, four of the town’s inns and bed and breakfast establishments traded ownership, though all will remain open as lodging businesses, Williams said. There is still sufficient capacity for all visitors to Harwich to find places to stay in town, she said.

“And all the properties are saying they’re going to have a good season,” she added.

Wequassett adds to EOS Investment’s holdings on Cape Cod; last November, the firm purchased the Red Jacket Resorts, including five properties on Cape Cod and one in New Hampshire, from the Davenport family. The sale price was not disclosed. EOS’s portfolio of New England resorts now numbers 17 properties, including more than 1,000 guest rooms and more than 20 restaurants and bars. Focusing largely on visitors who come from within driving distance, the resorts generate nearly $125 million of annual revenue, the company reported.

In addition to the inn, the Wequassett resort has four restaurants, including Twenty-Eight Atlantic, the only restaurant on Cape Cod to have been awarded five stars by Forbes. It boasts indoor and outdoor conference spaces, a children’s center, two pools and four tennis courts. Guests have access to play on the private 18-hole Cape Cod National golf course.