OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE: White Sulphur Springs, WV – April 14, 2014:
The Greenbrier, the classic American destination resort in the foothills of West Virginia’s Allegheny Mountains, announced today that it has appointed Tennis Hall of Famer Pete Sampras as its first-ever Greenbrier Tennis Pro Emeritus.
For the past two years, Pete Sampras has visited The Greenbrier in September to headline The Greenbrier Champions Tennis Classic-alongside fellow American Hall of Famer John McEnroe at the inaugural event in 2012, and again in 2013, when he teamed up with McEnroe to take on the European challengers of former world #1 Ivan Lendl and current tour player Tommy Haas.
With his appointment as The Greenbrier Tennis Pro Emeritus, Sampras-who spent 286 weeks of his professional tennis career ranked as the #1 player in the world, won 14 Grand Slams and 64 singles championships-continues the storied legacy of tennis at The Greenbrier, which dates back to the 1890s when tennis debuted on the lawn in front of the resort’s still-standing Paradise Row cottages. Since then, The Greenbrier has hosted numerous tennis matches and championships, including The Mason and Dixon Championships in the 1920s and 1930s, with winners including Bill Tilden, Francis Hunter, Vincent Richards and Ellsworth Vines. Today, The Greenbrier’s state-of-the-art Tennis Center boasts five Har-Tru outdoor courts with views of the spectacular surrounding Allegheny Mountains, as well as five recently resurfaced Deco-Turf indoor courts and a modern pro shop.
This past September, under sunny fall skies, two tennis legends graced the Har-Tru* tennis courts of The Greenbrier for a sold out exhibition match. John McEnroe and Pete Sampras became the inaugural contestants in The Greenbrier Champions Tennis Classic, an event that hopes to become an annual staple at the tail end of summer.
The one-day event featured two of the sports greatest living stars, who together hold 21 career Grand Slam men’s single titles. McEnroe and Sampras participated in pro-ams and VIP events throughout the day as well.
The match kicked off with entertaining entrances by the tennis Hall of Famers, with McEnroe walking on the court to the song, “Johnny Be Good,” and Sampras following to the tune of “Born in the USA.” At one point during the match, McEnroe took off his shirt and threw it into the crowd, to the delight of a female spectator who caught it and clutched it to her chest. Sampras, in turn, removed his wristbands, throwing them into the crowd as souvenirs of the exhibition match.
After losing the first set to McEnroe, Sampras took the second set and went on to best McEnroe in a close 10-8 tiebreaker finish. The match’s setting in the intimate Tennis Club at The Greenbrier allowed for friendly interaction between the players, umpire, linesmen, and the crowd-with McEnroe displaying some of his trademark courtside banter, at one point saying, “Hey umpire, the ball was out; even I saw it was out!” in reference to his own ball. “Whenever I play John, I see fear in the eyes of the umpire,” quipped Sampras.
“It’s nice to see The Greenbrier bring tennis to the forefront,” said McEnroe. “The crowd was really nice… and guys like Pete come around once every 20 years.”
*Did you know the first Har-Tru tennis court debuted in 1932 in Hagerstown, MD? The company’s proprietary court surface, while often referred to as clay, is actually made up of crushed stone. The surface has a number of advantages, including reduced injuries and resistance to cracking. The Greenbrier Sporting Club is proud to offer its Har-Tru tennis courts to members.
Tiger Woods announced Monday that he will be playing in this year’s Greenbrier Classic, joining a strong field for the PGA TOUR event set for July 2-8. Tiger definitely brings an added layer of excitement to the popular event that won “Best in Class” from the PGA TOUR in 2011 and looks to continue that trend this year with another impressive field of players and concert lineups, including Toby Keith, Lionel Richie, The Fray, Rod Stewart and Bon Jovi.
Already committed to play in this year’s Greenbrier Classic are Phil Mickelson, who failed to make the cut last year and is looking for a little revenge on the Old White TPC course, Tom Watson, the resort’s pro emeritus, Sergio Garcia, Kenny Perry, returning champs Stuart Appleby and Scott Stallings, and a host of other players looking to take home part of the tournament’s $6.1 million purse.
While Tiger has struggled recently on the TOUR, the 72-time event winner still commands enormous crowds and ticket sales are already heating up. His presence alone is a huge coup for the Greenbrier Classic, in only its third year, and is one of only three new tournaments Tiger has added to his schedule in the past year.
With the Greenbrier Classic quickly becoming a favorite stop for TOUR players, you can expect the field and excitement to build until Thursday morning’s tee-off. With badges starting at only $189 for the entire week and free access to all of the Concert Series.
Members of the Greenbrier Sporting Club will have the luxury of being within walking distance of this exciting event in addition to having access to The Greenbrier resort’s amenities, including fine dining, a five-star spa, designer boutiques, indoor pool, casino, ballrooms, and four of the best golf courses in West Virginia.
The annual Sam Snead Festival will be held at The Greenbrier on May 20-22, 2012. This popular event honors the memory, achievements. and sportsmanship of golfing legend and professional Sam Snead who called The Greenbrier home for more than 60 years, acting as the resort’s golf professional emeritus up until his death in 2002.
The event originated in 1948 and has featured such golf greats as Ben Hogan, Bob Hope, Arnold Palmer, and Gary Player. Originally called The Greenbrier Open, it became known as the Sam Snead Festival in 1957 after Sam won the open three years in a row. Events include a welcome reception, practice rounds, players’ reception, awards luncheon, and a gala to celebrate Sam’s 100th birthday.
The 36-hole, Pro-Am tournament will be played on two of The Greenbrier’s championship courses, The Greenbrier and The Old White TPC. Teams consist of a PGA or LPGA club or touring professional and four amateur players. The Greenbrier course was originally designed by Seth Raynor in 1924. In 1977, it was redesigned by Jack Nicklaus. Charles Blair Macdonald designed The Old White TPC course, which opened in 1914. President Woodrow Wilson was one of the first to play its large fairways and challenging greens.
Sam Snead was born in Ashwood, Virginia in 1912. Nicknamed “Slammin’ Sammy” because of his strong, lengthy drives, he was admired by many for his smooth swing. He and his trademark straw hat have graced several covers of Sports Illustrated and Time magazine.
The top golf player in the world for nearly four decades, Sam won a record 82 PGA Tour events and 70 others worldwide. His wins include three Masters, three PGA championships and one British Open. Sam is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame.
Playing golf on The Snead Course is an exclusive benefit to members of The Greenbrier Sporting Club. Designed by Tom Fazio, this par 71 course opened in 2004. It features five sets of tees and a practice range that allows up to 30 golfers at a time. The course has target greens, simulated holes and a short game section with a fairway, green, and bunker shots.
The newly unveiled Windsor Club at The Greenbrier is a deluxe collection of premier accommodations including the most outstanding service and amenities in our history. This club isn’t for everyone. An entire wing of The Greenbrier is reserved solely for the enjoyment of our most selective guests. The Windsor Club is a secluded sanctuary of relaxation and luxury surrounded by the world-class excitement of The Greenbrier. Combining centuries of southern hospitality with supreme service and contemporary comforts, a new era of elegance awaits you at The Windsor Club.
Every detail sparkles in the crown jewel of America’s Resort. You’ll quickly realize why The Duke and Duchess were repeated guests to The Greenbrier. Reminiscent of things past but with thoroughly modern touches, a great feeling of luxury and comfort awaits you with modern amenities, designer décor, state-of-the art electronics, all presented in The Greenbrier tradition of exceptional quality. Privilege begins at once, with express check-in, and continues throughout your stay in The Windsor Club. Each of the 26 rooms has a distinctive personality and charm all its own. Even the ambiance is personalized according to your preferences. Smart Room Technology sets the scene for an unforgettable stay with customized temperature, illumination and sound synchronized to your expressed desires.
The moment you enter The Windsor Club, you’ll feel like a VIP. The elite wing of the resort is accessible by keycard only and the accommodations include exclusive upgrades such as private Concierge service, plush canopy beds with imported Italian linens, VIP turndown services, special in-room gifts and several rooms feature a gas fireplace. The Virginia Room is a private parlor with a lush, access-only garden and courtyard reserved exclusively for the pleasure of The Windsor Club guests. Sumptuous meals and snacks are served graciously throughout the day and evening in The Virginia Room. The stately lounge is furnished with specially selected antiquities collected over centuries and guests can relax and enjoy a wide selection of complementary beverages at the open bar any time, day or night.
Every generation has its legends at The Greenbrier. In a world-famous resort renowned for unsurpassed luxury, The Windsor Club is the pinnacle of panache. We invite you to experience the select services, privileges and benefits that celebrities, dignitaries and heads of state have enjoyed here for centuries.
For more information about The Windsor Club, visit The Greenbrier’s website here.
It’s hard to believe that construction on the Casino Club at The Greenbrier began only 10 months ago. Indeed, it’s a magnificent feat of construction. Photographer Mike Wyatt installed a time-lapse camera that captured the building process from the first shovel of dirt to the re-landscaping of the main entrance. Of particular interest in the below video, which squeezes the whole 10 months into a little over 3 minutes, are the massive snow storms we experienced in December of 2009 and January of 2010.
Some Raw Statistics of the construction of the Casino Club at The Greenbrier:
• There were 130,000 cubic yards of excavation with 18,000 cubic yards of dirt put back on the site
• Over 50,000 tons of stone were used
• Six tenths of a mile of cobblestone curbing were laid
• Over 70,000 brick pavers were used
• The project includes one mile of storm piping
• 17,060 Cubic yards of concrete were used (this is enough concrete to pave a sidewalk from The Greenbrier to Beckley)
• 980 tons of reinforcing steel were used
• 2,500 tons of structural steel were used in the project
• One mile of cast iron pipe, two miles of domestic water pipe and two miles of mechanical piping were used
• 65 miles of new fiber optic and copper data communication cables were installed.
• 92 tons of sheet metal were used
• 960 tons of cooling capacity was built
• 19 miles of conduit and 100 miles of wire were used
• 1.5 megawatts of power generation capability was built to handle emergency electrical needs
• Seven miles of crown molding are found throughout the project