The lease to the state-owned Patriots Point Links Golf Course is being turned over to one of the area's most prolific real estate developers.
The Patriots Point Development Authority's board voted unanimously Friday to transfer the rights to operate the 18-hole property to Michael Bennett of Charleston-based Bennett Hospitality.
The Mount Pleasant course, which was opened in 1979, had been leased to the Philadelphia-based investment firm Lubert-Adler and is managed by Atlanta-based Mosaic Clubs and Resorts.
Bennett was not present at Friday's board meeting.
Whether Mosaic will remain as manager will be up to Bennett Hospitality once the transfer is finalized, said Mac Burdette, executive director at Patriots Point.
The public course joins Bennett's other Patriots Point parcels, including two that Lubert-Adler transferred to Bennett about three years ago. Bennett also controls the long-term lease to a 61-acre property at Patriots Point that he will use to develop a resort that would generate income for the maritime museum.
The addition of the golf course to Bennett is another "piece of the puzzle" for plans he has for various investments at Patriots Point, Burdette said.
"He's making it part of his destination," he said.
Under the lease agreement, the state-owned military museum collects 17.5 percent of the golf course's "qualifying" annual revenue. For the 2018 fiscal year, that came to $338,255, which would put the total amount generated at about $1.93 million.
Income from the course has been consistent for the past several years and is "as good as it could be given what the golf course is," Burdette said. He added that the board hopes Bennett will make improvements to the waterfront layout at some point and boost its profitability.
The lease transfer requires one more approval by a state panel in Columbia, probably early next year.
Just steps down the road from the golf links, Bennett is developing a $325 million mixed-use complex on privately owned land. His Ferry Wharf project stretches for 18 acres just off Charleston Harbor and will include hotels, apartments and retail space. Work on an office building and parking garage next to the Ravenel Bridge is already underway.
Bennett and his firm also own numerous hotel and restaurant holdings across the Charleston peninsula, including the eight-story Hotel Bennett, which is scheduled to open on Marion Square in January.
A representative for the company could not be reached for comment Friday.