Published in The Roslyn News, May 23, 2003. Written by By Joe Scotchie.
The Roslyn Country Club is back in business. After the establishment closed down last winter, a new company, the Malachit Group of Mineola, will reopen the club under a new name, The Roslyn Country Club and Recreation LLC.
The club will open on Saturday, May 24. It remains under the ownership of the Cronin Group. But now, the Malachit Group, under the direction of Manny Malekav, a Flower Hill resident, will be operating the club.
Under the Malachit Group, the country club will contain the same amenities as the old one. The Roslyn Country Club covers ten acres of land in Roslyn, in a location on Club Drive. It offers members a swimming pool, a children’s pool, year-round tennis courts, a playground, handball courts, gardens, and snack bar.
Over the past several months, The Roslyn News has received calls and e-mails from several people, all of whom had made reservations at the country club for various functions, including wedding receptions. Manny Malekav said that the club will do whatever it can to honor those reservations or, if necessary to reschedule them. The phone number of the Malachit Group is 877-1677.
Meanwhile, Malekav said his company has high hopes for the new club. As a resident of Flower Hill, Malekav said he has long been familiar with the Roslyn area. Plus, he has many long-standing friends in the country club neighborhood itself.
The Roslyn area, Malekav noted, is grounds for one of the “nicest pieces of landscaping” in Nassau County. The fact that Roslyn remains a growing area with new housing constantly being constructed was also an attraction for the Malachit Group.
The group plans, by next year, to make additions to the club. That would include a miniature golf course, plus the creation of a tennis team which would compete against teams from other clubs.
Other additions would include a “good” caterer, and even a restaurant. Malekav said that local civic associations are assisting the country club with some of these projects. He was quick to add that a new caterer and even a restaurant would not result in much increased traffic for the residential area.
Malekav reiterated that the group has no plans for demolishing the building and constructing, for instance, residential housing in its place. The building will remain as it stands today. Instead, The Malachit Group, he said, will be “cleaning up the area,” doing painting and roofing work to the existing building, and making improvements “all season long.”
Membership fees will now be $500 for residents of the country club neighborhood and $900 for everyone else. “We hope to make the club a better place and to build up a decent membership,” Malekav said.
The May 24 opening represents the latest in a saga that began with legal action taken by the former managers, CCR of Roslyn. CCR had hoped to terminate its lease on the country club. In doing so, the firm had also hoped to raise yearly membership fees, which it claimed were essential for them to stay in business.
Last December, after months of delay, a federal bankruptcy court in Central Islip ruled against the CCR in the lawsuit it had filed against local civic associations.
The defendants were the Civic Association at Roslyn Country Club, the Roslyn Country Civic Association and “all other property owners” in the Roslyn Country Club area. Such groups had resisted efforts to increase membership fees.
During the long legal proceedings, attorneys for the CCR had claimed that they only went the legal route when negotiations with the civic associations had failed. CCR attorneys also claimed that their attempts to raise the fees only reflected current economic conditions. Existing membership fees were not enough to cover the rent, and such matters as pool maintenance, utilities, lifeguard salaries, and other expenses.
Homeowners who paid the old fee were part of a unique situation that came into being in the 1940s, when the Club Drive area was being developed by Levitt and Sons Inc. of Levittown fame. In order to attract residents, Levitt and Sons made country club membership part of the entire homeowner package. Levitt and Sons never operated the club. They simply entered into a lease with a tenant who did the maintenance work.