Marrakesh Community Association & Country Club General Manager/COO
Marrakesh Community Association & Country Club
Palm Desert, CA


The Opportunity

Marrakesh Community Association and Country Club (Marrakesh) is looking for an engaged, high energy General Manager/Chief Operating Officer (GM/COO). He or She will be a visible, proactive, transparent team leader for the Association. The future GM/COO will have personal communication skills, leadership and team building orientation, and have a clear focus on providing exceptional club and resident services.  There will be an understanding of the trends in clubs and communities along with experience in strategic planning and its process which are the key strengths Marrakesh is seeking.

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New York Times Article about Marrakesh Country Club

History of Marrakesh
The green vistas, homes and appointments at Marrakesh Country Club are features of Johnny Dawson's dream. Dawson, was a young Chicagoan with a winning personality, a famous golfer and experienced golf club developer, who envisioned a unique, beautiful community that would stand out from others, a community of elegance that would appeal to everyone who appreciated a value.
On July 6, 1968 Johnny met with Elisabeth Stewart to lease one hundred and fifty-five acres on which she had originally planned to build a family ranch. Unlike other club sites, the acre-age was wind free with spectacular views of snow-capped mountains. To design the homes, Dawson picked an architectural designer that he had been unable to get for Eldorado, John Elgin Woolf. Woolf was the most famous architect of the time. Architectural Digest, Town and Country and Vogue featured his projects and Ira Gershwin, Greta Garbo, John Wayne and Judy Garland were among his clients. Secondly, the project needed to set itself apart from eighteen other golf clubs being built. That was easy; none had homes as widely spaced, nor as beautiful, as Woolf's "Hollywood Regency" styling’s. Regency's theatrical style is one of restrained opulence with carefully scaled architectural elements in perfect balance.
For more on the life on John Elgin Woolf, Click here.
In 1978 all fourteen phases of the Marrakesh Country Club were completed. Three hundred and sixty-four Woolf designed homes were separated into fourteen neighborhoods, each having about two dozen homes, a pool and a shady pool pavilion. The Marrakesh of yesterday is the Marrakesh of tomorrow.  Although cutting edge technical conveniences, building systems and environmental conservation techniques are continuously being adopted, the exterior appearance of Marrakesh homes and pools is sacrosanct. These homes are a continuing example of Hollywood Regency architecture. The Architecture and Landscape Committee, composed primarily of Marrakesh members who are professionals in design and construction, is dedicated to their preservation.
Some 40 years later, the Club began and completed, the process of Acquisition for all of the leasehold interest on all underlying land of the club, community and residences. In November of 2015, the outright land purchase was completed, and Marrakesh became a “fee simple” real estate location for the Club and all of its Residents.
The members of Marrakesh are bound in a remarkable tradition of highly distinctive style, in both architecture and landscape, and a strong commitment to one another, to the club, to the community and to our staff.  We have a history of inclusiveness and diversity in age, origin, and background remarkable for a private club. This tradition is the result of a happy confluence of circumstances and history that have given us a much desired location in Coachella valley, a manageable scale to our residential and recreational space, a structure of governance and finance combining Club and community, and, perhaps, most of all, a membership that has shared the aesthetic and social values of Marrakesh over the generations. The distinctive design heritage of Marrakesh, the commonality of our shared responsibility for this heritage, and the very evident culture of caring that has drawn so many here to stay, is the central and compelling focus of our mission.

The Mission of Marrakesh is to provide a welcoming, inclusive community which:
  • respects and values all members and employees;
  • provides social, dining and recreational opportunities which encourage the interaction of its members and guests;
  • preserves and upholds its unique architectural, landscape and cultural heritage;
  • follows sound and transparent principles of finance and governance, maintaining high ethical standards. 
Marrakesh members highly value interaction with each other, in both organized and informal settings, which include social events, formal dining, casual meals and beverages, games and outdoor activities. The culture of caring that binds the members together also extends to our employees and the members’ relationships with them, as a part of the Marrakesh community.
Our Mission is supported by Club Goals and action plans in each of the following areas:
  • Governance
  • Finance
  • Membership
  • Communications
  • Social and Dining
  • Facilities
  • Security
  • Management and Employee
  • $6.5M Annual operating revenue
  • $800,000 Annual F&B revenue
  • $2.0M in Cash Reserves
  • 11 Board members, 3 year terms
  • Homeowners become Club members upon home purchase
  • $15,000 Club Affiliation Fee at time of home purchase
  • California Non-Profit Mutual Benefit Corporation
  • 25,000 square foot Clubhouse
  • 18-hole Executive Course 
Recent Accomplishments: 
  • Acquisition of the leasehold interest on all of the underlying land of the club, community and residences. The land has been purchased outright by the Club and residents
  • A new irrigation system was installed on the golf course
  • Master landscape plan for the golf course and addition of desertscape for water conservation
  • $2.0M in road resurfacing was completed 
Planned future improvements:
  • Complete master landscape plan for the common area
  • Plan major refurbishment of the clubhouse
  • Future refurbishment/replacement of Administration facility
Please visit the website at: Marrakesh Country Club

General Manager/COO Position

The General Manager/Chief Operating Officer (GM/COO) will be hired by the club board of directors, reports to the club president and is accountable to the Board, and is responsible for carrying out the board’s policies. The General Manager/COO will be held accountable for all areas of the club and community operations. He/she will be the visible, face of the club allowing the board to work on the holistic and long-term focus of club governance. He/she will prepare such special reports as may be requested by the board and will report back on the effectiveness of the club’s policies, operations and new programs.
The characteristics of a successful GM/COO include visibility, honesty, straightforwardness, integrity, accountability, leadership and dedication. He/she must demonstrate interpersonal relations skills, be an affable, clear, concise communicator, be administratively competent and be able to communicate the club’s vision.
Direct Reports: 
  • Assistant GM/Controller
  • Golf Course/Common Area Superintendent
  • Head Golf Professional
  • Community Services/Security
  • Clubhouse Manager
  • Executive Assistant, HR, Member Services
Key Responsibilities:
  • The General Manager/COO (GM/COO) has clear responsibility for day-to-day operations of Marrakesh Country Club and HOA, as well as complete responsibility for the longer term management and oversight of all functions of the Club and HOA. 
  • He/She will be responsible to manage key activities and assets such as Food and Beverage Services, Golf Operations and Course maintenance, HOA & Homeowner landscape and construction matters, in addition to Tennis, Aquatics, and Community and Association relationships.
  • The GM/COO is a partner with the governing board in achieving the club/community’s mission and discusses issues confronting the club suggests possible outcomes with the governing board.
  • He/she also assists the governing board in developing a format for assessing the progress of the club/community, protecting its architectural heritage, and reviews any issues of concern with the governing board.
  • The GM/COO keeps the governing board apprised of the organizational climate, identifying problems either actual or anticipated, communicates with the directors, and offers consultative assistance as well as shares responsibility with the governing board for the club/community’s organizational development and organizational change programs.
  • Actively engaged with the larger Coachella Valley community and club associations
Specific Duties:
  • Monitors long- and short-term objectives, financial reports and in concert with the Finance Committee, prepares both a current financial plan and longer ranges forecasts for the Club and Community.
  • Sets the standard for effective leadership, management, maintaining a high level of ethics, prudence, creativity, productivity and demonstrating a concern for the mentoring, supervision and development of the management team and staff.
  • Helps the board to arrive at a consensus about important matters by providing pertinent information and interacts with the board and key staff members to investigate more efficient operating procedures and new club/community activities.
  • Apprises the governing board of trends, changing circumstances and unexpected occurrences that could call for innovation or adaptation of the strategic plan.
  • Oversee the preparation of monthly and annual financial reports.
  • Work with the Finance Committee to prepare an annual budget and support an annual audit.
  • Helps to set and maintain high standards for all facilities, services and communications.
  • Oversees all programs, services and activities to ensure that objectives are met.
  • Coordinates and edits all membership and public relations communications.
  • Maintains a comprehensive knowledge of operational procedures and principles used throughout the club/community and takes responsibility in developing, maintaining and documenting consistent procedures.
  • Has knowledge of key situations or problems facing the club/community.
  • Monitors all construction and projects in progress in order to achieve the Board’s objectives and provides feedback to the governing board on the progress being made.
  • The GM/COO will support continuing education for key managers.
  • Act as a non-voting staff member on the Architectural Landscape Committee.
  • Engage in assertive outreach to all residents and onboarding of new residents.
  • Work with onsite Real Estate professionals to ensure that the potential buyers understand the community.
Qualifications & Experience
  • A verifiable record of working closely and successfully with club and HOA boards and active committees.
  • Extensive POA or HOA management and leadership experience.
  • CCAM license preferred.
  • A verifiably unblemished career track that demonstrates a record of tenure and commitment to previous employers, where career moves were for enhancement of skills and experiences.
  • Ability to sustain a culture of quality service.
  • Knowledgeable in “best practices” in top performing and high member satisfaction clubs/communities around the country.
  • Strong general management skills with verifiable strengths in leadership, financial performance, people skills, and recreational amenity management. Especially strong credentials are preferred in quality food and beverage programming, exceptional member/guest service relations, strategic planning, and project management.
  • Experience in a member-owned club/community environment is critical.  The GM/COO is ultimately responsible for all assets and components of Marrakesh Country Club and the HOA. 
  • Verifiable ability to attract, hire, develop and lead a high performing team of professionals while setting and maintaining standards of performance.
  • Proven and verifiable leadership qualities with demonstrated ability to direct, coordinate and control all facets of a unique residential community club with numerous and diverse membership categories.
  • Excellent financial skills, with the ability to quickly assimilate numbers and reports. Knowledgeable regarding typical club financial issues and reporting.  Must be aware of critical benchmarking and financial metrics to be regularly measured against goals and objectives.
  • Exceptionally strong communication and facilitation skills, both written and verbal, with the desire and ability to interact effectively before diverse resident/member constituencies.
  • Experience in coordinating and overseeing major club, HOA residences, and community infrastructure repair, maintenance and capital improvement projects is highly desirable.
  • A strong negotiator capable of managing significant complex issues.
  • Is decisive, visionary, committed, energized and passionate.
  • Is capable of a high degree of self-motivation, resourcefulness and diplomacy.
A college graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree either in Business Administration, Hospitality Management or equivalent field with 10 years of progressive management experience in a similar, private, member-owned premier club; preferably in a bundled club/residential community.
Salary is open and commensurate with qualifications and experience.  Typical CMAA/CAI benefits and a competitive benefits & incentive package are offered.


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Lead Search Executive:
Armen Suny

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