Doral

Round of golf costly for 2 visitors who lost thousands in valuables to thieves at Trump’s new Doral resort

 
 
Donald Trump shows off his updated course by the hitting a ceremonial tee shot off the first tee at Trump Doral earlier this month.
Donald Trump shows off his updated course by the hitting a ceremonial tee shot off the first tee at Trump Doral earlier this month.
Miami Herald Staff / PATRICK FARRELL

crabin@MiamiHerald.com

When Donald Trump bought the Doral resort, the cost for a round of golf was expected to rise — but not by more than $7,000.

At least, that’s what gastroenterologist Lloyd King and his golfing pal healthcare executive Bradley Hill are saying, after filing a police report that they were ripped off of more than $1,000 in cash and $6,500 in jewelry during a visit to the resort last week.

It’s not the attention Trump and Doral executives had hoped for as they scramble to get The Donald’s latest masterpiece in tip-top shape before the golf world descends on Trump National Doral Miami the first week of March for the pro golf tour’s annual pilgrimage to South Florida.

Worse than the theft, said Hill, is that he, and King from Brentwood, Tenn., for four days, weren’t exactly treated like kings after informing Doral security of their ordeal.

“They didn’t have to comp me the entire trip, but at least comp me a round or something,” suggested Hill, who claims $600 was stolen from a money clip inside his golf bag.

Hill, 49, still managed to shoot a more-than-respectable 83 that day, finishing his round on the tough White Course despite discovering the theft on the third or fourth hole. King, 53, almost matched him with an 86.

“With all that was going on, I didn’t do too bad,” he said.

Doral Police Chief Richard Blom wondered why the men didn’t leave their valuables at the front desk when they checked in, especially with all the construction going on as workers race to touch up the courses and finish the clubhouse renovation in the next three weeks.

“I think I’d take advantage of the safe,” Blom said. “I don’t know what else the resort can do. I’m just questioning why people would be outraged.”

Cari Farinas, Doral’s marketing and public relations manager, said attorneys are looking into the incident and will contact Hill and King.

“It’s an unfortunate situation and we’re investigating it,” she said.

King and Hill and friends arrived at the Doral resort Thursday for a four-day trip, rooming in lodges that overlook the 18th green of Doral’s famed Blue Monster. They left for home Sunday.

Sometime between hitting the driving range and the fourth hole of the White Course on Thursday, King said he reached into his bag to get money to buy a beer when he noticed $500 missing from his wallet. His $2,500 wedding band and a $4,000 Rolex watch also were missing, he said.

Hill peeked into his bag and realized someone had taken $500 from a money clip. The men’s wallets were not stolen. Hill said he waved over a cart worker, who called security. The men told their story to Doral police.

The police reports — while noting resort officials offered to hold the men’s belongings — confirmed King and Hill’s account. The resort has no surveillance around the practice range area where the theft is believed to have occurred.

Everything Trump has done to the old Doral resort since the purchase — including the reshaping of the courses and a major clubhouse renovation — is geared toward the first week in March when Doral hosts a World Golf Championship, a major tour event with a stacked field of players from around the world.

Because of that, visitors to the resort have had to endure unpaved cart paths, cranes, workers and other construction obstacles. King said despite his frustration with the resort’s condition, it was the treatment he said he received from a general manager that made him mad.

“Though you may have intended to appear understanding, I came away from the few minutes of your time that you gave me thinking you thought I was trying to scam you,” King wrote to Vice President and Managing Director David Feder.

When King returned home Sunday, a standard email from Feder thanking him for the visit and asking King to fill out a survey was waiting in his email box.

“You can guess how I filled it out,” King said.

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