Dominik Senn interview

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President & Founder Panther National
Posted on
March 4, 2024
by
M. James Ward in ,
Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

The Senn Story

Dominik Senn, born 1967 in Zurich, is a former professional alpine ski racer from Switzerland. Senn is the founder of 4SENN, 4sports & Entertainment AG, and Centaur Golf International AG—and acts as CEO and Chairman.

4sports is one of the world’s leading integrated sports marketing agencies and talent representation companies. Since 1995, Dominik Senn’s companies have represented world class athletes in Skiing, Tennis, Hockey, Soccer, and Golf. As a sports agent, Senn represents numerous PGA Tour golfers, among them are major champions and multiple PGA Tour winners.

Senn is notably the founder and president of Panther National, the first new private golf club to open in Palm Beach County in two decades.

Dominik Senn interview, Panther National, Palm Beach

Panther National

Officially opened November 17, 2023, Panther National is located approximately 5 five miles west of I-95 in Palm Beach Gardens. Situated on 2,400 acres it features an elastic first-time collaborative design between 18-time major winner Jack Nicklaus and two-time PGA Champion Justin Thomas. Panther National offers an array of resort-style amenities in concert with luxury real estate and is wonderfully secluded among a picturesque nature preserve.

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What was the genesis for Panther National?

My vision for Panther National was inspired by what I believe is a void in the luxury real estate and golf markets, both in Southern Florida and across the U.S.

I knew that there would be a strong desire for a revitalized, lifestyle-driven golf community and given the strong interest we have received thus far, I am confident we have delivered with Panther National.

Panther National, Palm Beach
#10 (Credit: Evan Schiller)

Given the plethora of clubs throughout much of southeast Florida - how will Panther National differentiate itself from those in the immediate area?

Panther National is the first golf community to be built in Palm Beach Country in over 20 years, so it appeals to an entirely new generation of buyers and members looking to invest in this lifestyle.

The golf course was designed in partnership with iconic golf champion Jack Nicklaus and current PGA TOUR star Justin Thomas, marking Thomas’ first and only course design.

They both have different perspectives that created a masterpiece. Jack sees the game through the air and favors bunkering that runs side to side. JT has a preference for the ground game and bump and runs. It was amazing to have two generations of golfers combined their best recommendations during the design of Panther National.

As for the actual course design, it is open and links-like with steep elevation changes, dramatic vistas, and includes features unlike any other course in Florida. It can also play 8,000 yards from the longest tees down to 4,500 yards, giving a rare diversity in length that allows the picturesque course to be a “major tournament” test for the expert golfer, while also presenting a very enjoyable course for members of all skill levels.

Lastly, we believe Panther National further differentiates itself by offering custom modern estates, designed by world-renowned architect Max Strang, and premium community amenities including The Clubhouse and Lifestyle Club for an unparalleled luxury experience.

 

Jack Nicklaus and Justin Thomas were chosen to co-design the 18-hole course. Were other architects interviewed and what was the tipping point for the two being selected?

Not only did I know that Jack Nicklaus could help me create a US Championship Course, but he was the guarantee that my vision for landforms on the golf course would come to fruition without becoming too complicated.

For our other partner, Jack supplied three names of current young players who he recommended, and when I interviewed Thomas, I could see the fire in his eyes. Ultimately, he became a consultant, co-designer, and investor.

Combining the best of Nicklaus’ traditional design style with the modern approach of Thomas and my unique perspective on landforms – from the viewpoint of a former professional alpine skier – Panther National’s championship course bridges the generational divide and offers an unmatched new golf experience.

 

Who is the prospective member for Panther National?

Our members all have the love of golf, endless sunshine, and outdoor pursuits in common, and we have seen interest from the Northeast tri-state area, Texas and Midwest markets.

Most of our members own a primary or secondary home in South Florida and visit the area frequently, especially if they are from areas where golf is not possible year-round. All members are friendly, social and looking to be a part of this dynamic community and healthy active lifestyle .

#5 (Credit: Evan Schiller)

What role will you play in the finalization of those applying for membership?

Beyond the standard application process for membership, I enjoy meeting and engaging in conversations with every potential member of Panther National. It is essential to ensure that we are constructing a community that aligns with our ethos, which fosters a vibrant culture among like-minded individuals who share a commitment to excellence.

Our goal has always been to create a welcoming home for the Panther National family that promotes a healthy lifestyle, and it's crucial that each new member holds these same values.

 

Are you considering hosting key events in the years ahead – whether professional or amateur - at Panther National?

South Florida loves an excuse for an event, and we will be hosting events of all types for members and owners in the coming months.

One that I can share is a weekend of festivities for our one-year anniversary in November 2024, and the invitation will be extended to golf professionals, owners and members alike.

We are also working with a few philanthropy partners and will collaborate on events to support key charities.

#15 (Credit: Evan Schiller)

High-end clubs tout the importance of member and guest services. What is the approach followed at Panther National and in what ways do you encourage feedback - whether by member or guest -- to happen?

I am dedicated to fostering a relaxed, yet elevated, atmosphere for our members, while upholding the highest standards in service and amenities.

Whether from a member or a guest, feedback is essential to ensuring we are meeting everyone’s needs and creating a community that everyone will enjoy. Since I am on the course daily, it’s second nature to have a pulse on the club's activities and I truly enjoy ensuring quality control for all.

 

If you could change one thing in golf unilaterally – what would it be and why?

The division amongst professional golfers and amateurs has been amplified substantially in the past 12 months. This can be attributed to a variety of factors including ongoing conflict between the PGA TOUR and LIV Golf that has divided players and fans alike.

Also, the governing bodies of golf have made their intentions known to roll back the golf ball in the coming years to combat distance. The club and weekend golfer will eventually feel the effects of both circumstances. Golfers, no matter their skill level, are all in this together, and this division should not be so stark.

As a golfer – what's the first thing you notice - positive and negative – when coming to a property?

Golf courses around the world all have individual attributes that make them special. For a development, there is so much more to consider beyond the links. For me personally, what I notice, is simply the people on the grounds of a property and how they are being taken care of.

A player’s experience often starts with their first greeting and ends with the last good-bye. At Panther National, one of our core values is treat others how you want to be treated, and we hope that this will create a positive experience for our members, homeowners and staff.

Dominik Senn interview, Panther National, Palm Beach
#14 (Credit: Evan Schiller)

Complete the sentence Dominik Senn is -

An entrepreneur, visionary, and golf enthusiast who is passionate about creating a reimagined luxury experience for club members, homeowners, and guests.

That’s the genesis of Panther National, and of Dominik Senn.

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For more info go to:

www.panthernational.com

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About M. James Ward

A GWAA and MGWA member, the 66-year-old from the USA has covered golf in all facets since 1980, notably the major championships and other high level events. He has played over 2,000 courses globally and has competed in USGA Championships.

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