Pebble Beach visits slow

Monday October 22, 2001

SAN FRANCISCO – Golfers used to have to call about a year in advance to secure a place on the green and a room at the resort at Pebble Beach during the peak fall months. 

But nowadays, tourists are getting away with a far shorter lead time. 

Renata Anderson and Stephen Rue of Walnut Creek decided to get in a round of golf and were able to get reservations on two days notice. 

The ordinarily healthy Pebble Beach is being hit hard by the recent downturn. Pebble Beach Co. laid off 170 workers this month — 10 percent of its work force. The cuts follow a drastic drop-off in tourist numbers after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. 

Even a month after the attacks, business is down 20 to 30 percent compared with the same period last year. Pebble Beach Co. is even running ads in San Francisco Bay area papers to remind people they have spaces open. 

Officials say this slump has so far been worse than the downturns following the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake and the 1991 Persian Gulf War.