In late 1976, as the Eastdale Mall was nearing completion in suburban Montgomery, downtown Montgomery retail stores began to relocate their operations to the new, more convenient location. The location provided one-stop shopping for Montgomery, thus creating too much competition for downtown shopping to survive. The Eastdale Mall changed the paradigm of old Montgomery completely, causing a drastic need for the revitalization of downtown, the once epicenter of Montgomery.
During this transition, Aaron Aronov, a Montgomery realtor and developer, was charged with revitalizing the downtown Pizitz Department Store into a prime office location. Because of his relationship with the Relay House Club in Birmingham, Aronov was familiar with Club Corporation of America, the Relay House Club’s parent company. Aronov contacted Club Corporation of America in early 1977 to conceptualize his idea of transitioning downtown Montgomery from a retail center to a viable business and social center. It was his perception that a fine private club could provide the cornerstone in an effort to revitalize not only the Pizitz Department Store, but also downtown.
In an effort to save downtown, other business and community leaders such as Winton “Red” Blount, Bobby Weil, Tommy Tyson and Philip Sellers added their support to the Aronov’s concept of a fine private club and established the Founding Board of Governors. In May 1977, the Club was conceived and named Capital City Club. Because of the prestige and influence of the founding Board of Governors, and with their enthusiasm, support and effort, the community responded in droves.
The board desired to develop the Club’s membership through an invitation process that included sponsorship by at least two founding board members prior to being submitted to the Club’s admissions committee. The admissions committee was formed to ensure a compatible membership made up of business, political and community leaders with proper regard to race, creed and nationality. The founding board members wanted a membership diverse in composition and representative of Montgomery’s corporate, political, cultural and academic leaders. This, in itself, was unique to Montgomery.
In December 1977, Capital City Club was completed and opened with a party the likes of which Montgomery had never seen. The board’s efforts generated an opening membership in excess of 900 Members committed to the continued support and growth of downtown.
In 1994, as the RSA Tower was being conceptualized, the Board of Governors saw an opportunity to move the Club’s quarters to, what was soon to be, Montgomery’s most prestigious location. Through the efforts of the board, the Retirement Systems of Alabama, and Club Corporation of America, the now parent company of Capital City Club, a move was effected in April 1997 to the current location in conjunction with the Club’s 20th anniversary.
Currently the Club’s membership is in excess of 2,000 Members who have contributed to the success of their Club and their community. As the Club’s membership has grown, so have the Member benefits, events and facilities. In conjunction with the Club’s founding, membership remains by invitation only and is still subject to approval of the Club’s admissions committee. This privilege allows Members, and the Members only, to sponsor friends and associates to membership.
Capital City Club has established and continues to support the tradition of a fine private club. These traditions will continue to grow as the Club continues to support the community interests of its Members and provide a Club that is alive, active and quality-oriented.