view from the top

Your Downtown Update: What's all that construction?

Sarasota certainly has not been idle in the months our seasonal visitors have been away. Let’s take a quick look at what you might have missed while you were gone.

While You were Gone…

A suite at Sarasota Modern

A suite at Sarasota Modern

…These projects have neared completion:

These long-awaited new construction projects are nearing completion, bringing a lot more options for renters and visitors!

  • Embassy Suites Hotel - 202 N. Tamiami Tr. Central Downtown

  • Arcos Apartments - 320 Central Ave. Rosemary District

  • Elan Rosemary Apartments - 710 N. Lemon Ave. Rosemary District

  • Sarasota Modern Hotel -1242 Blvd. of the Arts Rosemary District

A rendering of Courtyard at Citrus

A rendering of Courtyard at Citrus

…These buildings have begun construction:

A multitude of living options await us in the coming months! For the purposes of location, we’ve let you know what niche of downtown each of these are located.

  • Artisan on Main - 62. N. School Ave. East Downtown

  • The Boulevard (BLVD) - 500 N. Tamiami Tr. Central Downtown

  • Bold Lofts - 2nd St. Central Downtown

  • Courtyard at Citrus - 461 N. Orange Ave. Rosemary District

  • The Enclave at Laurel Park - 1425 Main St. Laurel Park

  • Laurel Townhomes - on Hudson Bayou Laurel Park

  • The Pearl - 609 Golden Gate Pt Golden Gate Point

  • 7 One One Palm - 711 S. Palm Ave. Palm Avenue Waterfront

  • The Ritz Carlton Residences - 1111 Ritz Carlton Ave. Bayfront North

  • The Mark - 100 S. Washington Central Downtown

…And these have stayed in or begun the development process:

Many of these have been a subject of our blogs (and conversation!) for months, but the shovel is not yet in the ground.

  • The Collection - 1335 2nd St. Rosemary District

  • TBA, 5-story condo - 1469 5th St. Rosemary District

  • 332 Cocoanut - 332 Cocoanut Ave. Rosemary District

  • TBA, condos - 680 Golden Gate Point Golden Gate Point

  • Courtyard at Citrus, phases 2 and 3 - 461 N. Orange Ave. Rosemary District

Rendering of The Strand

Rendering of The Strand

  • The Demarcay - 27. S. Palm Ave. Palm Avenue Waterfront

  • Epoch - 53 S. Palm Ave. Palm Avenue

  • Evolution - TBD Golden Gate Point

  • Quay Sarasota - North Bayfront

  • Payne Park Village - East Downtown

  • The Risdon - Rosemary District

A rendering of Zahrada

A rendering of Zahrada

  • The Strand - North Downtown

  • Vanguard Lofts - 1343 4th Street Rosemary District

  • Zahrada - TBD 4th Street Rosemary District

A rendering of DeMarcay

A rendering of DeMarcay

Is all the new construction a good or bad thing? Only time will tell. From a real estate perspective, the sheer volume of new options in the downtown area have begun to impact our current market, which has shifted to a buyer’s market slowly over the past few months. The influx of additional options in downtown housing started as a correction to many years of downright snail’s pace development in our area post-recession. As Sarasota grew in popularity over the last decade, construction didn’t really pick back up until 5-6 years in, so we did have some making up to do. We will have to wait and see how the changing skyline of our city impacts of overall market in the coming months and years.

Sculpture Parks Here & There

Sculpture parks from around the world were recently featured on Christie’s International Real Estate Luxury Defined blog. Take a look at 7 they believe you can’t miss, and one of our own special parks right in downtown Sarasota!


OPEN-AIR ART: 7 MUST-VISIT SCULPTURE PARKS

From giant roosters, deer, and hares, to mysterious shifting fog installations, some of the most exciting works of art are sited outside the traditional confines of a gallery in sculpture parks, giving visitors a whole new perspective on the pieces themselves and the landscapes they dominate—all while enjoying the fresh air and beautiful open spaces. Here are seven to put on your outdoor-art agenda.

1. Yorkshire Sculpture Park
West Yorkshire, UK

A huge reclining hare, an army of imposing tribal figures, and a tree made of iron are just three of the sights that await visitors at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2017. The brainchild of founding director Peter Murray CBE, the park covers 500 acres (202 ha). Works by Henry Moore, Andy Goldsworthy, David Nash, and James Turrell are scattered around the grounds (as well as that Sophie Ryder hare, Zak Ové’s figures, and Ai Weiwei’s tree). “Viewing sculpture in the garden can provide a very different experience to an indoor gallery,” says Murray. “The changing light, the seasonal variations, and the elements all contribute to the experience.”

The 16-foot-tall (4.9 m)  Caldera , by leading British sculptor Tony Cragg, at Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The venue’s indoor gallery recently hosted the biggest UK exhibition of his work to date. Tony Cragg,  Caldera , 2008. Bronze, 480 x 372 x 342cm. Courtesy the artist and Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Photograph: Michael Richter.

The 16-foot-tall (4.9 m) Caldera, by leading British sculptor Tony Cragg, at Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The venue’s indoor gallery recently hosted the biggest UK exhibition of his work to date. Tony Cragg, Caldera, 2008. Bronze, 480 x 372 x 342cm. Courtesy the artist and Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Photograph: Michael Richter.

This is also the only place where you can see Barbara Hepworth’s The Family of Man in its entirety. “Sited on the hillside, the work takes on the majesty of the trees as it absorbs the Yorkshire landscape, which had such a strong influence on Hepworth,” observes Murray.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park is the only place you can view Barbara Hepworth’s  The Family of Man , 1970 in its full form. © Bowness. Courtesy Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Photograph: Jonty Wilde.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park is the only place you can view Barbara Hepworth’s The Family of Man, 1970 in its full form. © Bowness. Courtesy Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Photograph: Jonty Wilde.

2.Minneapolis Sculpture Garden
Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
If you were in London between July 2013 and February 2015, you might have noticed a huge blue rooster surveying Trafalgar Square. That particular bird—Katharina Fritsch’s Hahn/Cock—can now be found in the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, but you can view its identical sibling (the work is an edition of two) at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, part of the Walker Art Gallery. The garden reopened in 2017 following a $10 million renovation and is home to works including Spoonbridge and Cherry by Claes Oldenburg and his wife, Coosje van Bruggen.

Claes Oldenberg and Coosje van Bruggen’s  Spoonbridge and Cherry  (1988) takes pride of place in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Photograph courtesy the Oldenburg van Bruggen Studio. Copyright 1988 Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen.

Claes Oldenberg and Coosje van Bruggen’s Spoonbridge and Cherry (1988) takes pride of place in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Photograph courtesy the Oldenburg van Bruggen Studio. Copyright 1988 Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen.

3. Storm King Art Center
Cornwall, New York, USA
Just over an hour’s drive from Manhattan, Storm King Art Center was founded in 1960 by Ralph E Ogden and H Peter Stern. Originally a home for the works of the Hudson River School for painters, the park now spans 500 contiguous acres of wildlife-packed fields, former allées, woodlands, wetlands, and streams. More than 100 sculptures are dotted around the landscape, among them the futuristic, bright-red Iliad by Alexander Liberman, complete with its impossibly balanced cantilevered elements, and the rotatingFrog Legs by abstract expressionist Mark di Suvero. Storm King is currently staging two temporary exhibitions:Outlooks, a site-specific installation by Elaine Cameron-Weir, and Indicators: Artists on Climate Change, for which more than a dozen artists explore the impact of global warming through specially made sculpture, photography, and film.

Frog Legs  by Mark di Suvero (2002) at the Storm King Art Center rotates 360 degrees in order to give ever-changing views of the sky and surrounding landscape. Lent by the artist and Spacetime C.C., New York. Photograph: Jerry L Thompson.

Frog Legs by Mark di Suvero (2002) at the Storm King Art Center rotates 360 degrees in order to give ever-changing views of the sky and surrounding landscape. Lent by the artist and Spacetime C.C., New York. Photograph: Jerry L Thompson.

4. National Gallery of Australia
Canberra, Australia
Not all sculptures need to be solid, as the National Gallery of Australia’s (NGA) Sculpture Garden demonstrates every day between 12:30pm and 2pm. As the name suggests, Fog Sculpture, by Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya, envelops the garden in a mist that settles over its pond and pathways, shifting and moving with the wind. “The work is really intriguing because it acts very differently at different times of the year,” says Lucina Ward, senior curator, international painting and sculpture at NGA. “In foggy winters, the mist seems to continue onto the lake. On a hot summer’s day, meanwhile, it’s delightful to sit on a bench and have the vapor float onto your skin.” Also on display at the NGA isHeads from the North, by Dadang Christanto, a haunting work comprising 66 bronze heads staring out from the surface of a pond, and a life-sized model of Antony Gormley’s The Angel of the North.

Fujiko Nakaya’s  Foggy Wake in a Desert: An Ecosphere  (1982) uses natural elements to create a living sculpture. Water vapor, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra. Purchased 1977. © Fujiko Nakaya.

Fujiko Nakaya’s Foggy Wake in a Desert: An Ecosphere (1982) uses natural elements to create a living sculpture. Water vapor, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra. Purchased 1977. © Fujiko Nakaya.

5. Laumeier Sculpture Park
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA
In 1968, Matilda C Laumeier bequeathed 72 acres of land to what would become Laumeier Sculpture Park. Today, it encompasses 105 acres, and is home to work from artists including Donald Judd, Jenny Holzer, and Tony Tasset, whoseDeer is a pensive and nervous—yet supersized—fawn ready to make her move. “I see the Laumeier as an intellectual playground,” says curator Dana Turkovic. “Artists use it as a platform, to add new voices to the conversation about public art in nature.” Laumeier also has an indoor gallery space, the Adam Aronson Fine Arts Center, which this fall will showcase the work of David Hutson.

Tony Tasset’s  Eye  stares intently back at visitors to Laumeier Sculpture Park in Saint Louis. Photograph: Alamy.

Tony Tasset’s Eye stares intently back at visitors to Laumeier Sculpture Park in Saint Louis. Photograph: Alamy.

6.Domaine du Muy
Le Muy, France
Jean-Gabriel Mitterrand knows a thing or two about sculpture: for almost 30 years he has staged exhibitions—and sold many works—at JGM Galerie (later renamed Galerie Mitterrand) in Paris’s hip Marais neighborhood. In 2015, Mitterrand and his son, Edward, opened a viewing space of a very different kind: one with no walls, and forests of pine and cork oaks as a dramatic backdrop. Situated 15 miles (24.1 km) inland between Nice and Marseilles, Domaine du Muy opened with an art trail of 40 pieces by contemporary artists spread across 25 acres (10.1 ha), curated in collaboration with Simon Lamunière, the brains behind Art Basel’s Art Unlimited section. The trail has been expanded even further for 2018, but pieces by resident artists Roman Signer and Claudia Comte remain.

Claude Lalanne’s oversized bronze apple,  Pomme de New York  at Domaine du Muy in the South of France. © Claude Lalanne. Courtesy Domaine du Muy. Photograph: JC Lett.

Claude Lalanne’s oversized bronze apple, Pomme de New York at Domaine du Muy in the South of France. © Claude Lalanne. Courtesy Domaine du Muy. Photograph: JC Lett.

7. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
Copenhagen, Denmark
Knud W Jensen loved art and culture. He also held other people’s love of it in high esteem, which led to him founding in 1958 what would become the most-visited art museum in Denmark. Today, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art houses an extensive collection of works dating from the Second World War to the present day, in a series of modernist buildings and outdoor areas.

The stainless-steel and two-way-mirror glass piece,  Square Bisected by Curve  by New York-based artist Dan Graham, is on display at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. Photograph: Kim Hansen. Credit: Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

The stainless-steel and two-way-mirror glass piece, Square Bisected by Curve by New York-based artist Dan Graham, is on display at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. Photograph: Kim Hansen. Credit: Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

Its adjoining Sculpture Park is modeled on an English landscape garden and cannot be viewed in its entirety from any one vantage point. “Louisiana should make itself known as a place for sculpture,” said Jensen, in his book Mit Loisiana-liv (My Louisiana Life). Standout works includeTwo Piece Reclining Figure No 5by Henry Moore, The Gate in the Gorge by American sculptor Richard Serra, and House to Watch the Sunset by American-Swiss sculptor Not Vital.


We’ll go ahead and add #8 ;-)

Sarasota Bayfront, Sarasota, Florida, USA

Our own bayfront area in downtown Sarasota has a wealth of sculptural and art appeal, including its annual Embracing Our Differences exhibit, which is billboard-sized expressions of creativity from people of all ages. In addition to this special exhibit on display during the winter, the bayfront has world-renown Unconditional Surrender (center) statue, and several smaller sculptures scattered all around, many of which are by Sarasota local artists.

This year’s Embracing Our Differences display is calling for art very soon! To find out more about how to submit entries to be a part of this large outdoor exhibit, visit their webpage here.

  • Deadline to submit art: October 15, 2018

  • This year’s exhibit is open: January 19 to March 15, 2019

Just Listed: Burns Court Villas

563 S Palm Ave Unit 21-005-10-chp team 05-MLS_Size.jpg

Just Listed!

563 Palm Avenue, Sarasota

We just listed a beautiful and impeccably maintained townhome in exclusive Burns Court Villas. The small community is made up of just 23 residences surrounding a peaceful courtyard and community pool, right in the heart of Burns Court in Downtown Sarasota.

Burns Court Villas.  Just imagine...

Imagine living in the center of downtown Sarasota and also enjoying the tranquility of hidden gardens that feel like a private oasis…this stunning residence at Burns Court Villas presents a unique opportunity to both! Located in historic & artsy Burns Court, this townhome is ideally situated on a prime corner with many windows for lots of light, and also features direct entry from Palm Avenue for easy coming and going, plus supreme walkability to all of downtown.

Screen Shot 2018-09-04 at 11.14.04 AM.png

563 S. Palm AvENUE

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 2.5 bathrooms
  • 2,124 sq' under air + 300 sq' of balcony & courtyard exterior space
  • Listed for $925,000

Inside you will find finishes that impress, including elegant travertine, gleaming rich wood, sparkling granite, and chef-worthy Viking appliances. Your private elevator will whisk you up to three spacious bedrooms, two of which enjoy access to airy balconies. You’ll also love the spacious master closet, recently fully customized with perfect built-ins, and the pretty view from your master suite, encompassing the entire third floor.

Back on the ground, meander outside to your private and secluded patio - a rarity downtown! - for an afternoon nap or to grill dinner. You will feel right at home in this gorgeous property and there is nothing to do but relax and start enjoying your downtown lifestyle.

Now your only concern will be whether to exit through the front door to visit the nearby boutiques and galleries, or leave via the back to lounge in the lush courtyard. It is all up to you! 

Community Amenities

The jaw-dropping verdant grounds provide a peaceful respite for Burns Court Villas residents.

The jaw-dropping verdant grounds provide a peaceful respite for Burns Court Villas residents.

A community pool & spa are located in the center of the small community, completely isolated from the outside world of the city.

A community pool & spa are located in the center of the small community, completely isolated from the outside world of the city.

The garden courtyard is complete with beautiful statues and pergolas set in the scenic space.

The garden courtyard is complete with beautiful statues and pergolas set in the scenic space.

If you would like more information about this special and rare villa in Burns Court, please visit the property page or give me a call today!

A View from the Garden

People love their penthouses, but let's face it, the View from the Top isn't for everyone!  People who desire seeing more green than cityscape or those who want a more spacious feel over height might choose to live in a lower-level residence.  Let's check out some cool garden- and courtyard-view condos in Downtown Sarasota, where there are stunning views of more than just the water!  

(Some of these are not actively for sale at this time but we couldn't resist sharing them with you anyway!)


1000 SF of Terrace in Orange Blossom Tower

What a unique find!  At Orange Blossom Tower, which resides right next to 1350 Main in the heart of downtown and where each residence encompasses an entire floor, there is one extra-special condo on the 3rd floor, which includes a whopping 1000+ sq'  of outdoor space on two separate terraces.  This is a case of lower floor = more space!  With nearly 4,000 sq' of interior space, plus fireplace (inside) and fire pit (outside), there is truly no end to entertaining options in a home like this.  

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 3 bathrooms
  • 3,954 sq ft under air
  • 4,936 total sq ft including exterior space
  • Sold for $1,599,000 in 2015
 

Private Open-Air Terrace in Sansara

Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 2.46.31 PM.png

Who says the top has more fun?  This 2nd-level condo in luxurious Sansara has one thing those higher floors do not: a stunning open-air terrace, which gives you the feel of pushing back the pocketing sliders right out to your backyard!  Nearly 2,800 sq ft of living space open up wide to the nearly 2,500 sq ft of terrace, complete with gas grill, fire pit, and covered pergola seating area.  All we can say is "Wow!"

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 3 bathrooms
  • 2,794 sq ft under air
  • 5,379 total sq ft including exterior space
  • Sold for $2,249,900 in 2017
 

Endless Green in Burns Court Villas

Looking for lush and fragrant grounds to greet you every day?  Look no further than Burns Court Villas, a private enclave of 23 townhomes which share stunningly landscaped space and a warm, Mediterranean aesthetic.  All of the villas have cozy courtyards, but we love the whimsy vibe of this 2,000 sq ft townhome with a large wrap-around terrace.

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 2.5 bathrooms
  • 2,013 sq ft under air
  • 2,483 total sq ft including exterior space
  • Sold for $995,000 in 2017
 

Sweet Solitude in Library Mews

How do you get the feel of a spacious single family home in the center of downtown?  Library Mews, that's how.  The rarely-available, 11-unit townhome complex is situated on Cocoanut north of Main St, and despite its ultra-urban location, it has the excluded aura of sweet solitude.  This 1,490 sq ft townhome boasts nearly 700 sq ft of exterior living space, including a terrace and a rooftop patio.  

  • 2 bedrooms
  • 2.5 bathrooms
  • 1,490 sq ft under air
  • 2,141 total sq ft including exterior space
  • Currently listed for $649,000 (click to view listing here.)
 

Four Stories of Fun in Marquee En Ville

Things we love about Marquee En Ville: 

  1. The space.  Every townhome is over 2,200 sq ft.
  2. The 4th floor.  Paradise is the open-air covered patio with outdoor kitchen overlooking the city.
  3. The price point. These adorable townhomes have yet to hit the $1 million-dollar price point, and in fact, none have sold for more than $800K in the past 5 years!
  4. The location.  You can see the front of it from Fruitville so it's easy to tell your friends how to get there, and you are only minutes on foot from the opera, restaurants, Whole Foods, and more!
  5. There are actually 2 on the market right now!  
2 bedrooms | 3.5 bathrooms | 2,290 sq ft  3,050 sq ft total including exterior space  Currently listed for $659,000!    (click to view listing.)

2 bedrooms | 3.5 bathrooms | 2,290 sq ft

3,050 sq ft total including exterior space

Currently listed for $659,000!

(click to view listing.)

2 bedrooms | 3.5 bathrooms | 2,320 sq ft  3,000 sq ft including exterior space  Currently listed for $775,000!    (click to view listing.)

2 bedrooms | 3.5 bathrooms | 2,320 sq ft

3,000 sq ft including exterior space

Currently listed for $775,000!

(click to view listing.)

There are a wide variety of options in Downtown Sarasota, from buildings ideal for boaters to ritzy high-rises to garden townhomes.  I can help you whatever your lifestyle desires may be. :-)

Just Listed: 1.5-acres of Bayfront Paradise

3246 Old Oak Drive

Wow!  We are fortunate to announce that we've just listed an amazing, last-of-its-kind property: a gorgeously treed bayfront lot of beautiful untouched Florida paradise.  Located just off of Osprey south of downtown, 3246 Old Oak Drive is a simple massive west-of-trail lot on the mainland-side of the north bridge to Siesta Key within downtown city limits.  You simply do not find land like this these days!

Welcome to Le Rêve

  • 1.5 acre lot
  • 198 linear feet of water frontage on Sarasota Bay
  • West of trail & within city limits
  • Listed for $1,950,000

Are you ready to build your dream?  Pulling before the gates of Le Rêve, you will be greeted by welcoming landscaping and enough space for the most luxurious of private estates.

A walk behind these gates takes your to your own personal escape, right on the waters of Sarasota Bay.

A walk behind these gates takes your to your own personal escape, right on the waters of Sarasota Bay.

Welcome to Le Rêve, a tropical bayfront paradise in Sarasota, Florida. With nearly 200’ of frontage on Sarasota Bay, this beautiful property offers you a look into what Florida can be… a lush & verdant escape of canopied oaks, towering palms, and peaceful seclusion unheard of in the highly sought-after West of Trail area. Winding down the quiet street, you will be in awe of a neighborhood that has put nature first; the homes work around the scenery in a graceful, subtle dance, allowing the trees to lead the way.

Your west-facing home will look out onto some of the best sunsets in the world…a red globe dipping into the warm waters of glistening Sarasota Bay.

Listed price is for 1.5 acres of this 2.25-acre parcel—create your fantasy residence or choose to purchase the entirety for the ultimate bayfront escape. Located within minutes of Siesta Key, Southside Village, prestigious Southside Elementary School, and all of the cultural amenities of downtown Sarasota, this untouched property is the last of its kind.

Take a peek from the sky...

Places like this come about once in a lifetime; lucky for you, it’s now. Build your home, build your future, build your dream at Le Rêve.  If you would like more information about this property or any other in Sarasota, please give me a call today!

Bayfront 20:20 Update

Screen Shot 2018-05-23 at 12.57.36 PM.png

The team from Sasaki Design Firm was back this week to present additional renderings of the future site, called The Bay Sarasota, what they hope will be a big destination and gathering area for our community.  If you're not up to speed on this exciting project, check out our blog on it.  

What Sarasota Wants

Original  Bridge the Divide  concept

Original Bridge the Divide concept

After the feedback received from the last public forum and surveying our community, a dynamic design proposal was "selected" out of three.  That's in quotes because while this was the highest-ranked proposed design, the firm based all their surveying on ASPECTS of each design, so they could incorporate individual items to suit our community's wants and needs.  The firm adjusted their newest renderings of Bridge the Divide, the selected "winning design," based on the feedback that our community cares about:

  • Public access to the waterfront
  • Connectivity with the rest of downtown across Tamiami Trail
  • Providing the community with a balance of diversified activities
  • Preserving the existing Van Wezel structure

The South End

The questions, concerns, and feedback of Sarasota residents mainly affected the northern section.  Consequently, the south end of The Bay is pretty much set, said the design firm.  The design includes some exciting features!

  • Destination play area
  • Kayak launch
  • Recreation pier
  • Pedestrian bridges across 41
  • Picturesque waterfront drive

The southern portion of The Bay will also offer parking under landscaping, opening up the view to more green space and hiding the unsightly cars, as well as offer builders "simplified phasing" -- current buildings will be able to stay in use as development continues to the north.

The North End: Up for Discussion

A key feature of the original Bridge the Divide concept was a performing arts structure that spanned both sides of a waterway.  In their redesigns, this is depicted in two different ways:

Option 1: The Bridge

Screen Shot 2018-05-23 at 12.45.27 PM.png
  • Performing arts building bridges over the canal
  • Restaurants on south side of canal
  • Boat ramp on north side of canal
  • Event lawn
  • Small amphitheater near existing Van Wezel site

Option 2: Canal District

Screen Shot 2018-05-23 at 12.45.34 PM.png
  • More waterfront dining than The Bridge
  • Walkable setting
  • Boat ramp moved to the north
  • Frame of performing arts building spans the canal, provides a scenic overlook & a pier
  • Large shaded amphitheater

Both feature a boat ramp, performing arts areas of various type (lawn space, amphitheater, and indoor halls), and parking under the landscape.

Your Input is Needed!

Again, Sasaki is offering Sarasotans the chance to chime in on what they want out of The Bay.  To offer your opinion, please take their survey here.  To find out more about The Bay, have a look at their website.

Ultra-Luxe & On the Market

It is no wonder that Sarasota's crystal clear waters, exceptional access to the arts, and thriving economy continues to draw in the world's ultra-rich.  New buildings sprouting up downtown have starting price points in the low millions, providing the wealthy with a multitude of high-end and exclusive options, but for those desiring palatial square footage, gulf- or bay- frontage, and privacy, there are mansions galore to answer the call.  Let's have a look at some waterfront mansions that are new to the market.

Mainland

2211 Alameda Avenue, Sarasota 34234

  • 5 bedrooms
  • 5.5 bathrooms
  • 6,822 square feet under air
  • Days on Market: 52
  • Offered at $6,250,000

This Mediterranean mansion, built in 2010, is on the market for the first time.  What does $6 million buy you on the Sarasota mainland?  1.6 acres of oak-canopied bay front land and nearly 7,000 square feet on luxury in two structures, a main home and a guest casita.  Conveniently situated between downtown and the Ringling museum in the waterfront neighborhood Bay Park, this home has an electric dock & lift right on Sarasota Bay.

Bird Key

614 S OWL DRIVE, SARASOTA 34236

  • 5 bedrooms
  • 6.5 bathrooms
  • 7,200 square feet under air
  • Days on Market: 49
  • Offered at $5,400,000

Located on a premium lot on Bird Key, this west-facing house gets the gorgeous sunsets that Sarasota is known for, visible from the large 50' bay front pool.  Bird Key in general is boater's paradise, with many waterfront homes and a lot of options for boat dockage, including the Key's Yacht Club or personal docks on all the waterfront homes, but this lot specifically is located on some of the deepest water, with zero bridges to the Gulf of Mexico.  The lush lot frames an absolutely elegant waterfront mansion, with 5 en-suite bedrooms, a gourmet kitchen, and positively palatial ceiling height and footprint.

Longboat Key

25 LIGHTHOUSE POINT DRIVE, LONGBOAT KEY 34228

  • 4 bedrooms
  • 6.5 bathrooms
  • 6,025 square feet under air
  • Days on Market: 56
  • Offered at $5,500,000

Located behind the gates of exclusive Lighthouse Point, this home is at the southern tip of Longboat Key, meaning all the benefits of island living, just over the John Ringling Bridge from St. Armands Circle and 10 minutes from downtown.  Situated on a quiet and peaceful lagoon just minutes from big water, this prime lot offers boat dockage and fishing pier for outdoorsmen and boaters' pleasure.  6,000 square feet of exquisite Mediterranean details await the new owner, who will relish in the master wing, a personal retreat complete with fireplace, walk-in closets, wet bar, and patio access with water views.

Siesta Key

3799 FLAMINGO AVENUE, SARASOTA 34242

  • 4 bedrooms
  • 4 full and 2 half-bathrooms
  • 8,138 square feet under air
  • Days on Market: 72
  • Offered at a cool $15,000,000

Located on Roberts Bay right over the bridge on north Siesta Key is $15 million worth of contemporary opulence.  Garage space for more than 10 cars, boat dock with lift, paddle-board launch, tackle room and sports storage will please any outdoorsman, and the utter extravagance of the interior will appease any homeowner or guest that is lucky enough to stay at this modern waterfront chateau.  The pictures speak for themselves; this truly is an unmatched island paradise.  If a life of luxury is what you desire, world-renown Siesta Key provides in spades. 

Casey Key

1232 CASEY KEY ROAD, OSPREY 34229

  • 4 bedrooms
  • 5.5 bathrooms
  • 8,121 square feet under air
  • Days on Market: 90
  • Offered at $6,895,000

Casey Key's unique Gulf-to-Bay properties span the width of the key, offering its residents their own bayfront private beach, as well as frontage on the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico.  This sprawling estate is privately gated and lushly landscaped, greeting visitors with a secluded paradise that few are able to behold.  The grand foyer of this home opens to an elegant interior, with high-end finishes, such as the beautiful tray ceilings in every room, and exits to a breathtaking exterior living space.

Sarasota offers homes for all price ranges, and is for the modest first-time homeowner AND the retired former exec.  If you need assistance finding your perfect piece of paradise in Sarasota, please give me a call today.

Downtown Expansion Continues

Another day, another new downtown development!  We know recently we have filled you in on a LOT of new downtown high-rises, including the new Ritz Carlton Residences, Epoch, Blvd & 7-One-One Palm, but today we have even more!

The Mark

Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 1.53.39 PM.png

This one has been hard to miss if you traverse Ringling Blvd in the downtown area: it's the one that looks like it's mimicking the Iron building in NYC from the west, right by Towles Court.  From the front, however, it will be a downtown destination all its own, known as The Promenade, an assortment of retail and restaurant space.  And above The Promenade, 157 comtemporary condo residences in the heart of downtown.  Let's get the details...

  • 157 contemporary condominiums
  • 39 floorplans
  • 1,354 to 2,969 square feet
  • 10' or 11' ceilings
  • Private access-controlled elevators for exclusive resident use
  • Priced from the mid-$700,000

Amenities

  • 5th-level resort-style pool and spa, with surrounding entertainment area, fire pit, lounge seating, and outdoor cooking
  • Club Room with catering kitchen
  • News Room with daily coffee/beverage offerings, seating, and TVs
  • Resident Board Room
  • High-tech fitness center
  • Common area Wi-Fi
  • Private storage areas
  • 24/7 secured access at all entry and exit points
  • 24/7 staffed, secured lobby
  • On-site property management

If the aesthetic of this one looks familiar to you, you're right!  Developer Kolter just added VUE to the waterfront side of downtown, and is also in charge of new Ritz Carlton Residences!  

The Collection

Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 1.57.58 PM.png

Hot off the press!  This one is so new we couldn't even really find a website for it yet.  Slated to be located on Second Street in the ever-growing Rosemary District, The Collection looks to be a very architecturally-forward design.  Here is the scoop:

  • 12 very private, exclusive residences
  • 2,500 to 3,500 square feet
  • Up to full-floor size
  • 12' to 14' ceilings
  • High-end finishes
  • 2-car garage for each residence
  • Priced from $1,399,000

Amenities

  • Concierge
  • Pool
  • Spa
  • Yoga
  • Fitness room
  • Sauna
  • Corporate center/Meeting room
  • Resident entertainment area with fireplace and wet bar
  • Heated and air conditioned private storage area
  • Dog run

There are no interior renderings of this brand-new development so unfortunately we have only the sleek exterior from which to paint the picture.  One thing is for certain: by the same developer as downtown's beautiful Sansara, The Collection will be another chic and luxurious addition to the northern Downtown skyline.  Far more details to come on this one; stay tuned!

As always, for any and all downtown Sarasota real estate needs, we are here to help!  

The Newest in Downtown Luxury

Ritz Carlton Residences

Located at Quay Sarasota

00 - Exterior Rendering.JPG

The long-vacant land located at Quay Sarasota, just north of Fruitville and Tamiami Trail, has been a desirable and yet a disputed piece of land for many years.  Finally, a winner has been chosen for the highly-sought-after property: it will become home to the newest Ritz Carlton Residences.  With construction beginning this year, the 18-story, 73-residence building will remain with the level of luxury to which the Ritz Carlton family is accustomed, but with a clean, modern feel. 

The view from penthouse-level in the new Ritz Carlton Residences.

The view from penthouse-level in the new Ritz Carlton Residences.

The Kolter Group, who just finished VUE on Gulfstream Avenue, is piloting this project and carrying forward the panoramic-view theme with a Ritz-Carlton flavored cherry on top.  One of the most beloved features of VUE that will carry into this design as well is its floor-to-ceiling windows and sliders throughout the living space, as well as the city-to-water views in every residence.  The new Residences will also feature soaring 11 and 12' ceilings and multiple terraces in each condo.

The Ritz: Not Just a Building; A Lifestyle

  • 18 floors
  • 73 luxury condominiums
  • 3,100 to 6,200 square feet
  • East-to-west & city-to-water views
  • Private elevators to each residence
  • Separate service entrance & elevator
  • Climate controlled storage
  • Access-controlled parking, with two assigned, covered spaces per condo

Welcome to the Ritz family, which, in Sarasota, brings you access to:

  • The Beach Club on Lido Key
  • The Ritz Carlton Golf Club
  • The Spa Resort & Day Spa
  • Fine Dining at Quay & Jack Dusty

Enviable Amenities

  • Two bayfront pools: an oasis pool for utter relations, and a 70' long lap/fitness pool, and a separate spa
  • Boardwalk on the waterfront in the new Quay Shopping District, which will feature shopping, dining, boating access, and a public park
  • Members-only dog park
  • Private clubrooms
  • Fitness center
  • On-site property management
  • 24-hour valet and concierge service

We are always on top of the next big thing downtown.

If you are interested in learning more about the new Ritz Carlton Residences, please give us a call today.  Don't forget, we are your go-to for everything downtown, from the character-filled established buildings to the next best View from the Top!  

Homes for the Sporting Life

Our partners at Christie's International Real Estate recently highlighted Homes for the Sporting Life.  Here in Sarasota, the outdoor life is attainable in most any home, thanks to our year-round ability to be outside, but there are some neighborhoods where outdoor lifestyles were the muse of entire developments!  Have a look at Christie's best homes for the sporting life, and a few of our own, right here in SRQ!

Christie's Pick's for Sporting Homes

DEL DIOS RANCH

RANCHO SANTE FE, CALIFORNIA

$28,000,000

Sports enthusiasts of many stripes will appreciate the professional tennis court, premier equestrian facilities, and magnificent indoor pool and spa offered at the 61.24-acre  Del Dios Ranch , one of the largest available tracts in coveted Rancho Santa Fe, California.

Sports enthusiasts of many stripes will appreciate the professional tennis court, premier equestrian facilities, and magnificent indoor pool and spa offered at the 61.24-acre Del Dios Ranch, one of the largest available tracts in coveted Rancho Santa Fe, California.

LA DOLCE VITA

NEWPORT, NEW SOUTH WALES, AUSTRALIA

PRICE UPON REQUEST.

Nestled within a desired and sheltered location in Newport, Australia,  La Dolce Vita  has exceptional amenities for aquatic sports, including a sandy beach, saltwater pool, boatshed with kitchenette, and a private jetty to accommodate a 40+ foot yacht, perfect for sailors.

Nestled within a desired and sheltered location in Newport, Australia, La Dolce Vita has exceptional amenities for aquatic sports, including a sandy beach, saltwater pool, boatshed with kitchenette, and a private jetty to accommodate a 40+ foot yacht, perfect for sailors.

THE ST. LAWRENCE ESTATE

PETITE-RIVIERE-SAINT-FRANCOIS, QUEBEC, CANADA

$1,295,576

Built with the thrill of outdoor recreation in mind,  The St. Lawrence Estate  provides effortless access to some of the most spectacular ski hills in North America: the home is nestled next to Le Massif ski area in Quebec, which boasts the highest vertical in Eastern Canada.

Built with the thrill of outdoor recreation in mind, The St. Lawrence Estate provides effortless access to some of the most spectacular ski hills in North America: the home is nestled next to Le Massif ski area in Quebec, which boasts the highest vertical in Eastern Canada.

RIVER OAK FARM

MAHWAH, NEW JERSEY

PRICE UPON REQUEST.

River Oak Farm  suits the sophisticated equestrian with its 20-stall barn, 14,000 square foot indoor riding arena, five paddocks, and private bridle trails.

River Oak Farm suits the sophisticated equestrian with its 20-stall barn, 14,000 square foot indoor riding arena, five paddocks, and private bridle trails.

SUNSET RIDGE

TELLURIDE, COLORADO

$27,500,000

The indoor recreation enthusiast will enjoy the activity wing of Telluride, Colorado’s  Sunset Ridge , equipped for billiards, ping-pong, and personal gaming, all the while admiring magnificent mountain views.

The indoor recreation enthusiast will enjoy the activity wing of Telluride, Colorado’s Sunset Ridge, equipped for billiards, ping-pong, and personal gaming, all the while admiring magnificent mountain views.

Our Picks for Sarasota Sporting Neighborhoods

Sarasota itself is a wonderful place for those leading "the sporting life."  With our weather, we're able to be outside and active year-round, and so many communities have gone out of their way to build that into their neighborhood's signature way of life.  If you need help finding the perfect neighborhood to satisfy your lifestyle needs, let us help you! 

We've got homes listed in two fabulous neighborhoods that support the sporting life.  Have a look...

The Meadows

Residents of the Meadows enjoy the three 18-hole championship golf courses, 14 miles of sidewalks and bike trails, a 1.7-mile fitness loop and 5,000 square foot fitness center to satisfy their active lifestyle.  If you want access to it all, have a look at our featured listing in The Meadows, 4305 Highland Oaks Circle!

Mote Ranch

This off-the-beaten path neighborhood is not as well known as its nearby contemporaries in and around North Sarasota, but it's proximity to the entertainment of Lakewood Ranch Main Street, the new shopping mecca of University Town Center, as well as Braden River & Ward Lake make it the perfect location for those who desire a quiet community with ample access to everything else!  The launch right from the neighborhood community area (which also includes a community center, pool, nature trail, and playground!) means easy access for kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards heading down the Braden River.  Check out our listing in Mote Ranch, 6520 Grand Point Avenue!

Best Views from the Top for Under $1M

Penthouses and high-level condos with sweeping views of Sarasota Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, and/or the downtown skyline typically come with a price tag.  Downtown Sarasota has options ranging from under $300K for a modest condo to multi-million dollar homes and condos of pure luxury.  Let's take a look at the perfect middle; here's what's available right now on high floors downtown for under $1 million.

Penthouses 

Penthouses for under $1 million are rare in any market, so it's incredible that we have a few amazing opportunities for buyers to get into one at this price point here in Sarasota!  Take a look...

Fantastic Value at One Watergate

It's almost criminal that this gorgeous condo is under $1 million!  With views of Sarasota Bay out to the Gulf of Mexico, over all the keys, and the downtown shoreline, this one wins BEST VALUE in our book!  One Watergate's amenities include a large lap pool and rooftop tennis, in addition to on-site management.  The location is walkable to the restaurants at VUE and the Ritz, and only a short stroll to Main Street downtown.

Condo on the Bay Penthouse

Water, water, and more water!  This condo features panoramic views of Sarasota Bay & the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the pool and marina at Condo on the Bay.  The bayfront building is one of only a few that offer dockage downtown.  Bonus: you're right next door to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Center!

  • 888 Blvd of the Arts #1906
  • 2 bed, 2 bath, 1555 sq ft under air
  • Built in 1982
  • Listed at $990,000

Mid-Rise Penthouse at Lawrence Point II

Located on the Sarasota Bayfront is the exclusive mid-rise Lawrence Point.  Given its smaller size, condos in Lawrence Point are rarely available.  It has a great location right at the base of the Ringling Bridge, and this building enjoys a pool right on the bay as well as fantastic water views.

  • 97 Sunset Drive #PH-2
  • 3 bed, 2 bath, 2309 sq ft under air
  • Built in 1978
  • Listed at $899,999

High Levels

You don't have to be in a penthouse to enjoy the luxuries of high-level living.  Check out a few of the other high-floor, non-penthouse options that will still WOW with their views!

10th Floor in the Ritz

This south-facing condo in the Ritz Carlton Residences overlooks portions of downtown, Golden Gate Point, and Sarasota Bay.  Living in its Ritz has its advantages: access to the Ritz Carlton Beach Club means members-only and luxurious beach days, residents can enjoy a fine dining experience at Jack Dusty, and amenities such as valet and concierge really make you feel top-shelf!

  • 1111 Ritz Carlton Drive #1006
  • 1 bed, 1 bath, 1408 sq ft under air
  • Built in 2001
  • Listed at $995,000

Above the Middle of Everything at 1350 Main

1350 Main is right in the heart of the liveliest part of downtown.  Walkable to the best restaurants, around the corner from Florida Studio Theatre and the Sarasota Opera House -- you really are on top of everything.  The higher up you go in 1350, the more spanning views of the sparkling nighttime skyline of downtown you get, and if you're facing the right way, like this gorgeous condo, you also get views of the marina and Sarasota Bay!

  • 1350 Main Street #1106
  • 2 bed, 2 bath, 1597 sq ft under air
  • Built in 2007
  • Listed at $950,000

Luxury and style can be obtained downtown at any price point.  If you are interested in relocating to or within downtown Sarasota, please give me a call today to let me help you find your perfect View from the Top!

A Quiet Retreat in Mote Ranch

Have you heard?

The downtown waterfront and beaches are no longer the only draw to our local area of Sarasota.  With expansion coming on all sides, Sarasota over the last decade has kept pace by creating other meccas around the county, making the former outskirts destinations all their own.  Allow me to introduce you to a small, north-of-University neighborhood called Mote Ranch.  It's located about 10 miles from downtown Sarasota, but only minutes from bustling Lakewood Ranch and always-growing and on-trend University Town Center Mall and the rest of the University Corridor, full of enough shops and restaurants to make downtown jealous!

Mote Ranch

This small community features mature landscaping in a tucked-away location.  The quiet neighborhood has a fishing pier, kayak launch, community center & pool, public playground, and its own nature trail.  It truly brings Florida's natural beauty to the forefront.

The eternal appeal of a walkable downtown lifestyle hasn't lifted, but if you desire a little more peace and quiet, our new listing in Mote Ranch is perfect for you!  Recently & thoroughly updated to have a super-spacious kitchen with built-in wine refrigeration and a gorgeous stone feature wall & 8' long electric fireplace in the living room, this nearly 2500 sq' home is a quiet retreat with a modern appeal.  Take a peek!

Screen Shot 2018-03-06 at 7.37.24 AM.png

6520 Grand Point Avenue

in University Park's Mote Ranch

  • 3 bedrooms
  • 2 bathrooms
  • 2,468 sq ft under air
  • Pond view, 1/4-acre lot
  • Spacious lanai & separate, fenced dog run
Welcome home!  A neatly landscaped private courtyard, screened porch, and french doors greet you.

Welcome home!  A neatly landscaped private courtyard, screened porch, and french doors greet you.

The updated modern & coastal interior instantly relaxes you.  The open-concept space features a spacious living room for cozy, relaxing evenings; an updated kitchen perfect for entertaining with massive island with seating & built-in wine chiller as well as a breakfast nook overlooking the backyard; and a formal dining room for your more elegant occasions and holidays.

Thoughtful details, such as this stunning feature wall, make this space unique.  Grab a blanket and settle down in front of the fire on chilly winter nights, or open up the sliders and let the breeze in on a warm spring afternoon!  The gorgeous stone wall with built-ins mean displaying your trinkets and photos in style!

Thoughtful details, such as this stunning feature wall, make this space unique.  Grab a blanket and settle down in front of the fire on chilly winter nights, or open up the sliders and let the breeze in on a warm spring afternoon!  The gorgeous stone wall with built-ins mean displaying your trinkets and photos in style!

Soaring ceilings of 10-12' feet in height throughout the home make every space feel very open, and the multitude of windows keep the home light & bright!  The master retreat features a walk-out to the lanai, as well as a large master bath and two walk-in closets.

Soaring ceilings of 10-12' feet in height throughout the home make every space feel very open, and the multitude of windows keep the home light & bright!  The master retreat features a walk-out to the lanai, as well as a large master bath and two walk-in closets.

The ultra-private lanai opens up to the calm waters of a pond, where (yes, it's true!) sandhill cranes and other Florida fauna frequent.  A fenced in dog-run provides your best pal with a space all his own.  

This HGTV-style renovated home is waiting for you!  Bring your kayak and come enjoy the quiet peace and serenity of Grand Point in Mote Ranch.  For more information on this home, visit its property page here or give me a call today!

Just Listed: Contemporary Luxury in Q

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 11.47.00 AM.png

If condo-style living isn't right for you, but the downtown life IS, then you want one of the few townhouse communities in Sarasota to be your next home (vacation or permanent!).  We just listed this GAW-GEOUS townhome in downtown's Q, a small community of 40 luxury townhouses.  Located off of Ringling between Orange & Osprey, you're in the heart of downtown: steps from the Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings, minutes from Whole Foods, and a stroll to any of downtown's cultural amenities such as the Sarasota Opera, the Player's Theatre, or a number of art galleries!  In the center of it all, but in a space all your own... Have a look...

270 Cosmopolitan Court

in Q

  • 2 bedrooms
  • 2.5 bathrooms
  • 1,735 sq' under air
  • Approx. 500 sq' of rooftop terrace
Attached two-car garage and modern front entry.

Attached two-car garage and modern front entry.

Welcome home!  Sleek and chic--ride your elevator up to the rooftop for a nightcap!

Welcome home!  Sleek and chic--ride your elevator up to the rooftop for a nightcap!

Imagine stepping off your elevator onto the second floor, a luxurious & contemporary space that includes an upgraded kitchen; sleek living room with floor-to-ceiling windows; dining room with a positively stunning light fixture, wine bar, and wine refrigeration; a small powder room that makes a big stylish statement; and the master suite...

Imagine yourself retreating after a long day to this modern oasis... relaxing in the large soak tub with a glass of wine before closing your eyes in the master bedroom, safe and secure thanks to the Control 4 Smart House system that runs throughout the townhome.  Video surveillance, security, intercom, lighting and sound control all will be right at your fingertips, no matter where you are.

Or perhaps resting and relaxing is not for you--not today!  Today is a cocktails-on-the-roof type of day!  Invite friends and family to join you on the rooftop terrace, with nearly 500 square feet of entertaining space, both covered for your sun-sensitive friends, and open, for those looking to catch some Sarasota sunshine.

Or perhaps resting and relaxing is not for you--not today!  Today is a cocktails-on-the-roof type of day!  Invite friends and family to join you on the rooftop terrace, with nearly 500 square feet of entertaining space, both covered for your sun-sensitive friends, and open, for those looking to catch some Sarasota sunshine.

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 11.48.24 AM.png

Your guests will rest in the same comfort you will, in this luxurious en-suite bedroom on the ground floor.  The attached bath is bright and modern, and a small living space just outside the bedroom door provides a room for your guests to unwind before bed without disturbing the peace of the main floor.

There are terraces on every level, and a luxurious, high-end hotel feel in every room.

If you would like more information on this property, please check out the property page here, or give me a call today!

Just Listed in Brand-New VUE

Just Listed!

These past couple weeks we have been enjoying a very new View from the Top...that of our just-listed condo in downtown's newest high-rise, The VUE!  VUE sits right next to the Ritz-Carlton and Westin Hotel on the downtown side of the Ringling Bridge.  Owners have only recently begun moving into this stylish and modern building, whose construction Sarasota has been watching over the course of the past two years at the Gulfstream/Tamiami intersection.

Check it out! 

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 12.12.36 PM.png

1155 N. Gulfstream Ave #1404

  • 2 bedrooms + Den
  • 2.5 baths
  • 1,920 sq ft
  • Massive Terrace
  • 2 prime-location parking spots
  • Offered for $1,540,000
  • Jaw-dropping views!

At VUE, it really is all about the view! A private elevator and foyer lead you to this grand, pristine residence, where Italian porcelain tile and high ceilings frame the picture-perfect view. An ultra-modern kitchen features white quartz countertops, Nolte cabinetry, and a vast island. The open floorplan lends itself perfectly to hosting your most fabulous parties, with plenty of room for friends to spill onto the spacious terrace. Even better, you won’t have to get out of bed to enjoy the breathtaking view and day-long natural light! The master suite features a huge walk-in closet and contemporary master bath with double sinks and large walk-in shower. Need room for a library, office, or extra seating? Relax in the bonus den, overlooking the city skyline and the Gulf. You’ll love being steps away from Jacky Dusty at the Ritz or the new Westin rooftop bar; taking a short stroll to the Farmer’s Market or the Opera, or perhaps just riding your bike to the beach! Need to drive? You’ll find your cars in 2 prime-location spaces on the plaza level. If views are what you came for, and a life of luxury is what you desire, you have found it.

VUE Amenities

  • Community pool (it's huge!)
  • Spa
  • Large amount of outdoor entertaining space, including an outdoor kitchen for residents' use
  • Fitness room overlooking Sarasota Bay
  • Community room with bar
  • 24-hour concierge
  • Secure parking

They were not exaggerating when they named this building - the VIEW is the star here!  Spanning full views of Sarasota Bay, the barrier islands, the Gulf of Mexico, the Ringling Bridge, and the downtown skyline are offered from nearly every room in this perfectly luxurious condominium.  Are you ready to find your View from the Top?  Give us a call today if you would like more information!

The Importance of Staging: A Case Study

We regularly help our clients stage their homes for sale.  As we mentioned in our last blog on this topic, staging is important for a myriad of reasons.  In short, staging helps a potential buyer be able to envision how the space could work for them, and allows sellers to highlight features of their home more clearly to buyers.  

We have a penthouse listed right now in downtown Sarasota high-rise One Watergate, 1111 N. Gulfstream Avenue, Penthouse B.  This condo has been gorgeous from the get-go, with a stunning view that spans from the downtown skyline to the waters of the Gulf of Mexico and a modern interior.  It's easy to think that the view and the location would speak for themselves here.  Take a look at what a difference the decor can make...

Staging: A Case Study

One Watergate Penthouse

The main living space in this condo is spacious, with subtle lighting and modern details, like the accent wall.  It also overlooks the marina and Sarasota Bay.  Not bad, but how could we make it better?

Two major changes here made all the difference: removal of the bright rug made the space feel more open, and rearranging the furniture filled up the vast space in a more intimate way than when it was all lined right up to the wall.  A couple tchotchkes made the room look more "lived in" and provided the finishing touch.

Before

Before

After

After

A second living space again was working only right angles in the space; lines and perpendiculars made the space feel very utilitarian.  Swapping out the rug for a neutral one again makes the space feel more open and less choppy.  We removed the TV and spun the chairs around so that they would showcase something better: the fantastic view.  Changing up the artwork and adding a lamp completed this cozy redone room.

Before

Before

After

After

The dining room was almost perfect from the beginning.  The light fixture is modern and fun, the table and chairs fit the space well and are in great condition, and the artwork was fine.  We only made one change here but it makes all the difference in the world: we set the table.  Instantly, this room feels more like home, like dinner is waiting for you and friends are on their way over. 

Before

Before

After

After

The master bedroom looked very nice from the beginning, but room lacked art and small details that made it feel warm and fuzzy.  The duvet was changed out to a subtle pattern and art was added to anchor the bed area.  

Before

Before

After

After

We hope that by our little case study here you see that small changes can make a big difference!  The goal of staging is not to hide anything, but to highlight the positives.  Simply put, we want your home to be the most attractive to the most amount of people.  If you would like help selling your home or condo, please give us a call today, and we'll bring our staging expertise to you.

Just Sold: The View From The Top on LonGBOAT KEY

Clients of mine just purchased a spectacular condo on Longboat Key with the most gorgeous water views!  Grand Bay in Bay Isles is a 6-building condo community with spanning water views of Sarasota Bay, housing 272 of the most desirable addresses on Longboat.  Being behind the gates of the coveted Longboat Key Club means not only security and privacy, but also access to the Bay Isles Beach Club on the gulf side for the best of both worlds!

3040 Grand Bay Blvd #246

  • 3 bedrooms

  • 3.5 bathrooms

  • 2,925 square feet under air

  • Full balcony AND private terrace

  • Sold for just over $1.6 million

This condo home was purchased fully furnished.  Take a look at the photos from the original MLS listing!  (Photo credit to my fellow Michael Saunders & Company listing agents Ann Martin & Joanna Benante.)

These particular clients were referred to me from past clients who just bought in the newest downtown development, The VUE.  Both sets of clients are Realtors from other states, so it's great to know that we deliver the caliber of work that other Realtors who know the business expect.

I am actually out at the condo today to ensure it is prepared for their arrival.  Here are a couple pictures from this chilly morning over Sarasota Bay.  Stay warm out there, Sarasota, and keep enjoying all the beautiful Views from the Top!

2017: The Year Sarasota Got Recognized... over and over again!

Our team over at the Michael Saunders corporate office put together this (very) long list of accolades our small city received in 2017.  While it's nothing those of us who already live here don't know, it's nice to see the world at large is paying attention!  Check our all the notoriety from 2017!  Reblogged directly from www.michaelsaunders.com/blog/

Accolades for Sarasota, Bradenton & Beyond: Why We’re No. 1

 By: Kathryn Parks | December 6, 2017 

From “#1 Beach” to “Best City for Small Businesses”, our region saw its share of notable achievements in 2017. We’ve compiled a list of Manatee, Charlotte, and Sarasota accolades – 20 more reasons why we love where we live.

Screen Shot 2017-12-14 at 10.16.17 AM.png

#1 Beach in the United States | Siesta Beach
Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman (aka Dr. Beach), coastal expert and professor at Florida International University, named Siesta Beach the #1 beach in the United States based on fifty criteria, including water,  sand quality, number of sunny days, safety and management.

Happiest Cities in the United States  | North Port / Sarasota / Bradenton
According to National Geographic Explorer, our region has joined a very happy collection of 20 communities across the Unites States. North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton was noted as a place where “locals smile and laugh more often, socialize several hours a day, have access to green spaces, and feel that they are making purposeful progress toward achieving life goals.”

The Best Place to Retire in 2018 | Sarasota
US News and World Report named Sarasota as No. 1 retirement spot in the country, providing a high quality of life at an affordable price.

Best City for Young Entrepreneurs  | North Port / Sarasota / Bradenton
MoneyRates.com named the North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton region as the number one city in the county with a welcoming climate for young business owners. They considered factors like growth rates, educational attainment, young adult affluence, and business tax environment.

Useppa Island

Useppa Island

10 Best Car-Free Island Getaways Useppa Island
Coastal Living encouraged readers to leave their keys and cars behind, featuring top destinations in the United States where no car is needed.

Most Extraordinary Beaches in the World | Venice Beach
Expedia named Venice Beach to this illustrious list of beaches from all over the world, noting it’s moniker as the “Shark’s Tooth Capital of the World.”

Best States for Business | Florida
Chief Executive Magazine ranked Florida #2 for the fifth year in a row in their comprehensive list of “Best & Worst States for Business” citing Florida’s annual job growth rate of 3.2%, exceeding the nation’s rate of 1.7%.

The Preppiest Wedding Locations around the World | Boca Grande
With a penchant for bright colors and fun fabrics, Town and Country Magazine named Boca Grande to this preppy list, recognizing the Gasparilla Inn & Club for its picturesque setting.

Screen Shot 2017-12-14 at 10.19.13 AM.png

100 Best Places to Live | Sarasota
US News and World Report analyzed the 100 most populous metro areas to find the best places to live. They named Sarasota #21 based on its good value, desirability, strong job market, and high quality of life.

Healthiest Regions in Florida | Sarasota County
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ranked the 67 counties of Florida in terms of health and wellness. Sarasota was named 3rd for overall health outcomes (length and quality of life) and 2nd for overall health factors (behavior, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment).

Venice

Venice

Best Places to Retire | Venice
GoodCall.com named Venice #14 to its 2017 Best Cities for Seniors to Retire.

Safest Cities in Florida | Punta Gorda & Venice
The National Council for Home Safety and Security looked at the safest cities in Florida based on the number of reported crimes per 100,000 people. Punta Gorda was named #14 while Venice clocked in at #28.

Happiest Cities in America |  North Port / Sarasota / Bradenton
North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton ranked at #6 in the United States for highest well-being communities by Gallup-Healthways.

#1 Beach in the United States | Siesta Beach
TripAdvisor’s Travelors’ Choice Awards gave Siesta Beach the #1 spot to it’s collection of the top 25 beaches in the United States.

Best Place for Small Business | Sarasota-Bradenton
Topping the list, American City Business Journal named Sarasota-Bradenton #1 for Small Business Vitality Rankings.

Cast of Asolo Rep’s production SHOW BOAT. Photo by Frank Atura

Cast of Asolo Rep’s production SHOW BOAT. Photo by Frank Atura

Happiest Seaside Towns | Sarasota
Coastal Living noted Sarasota’s world-class beaches and top-shelf arts and culture scene, ranking it as the 3rd happiest seaside town in America.

Top Selling Master Planned Communities | Lakewood Ranch
Real estate consultant firm, RCLCO, named Lakewood Ranch the third most top-selling master-planned community in 2017.

#1 Performing Arts Hall | Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
The fifth time winning this title, Sarasota’s favorite purple venue topped the national list from Venues Today of performing arts halls in North America in the 2,000-seat category.

LECOM Park in Bradenton

LECOM Park in Bradenton

Best of the Ballparks Spring Training | LECOM Park
Fans voted overwhelmingly on Ballpark Digest, naming LECOM Park in Bradenton as the Best of Ballparks in the Grapefruit League for Spring Training.

Florida’s Best Kept Secret | Sarasota
Beyond accolades, Vogue Magazine did a feature story on the Sarasota area, touting it as perhaps Florida’s best kept secret. Author Christina Perez noted that our region was home to some of the country’s finest examples of mid-century modern architecture, beaches, and cultural attractions.

Do you want to find out why so many people, publications, and research analysts love Florida’s Gulf Coast? Contact your Michael Saunders & Company sales agent to learn more about Charlotte, Manatee, and Sarasota real estate.


If you have decided that you agree with all these kudos and are ready to make Sarasota your home, please give us a call for all your real estate needs!  If you are moving from out of town or out of state, we can even help you find a great Realtor from our nationwide network!

The Importance of Staging

By Molly Russo

Screen Shot 2017-12-05 at 10.20.52 AM.png

Why Stage?

While many people think a "blank slate" is best for potential buyers to envision the space with their own personal touches, we've found the exact opposite to be true.  Blank canvases are great for artists but leave potential home buyers with more questions than answers.  The main question answered by home staging is...

How will my stuff fit in this space?

Delineate Space in Open-Concept

Show potential buyers how an open-concept home can be laid out, to be functional and still intimate.  Open-concept homes that are empty can leave buyers scratching their head wondering how the layout will work for them.

BEFORE: Oh no!  Stark and "small!"  How will it all fit?

BEFORE: Oh no!  Stark and "small!"  How will it all fit?

AFTER: Oh yeah!  With furniture, it all makes sense!*

AFTER: Oh yeah!  With furniture, it all makes sense!*

Make Space Appear Larger 

Surprisingly, empty spaces can feel smaller than they would with furniture.  My home had this problem: front door opened directly into an apparently tiny living room, and I thought "How will everything I have fit in here?  This looks too small!"  Thank goodness my realtor (and View from the Top extraordinaire, Allison Werner) has an eye for these things and quickly explained how I could lay out the room.  Turns out the space wasn't the issue - everything fit perfectly - but it was hard to envision without the furniture there to guide me.  

Make Space Appear More Intimate 

Large empty spaces can feel cavernous.  With the addition of well-scaled furniture and accent pieces, homeowners can see how they could fill what might initially appear to be an intimidatingly large space.

BEFORE:  Cavernous, empty space.  How will someone use this room?  No one knows....

BEFORE:  Cavernous, empty space.  How will someone use this room?  No one knows....

AFTER: Seating areas and a rug define the space and make it make sense!

AFTER: Seating areas and a rug define the space and make it make sense!

Make Space Feel More Homey

This part is all about the touchy-feely.  Set the table, put out flowers, have a fresh mat at the front door.  You want potential buyers to feel like they are walking into a well-lived and well-loved HOME, not just a house.  

Guess what?  Staging happens to be our specialty!

Did I mention Allison is the entire reason my living room works?  She has an eye for making the most out of a room.  We regularly work with sellers to stage their home in the most welcoming way.  If you are interested in selling your home, know that with us, we will add the finishing touches to make any space go from "blank slate" to "perfectly staged!"  Give us a call today if we can help you market and sell your home.

The above home was a renovated, never-been-lived-in by the current owners.  Can you tell?  We sure couldn't!  Staging made all the difference in this sale.+

+This house was owned by a professional stager and was not staged by us, but proves all our points about what makes staging so important!

New Construction in Lakewood Ranch's Country Club East

Building with Neal Signature Homes

While previewing lots and homes for a client last week, I was fortunate to get a behind-the-scenes look at a few Neal Signature Homes being built in Lakewood Ranch's Country Club East.    Have a look at this new construction, in various stages from start to finish, in this fantastic luxury community!

Lots

IMG_5437.JPG

Neal has a selection of lots left in Country Club East and the community is now in its final phases.  (Call us today if you'd like to take a look at them!)  This waterfront lot is just starting to be built on and it overlooks both fairway and pond (AKA water hazard/mulligan!).  It will be a "feature" home, where the builder builds on spec and sells the finished home, rather than the buyer being present from the beginning and making all finish selections.  Neal also builds elsewhere and there are other builders also building in CCE, so if you like either the neighborhood or the builder, we have access to more inventory.  :-)

Partially-Built

Check out the pictures of the two homes we saw in partial construction.  The first is framed out and roofed, with the blueprint of the walls complete, so we were able to walk through each "room" and get the feel of the overall home's footprint.

The second one we saw had drywall up and cabinetry ready to go in.  

And the finished product...

I am the lucky listing agent of a gorgeous and modern Neal-built home.  These homeowners worked with the builder and a designer to modernize the typically-more-traditional feel of homes in Lakewood Ranch, choosing streamlined finishes and modern fixtures.

This is 14906 Castle Park Terrace.  

  • 3 bedrooms + den
  • 2 bathrooms
  • 2,465 square feet
  • Maintenance-free
  • Listed for $649,900

It is so interesting to see this process from start to finish, especially when the finished product is so stunning.  For all of your real estate needs, including retreats away from downtown such like Lakewood Ranch, please give us a call!

This Season in the Arts

It’s about to be that time — the time our cultural landscape switches into high gear.  From art galleries to music venues to theater, there is no question why Sarasota has often been dubbed “The Cultural Coast.”  Here’s a quick summary of what’s coming to the big stages in Sarasota this upcoming season.  

2017-2018 Season Review

Asolo Repertory Theatre

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 1.16.38 PM.png

The Asolo’s season will open with Andrew Lloyd Webber classic Evita showcasing Eva Peron’s rise to power in Argentina.  The play will be directed and choreographed by Josh Rhodes, who handled Guys and Dolls in the 2016-2017 season.  Evita runs November 18 through December 30.

After the new year, the Asolo will be only the third theater in the country to stage Shakespeare in Love, a stage adaptation of the award-winning movie about Will Shakespeare and his muse, Viola.  Shakespeare in Love runs January 19 to March 4.

Closing off next season, from June 6 to June 24, the Rep will put on The Jungle Book.  This is a world-premier put on by the creators of last season’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.  Enhanced by whimsical videos and audience-interaction technology, this production of the Kipling classic looks like it will be compelling, to say the least.

For Asolo Rep’s full schedule and for tickets, visit their website here.

Sarasota Opera

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 1.20.31 PM.png

What is more downtown than heading to the opera?  The stunning Opera House, which sits in the heart of downtown on Pineapple Avenue, was originally built in 1926 and completely renovated nearly 10 years ago.  If you haven’t stopped in lately, step into old world Sarasota and plan a night at the Opera this season.  This season includes six performances, including two absolutely time-honored productions, La Traviata and Carmen.

For the Opera’s full schedule and for tickets, visit their website here.

Sarasota Ballet

Iain Webb’s Sarasota Ballet Company enters its 27th Season with an exciting range of 13 ballets by some of the most celebrated and prestigious choreographers and composers of the ballet world.  First up this season is the Frances Hodgson Burnett classic The Secret Garden, bringing the story of Mary, an orphan sent to live with a recluse uncle, and her secret garden to life by narration, puppetry, and dance.

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 1.26.08 PM.png

Always a seasonal favorite, the Ballet will put on The Nutcracker in December.  This adaptation is done Sarasota-style, so be prepared for some circus flair!

For full schedule and tickets, visit the Ballet’s website here.