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Options for residences on south Longboat Key

by Roger Pettingell

Ten Longboat communities with CMAs

Southern end of Longboat Key, from the New Pass Bridge to Bay Isles

Homes and residences behind the gates of Bay Isles have deeded access to the Bay Isles Beach Club
Bay Isles Beach Club - Deeded beach access

Residences like Beachplace and Grand Bay are very popular, and on each coast of Longboat Key. There are many that line the shores on the lower end of Longboat Key, from New Pass on the south to Bay Isles about the midway point. Bay Isles covers a large surface area as Longboat Key widens to support the island with a Publix, CVS and boutique shops. Within this area homeowners have deeded access to the beach club that includes amenities on the Gulf of Mexico white sands. Bay Isles is behind two 24/7 manned gates that I discuss these perks in my REALTALK™ #109 video and in a 2016 REALTALKplus™ article.

Last week I posted Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) reports for ten of these communities in the southern half of Longboat Key. These monthly reports show Active, Pending and Sold listings, some as far back as a decade. I have provided a link in this report to those CMAs.

L'Ambiance Community spotlight
L'Ambiance - Spotlight in REALTALK™ #104.

Once over the New Pass bridge from Lido Key you will turn left just past the Chart House restaurant and pass through the gates of the Longboat Key Club, around the golf course bend to access the L’Ambiance community of 136 residences in two buildings on your left. This is luxury living on the Gulf of Mexico, with 300 feet of white sand as your private beach. With Har-Tru tennis courts, 240-foot swimming pool and a concierge staff in each building, you may never want to leave. Built in 1992, it sets adjacent to the Longboat Key Club with two championship golf courses and 20 Har-Tru tennis courts. I discussed L’Ambiance in a community showcase in REALTALK™ #104 and in this REALTALKplus™ article. The monthly CMAs for L’Ambiance extend back to 2010.

Continue up Longboat Club Road to the Pierre. You can get a three-bedroom residence with an average floor space of 2,410 square feet overlooking the Gulf on one side and the club’s Links on Longboat across the street. There are 66 residences and amenities to rival the other luxury communities on the island. Relax in the heated pool and hot tub or stay healthy with the fitness center and on the tennis courts. Feel safe with state-of-the-art security and manned guard gate. It is one of our newest members of CMAs back to 2017.

The next door neighbor to the Pierre is the Sanctuary, aptly named for it has a haven-like atmosphere in five buildings, spread out over 18 acres on Sanctuary Drive. Of the 181 units, the Ascot floor plan has 3,115 square feet of floor space and 800 square feet of terrace for wonderful sunset views. The five to seven floor buildings were built in phases from 1989 to 1992, with under-building deeded parking spaces. Residents also enjoy the 25-meter heated lap pool, fitness center, two tennis courts, spa and clubhouse. There are seven years of monthly CMAs and was also covered in a REALTALKplus™ article.

Residences in Regent Place are rarely available for sale. Once you purchase a unit here you likely will want to hang onto it. It’s also on Longboat Club Road past the Sanctuary and Longboat Key Towers. These units are spaced out in two buildings with an oversized swimming pool, fitness center and clubhouse separating these structures. Regent Place has some of the largest floor plans in their regular units on Longboat Key, built in 1995 and continues to fetch high dollar. Each owner has two enclosed garage spaces. Regent Place CMAs came online with its first to appear in April of 2012.

Other communities on Longboat Club Road offer a wide selection of floor plans and amenities. They have one thing in common, with a short drive they are close to St. Armands Circle and the shopping complex at Bay Isles. If you have a Longboat Key Club membership you are likely overlooking the Links On Longboat golf course and some of the amenities that are offered through the club that I covered in a REALTALKplus™ article.

Back to the beginning of our venture. Driving from the New Pass bridge your first residences on the Gulf of Mexico Drive right side is Tangerine Bay. Flanked by a bird sanctuary on the south at Quick Point and the popular Dry Dock Waterfront Grill, you can get your exercise early and have lunch at noon, all within a short walk of each other. The Tangerine Bay Club is an oasis within an oasis. The beautiful lush manicured gardens greet you as you enter this community. The swimming pool and clubhouse is on an island accessible in the center of the property by walking bridges, creating stunning views from the units facing inward from the five buildings at Tangerine Bay. Buildings I and V face Sarasota Bay, where a day dock is available on a first served basis. Tangerine Bay CMAs have been covered each month since 2014.

Beachplace Community spotlight
Beachplace - Spotlight in REALTALK™ #76.

On the Gulf side our next community up Gulf of Mexico Drive has 11 buildings on 31 acres on the beach, Beachplace is one of the most socially active communities on Longboat Key. Arvida Corporation constructed these buildings over three years starting in 1979. Residences average around 1,500 square feet and are offered as two or three bedroom units. Amenities include a state-of-the art fitness center, Olympic size swimming pool and three Har-Tru tennis courts. Buildings either overlook the Gulf or the peaceful lake with soothing fountains. It too has a 24/7 manned guard gate and on-site management. I covered Beachplace in a REALTALK™ #76 video with the Gulf as my background and in a REALTALKplus™ article. Monthly CMAs for Beachplace started in 2012.

Next door to the north is the Promenade, constructed in 1985. Units here range in size from just under 1,600 square feet to the largest at 4,172 square feet, in two and three bedroom configurations. The 112 residences are surrounded by a heated swimming pool, clubhouse, four tennis courts, fitness center and hot tub. Security is 24/7 with manned guard gates and on-site management are there to help with your needs to make your stay comfortable. For more information see my REALTALK™ #118 video and read my REALTALKplus™ article. Monthly CMAs for Promenade started in 2012.

Water Club Community spotlight
Water Club - Spotlight in REALTALK™ #127.

The Water Club is the next set of residences as you continue your tour up Gulf of Mexico Drive. The centerpiece of this community is its grand Mediterranean style clubhouse. There exceptional amenities found only at the Water Club in the Clubhouse is a spacious ballroom, catering kitchen, library with fireplace, pool table and table tennis. The Water Club provides its signature amenities including an outdoor hot tub, two indoor hot tubs, Olympic size swimming pool and the azure colored waters of the Gulf. There are four lighted tennis courts. Security is provided 24/7 with guard gates and secure garage parking areas. Catch my REALTALK™ #127 video, read the REALTALKplus™ article and research monthly CMAs for Water Club dating back to 2010.

Vizcaya is a rare community that is actually divided between the Manatee and Sarasota counties. Built in two years starting in 1997, this community consists of 37 residences. Not only are you on the sandy white beaches of Longboat Key, you have your own Gulf-side pool, a state-of-the art fitness center and private garage space. This is a pet-friendly community with board approval. We started monthly CMAs at Vizcaya in 2012.

Grand Bay Community spotlight
Grand Bay - Spotlight in this REALTALKplus™ article.

Behind the secure gates of Bay Isles, Grand Bay is one of our favorite communities on the bay side of Longboat Key. We often have listings at Grand Bay among the variety of floor plans, some with flow-through residences with views of the Gulf and the bay. It is known for its two resort pools, Har-Tru tennis courts, fitness center and 24-hour security with its own private manned gate entrance. It is more attractive with the Longboat Key Club membership as its Harbourside Golf winds past the six buildings with 272 residences. The Moorings has slips for 291 boats with a full-service marina. Grand Bay is covered in this REALTALK™ #117 video and in a REALTALKplus™ article. Monthly CMAs for Grand Bay started in 2009.

New listings last week

Address List Price Media Slideshow
340 Gulf of Mexico Dr, #122 $1,295,000 Video Photo Slideshow
2016 Harbourside Dr, #344/345 $849,000   Photo Slideshow
1115 Gulf of Mexico Dr, #502 $519,000   Photo Slideshow

 

Call us at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing

 

Mother nature gives and takes away

by Roger Pettingell

Updating the barrier islands with sand

Dredging projects to aid boat navigation and provide beach renourishment

Water, sand and debris is filtered on the beach.
Sand Filtration - One process of renourishment involves pumping sand and water onto the beach and filter out the sand to widen the area.

Now that Longboat Key has plans to dredge 14 canals in four areas of the island, is there an effect on other dredging, renourishment and groin projects in the area? Other planned and current projects affect New Pass, Big Pass, Lido Beach and a groin project on the north end of Longboat Key.

Dredging helps keep the waterways navigable, which may be considered three feet below mean lower level. The town of Longboat is using this measurement in its assessments. Keeping the waterways navigable promotes safety, supports recreation and increases home values along these canals.

With dredging you also have a good resource in some cases to renourish the beaches that we hold as a precious tourist draw. In the case of Longboat Key, the good sand that was deposited by recent storms would have to be sifted out for renourishment projects. Although the city has not decided what to do with the windfall, the 15,000 cubic yards of silt that will be pulled out may end up in a landfill.

The canal project with an estimated $1.2 million cost to cover feasibility studies, engineering, monitoring and dredging is expected to begin in the fall of 2019. The city must apply first for state and federal permits as means to discover any mitigating damage to wildlife and plants. Roughly 25% of the cost will be paid by Sarasota County, ten of the 14 canals are in Manatee County.

Dredging New Pass
Dredging New Pass - Workers begin their day for the project to increase the inlet depth and provide sand renourishment to the beaches of Lido Key.

The current project on New Pass by the drawbridge between Lido Key and Longboat Key will help offset what Hurricanes Hermine did in 2016 and Irma accomplished in 2017. Not only did these hurricanes move the sand into the channel, they reduced the width of the beaches on Lido Key that opened up considerable damage to waterfront properties. As a result New Pass had become unnavigable and the popular beach destination of Lido Key was less appealing and dangerous. This year the U.S. Coast Guard removed the channel markers from New Pass as the shifting shoal created hazardous conditions for boaters, especially those with significant drafts on fixed keel sailboats. The cost of this project is $3.9 million dollars which is expected to move 185,000 cubic yards in the 90 days of the project.

More lasting solutions to the problem on Lido Key beach has been presented, including moving sand from Big Pass to Lido Key. Big Pass is an inlet to the Gulf between Siesta Key and Lido Key. Some residents of Siesta Key have filed lawsuits to prevent the project, claiming there will be erosion on the world renown beaches of Siesta Key, a perennial favorite of beach judges and travel sites. With funds from local, state and federal governments this project is expected to begin in the spring of 2019.

In September 600 feet of beach was renourished on the north end of Longboat Key to help recover from Hurricane Irma one year before. Over 1,300 trucks from Davenport hauled in nearly 22 tons of white quartz sand during that project. White quartz sand is prevalent in the area, making it popular with tourists because it reflects 99 percent of the heat and is comfortable on bare feet.

At the same time Longboat Key started a process and is requesting permission from the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers to place five groins in the area spaced 350 feet apart, starting on the south side of Greer Island on the Gulf of Mexico side at the northern edge of Longboat Key. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection must also approve the project. The groins jut out into the Gulf and restrict the devastating force of seawater during a storm. If approved, the $12 million project could begin as early as fall 2019.

Longboat Key residents and businesses have become accustomed to renourishment projects. In the spring of 2016 Longboat Key used a three-sided attack on renourishing its beaches. Through the use of truck deliveries, dredging and renourishment, the $25 million project was approved by voters as a referendum a few years earlier. During that summer nearly 60-100 trucks moved sand from out of the county, and over the Ringling Bridge to eventually find their way to various points of Longboat Key. Dredging on New Pass and Longboat Pass to the north accounted for much of the renourishment on the southern and northern ends of the island.

Water, sand and debris is filtered on the beach.
24-hours a day - The project four years ago on Anna Maria Island required workers to complete shiftwork.

It is a common process on other barrier islands on the Gulf of Mexico side of Florida. Each county with scenic beaches have had some level of renourishment in the last few years. A major project on Anna Maria Island had beaches closed for a few months in 2014. Workers spent 24 hours each day working in shifts on land and on barges to use the offshore natural resources of sand deposits to renourish the beaches there. Nearly 900,000 cubic yards of sand was used to widen 4.7 miles of beaches there. An additional two miles and another 216,000 cubic yards were added to that project.

Beach erosion is a natural process. Experts estimate that 10-15 feet of beach width is eroded each year from pounding waves against the shoreline. Sometimes we put up with some inconveniences to perpetuate the paradise we live in. I listed two residences for sale on Longboat Key last week, increasing our inventory for the peak sale months. The first is a beautifully furnished residence at the Players Club. This amenity-rich community recently finished remodeling its clubhouse. The second is a home on the north end within a short walk of Greer Island discussed in this article. Florida-sourced vegetation surround this charmingly private bungalow in Long Beach. Please contact me at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing or if you have a property to sell or buy.

Address List Price Media Slideshow
1445 Gulf of Mexico Dr, #202 $799,000 Video Photo Slideshow
454 Firehouse Court $789,000 Video Photo Slideshow

 

Call us at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing

 

The eventual rise of Longboat Key

by Roger Pettingell

Longboat Key: Circus times to today

Our story picks up from last week on the history of Longboat Key

Ritz-Carlton hotel in 1952
Ritz-Carlton - Ringling's dream of a grand hotel on Longboat Key ended in the late 1920s. The structure was demolished in 1964 to make way for Arvida's new Longboat Key Club with its many amenities

While John Ringling had eyes on developing his circus on the mainland, he had a keen sense for the barrier islands as a real estate developer. He was the visionary for bringing his circus to Sarasota in 1927 and purchasing land in the Sarasota area. It was that period before then in which he purchased much of the south end of Longboat Key, an undeveloped Bird Key, St. Armands Key and a couple smaller keys. He set out to create a grand playground for the rich to vacation in this slice of paradise.

A short time before then, another developer Owen Burns had his own plans for developing Sarasota and the barrier islands, starting with the development of the Lido Key Beach. Before World War I, under his Burns Realty Company and the Burns Construction Company he was instrumental in its development and the area now known as Burns Court in Sarasota.

He and Ringling together were working together to manage the tremendous growth they had seen for the area. This is where we pick up from last week on the early years of Longboat Key, and progress to what is today Longboat Key.

St. Armands Circle was a vision Ringling had for shops and dining. He purchased a home under construction to be used for Warren G. Harding as a winter White House for the president. This was a great growth spurt for the area during this period of the roaring twenties. Ringling also set out to construct the first Ringling Bridge from Sarasota to St. Armands Key in 1925. It was then that his grandest illusion was forming, the construction of a Ritz-Carlton branded hotel that would be the invitation for the rich and famous.

Tragedy struck in many forms. In 1921 a hurricane devastated the area and created a New Pass inlet that now separates Lido Key from Longboat Key. Ringling may have used this as an omen to build his Ritz-Carlton on the southern edge of Longboat Key overlooking New Pass. A bigger set-back may have been the economic breakdown and land bust during the Great Depression that started in 1929. It didn't stop there, there was the death of his beloved wife, Mable, also in 1929. The project was abandoned and the empty shell of this great hotel would sit idle for many years. John Ringling himself would pass on several years later.

One of the remaining Whitney Beach Cottages
Progress Continues - One of the remaining Whitney Beach cottages on the Longboat Key Arts Center site was moved to make way for a new development. A new Arts Center behind the Publix is in development.

One of the first developments on the island began in 1935 when Gordon and Lora Whitney purchased Gulf to Bay property on Longboat Key and built 13 cottages on the northern end of island. These were resort-style properties with a tennis court for use by guests. Whitney Beach was popular and even used during WWII to house servicemen. The resort would close in 1957 and some of the cottages moved to different locations. One of the last remaining cottages was moved to the northeast corner at Gulf of Mexico Drive and Broadway Street. It will be repurposed as a Longboat Key historical museum and greeting center for visitors entering from Bradenton and Anna Maria Island.

Longboat Key would make modest gains in the years following, certainly not at the fervor pace that Ringling had set. Development was slow to a point that even in 1942 the U.S. Air Force saw the barren land on Longboat Key and determined it would be a great location for use as 50-caliber target practice at the beginning of World War II. For a few hours a day P-40 aircraft would strafe the mid-section of the island in their practice sessions.

The town had seen moderate growth following the war and the town would vote to incorporate in November 1955 by nearly a unanimous vote of nearly 100 citizens. Eight commissioners were elected that day, the Honorable Wilfred LaPage was selected among them as the first mayor of Longboat Key. The anniversary is next week.

Longboat Key was to see its next growth spurt. Arthur Vining Davis, with his namesake company by combining the first two letters of his name, Arvida Corporation, made a major investment in Longboat Key by buying up Ringling property holdings from Bird Key to mid-Longboat Key. In the years following the 1958 purchase, the 91-year old Davis with his corporation made great strides in the development of Longboat Key. It was a modern era of growth.

Under Arvida's commitment, Bird Key was forming from a small area of land to a tropical island of well-planned canals and streets. Dredging and land fill expanded the land mass from 12 acres to 250 acres by the early 1960s. Stately homes were built to attract celebrities. The Bird Key Yacht Club was formed in 1959 to become a center post of activity. Today Bird Key is a family-oriented community where you can visit with neighbors on the street, walk your pet or take a relaxing ride on a bike in this gated community.

Arvida was also responsible for the development of Country Club Shores on the south end of the island with its series of canals with direct access to the bay. Arvida was responsible for much of the Bay Isles development, with communities that were distinctly different from each other. Bay Isles is a gated set of communities and its owners have deeded access to the Bay Isles Beach Club. Grand Bay, with its six buildings on the bay is a prime example of this luxury development. Fairway and Marina Bay offer similar lifestyles. Corey’s Landing has its villas with maintenance-free living. Next door is Queens Harbour with single and two-story upscale homes.

New Guard Gate
Longboat Key Club - The old guard gate to Longboat Club Road is in the foreground of the new entrance structure under construction by Ocean Properties

Arvida soon began one of its biggest projects where the abandoned Ritz-Carlton hotel started by Ringling sat deteriorating. It demolished the structure in 1964 and started its plans for the Longboat Key Club where the degrading structure stood. An 18-hole golf course was built near the structure. The Longboat Key Club is now comprised of two championship golf courses, marina in a protected harbor, tennis courts and fine restaurants. Ocean Properties purchased the resort in 2012 and plans are underway to expand with hotels and family residences, discussed in this REALTALKplus™ article.

The Colony Beach and Tennis Resort was also beginning its rise in the 1960s. It would grow to become one of the world’s renown centers for training rising stars in professional tennis. Celebrities gathered there to relax. George Bush stayed at the resort on September 10, 2001 before attending a class demonstration at Booker Elementary School the next day. It was there that he was informed of the hijacking of American airplanes. The Colony fell into bankruptcy and eventually closed in 2010.

Longboat Observer update
Colony Beach & Tennis Resort - Developers faced with obstacles to develop the abandoned property.

But the Colony may rise again. The Orlando company, Unicorp National under its president, Chuck Whittall, have plans to demolish the existing buildings to build a set of 78 luxury residences and a 166-room hotel on the site. Many of the buildings have been taken down, but Unicorp faces some legal hurdles with ownership rights of some units. The completed resort will be run by St. Regis, which manages some of the top hotels in the world and is part of the discussion in this REALTALKplus™ article.

This new growth helps to spurt some luxury home sales, including four new listings last week. Three qualify as Coldwell Banker Global Luxury properties for their price and luxury features. Please contact me at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing or if you have a property to sell or buy.

Address List Price Media Slideshow
604 Mourning Dove Drive $2,495,000 Video Photo Slideshow
1465 Hillview Drive $1,995,000 Video Photo Slideshow
260 N. Shore Rd, #4 $1,695,000   Photo Slideshow
519 Bayview Drive $849,000 Video Photo Slideshow

 

Call us at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing

 

Boating in our slice of Paradise

by Roger Pettingell

Relax on the Gulf or bay open waters

Great opportunities for owning, renting, booking a charter or dinner cruise

Marina Jack in downtown Sarasota
Boating Services at Marina Jack - From super-yachts to boat rentals and dinner cruises, this marina is highly respected throughout the United States for its expert services to boaters and fine dining.

We love our water here in Sarasota. We can travel the intracoastal, Sarasota Bay and Gulf of Mexico to fish, explore or just enjoy the open water. You can own your boat or you can join a club to avoid the maintenance. Or you can take advantage of the many charter operations with captains that seem to know exactly where the fish are hitting. And last, but not least, you can book a dinner cruise out of Marina Jack. There are advantages to each.

Are you prepared to enjoy the open waters safely? Being confident on the rules of the road and the waterway channels of Sarasota can make the trip more enjoyable. Having the proper safety equipment onboard and knowing how to use each can save your life or pass a U.S. Coast Guard inspection with ease.

The Sarasota Power and Sail Squadron can help with an American Boating Class (ABC) that teaches the basics of boating safety. ABC certification is not required to operate a boat in Florida waters unless you were born after January 1, 1988 and operate a boat of 10 HP or more. No one under the age of 14 can legally operate a craft, and the Personal Water Craft owner can be charged by allowing an under-age boat driver. Certification is also required in several states so you may already have the proper training. Even though not required, consult your insurance agent for reduced premiums. The squadron also provides boat inspections for free. This is an inspection that is recognized by the state and the Coast Guard to certify that the boat has the proper safety equipment and EPA notifications.

So it is up to you to take advantages of these opportunities. If you are traveling from another state and consider yourself an experienced boater you are well ahead of the game. But Florida has its own laws to abide by. In addition to those above, there are laws to protect swimmers, divers and marine animals. Some of it is just common sense. Operating a boat inside an area marked for swimming doesn’t make much sense. Markers, such as those on Coquina Beach are there to warn swimmers of the danger imposed by swimming outside the markers and boaters to signal them there are swimmers on the beach.

Watch out for red flags with a diagonal white patch, these signify divers are in the area. There are laws to protect divers and three boating restrictions are important to remember. If operating on a river, through a channel or inlets you must maintain a distance of 100 feet from the dive flag. It may be flown from the boat or float that have divers in the water or may be tethered to the diver below. In open water you are required to keep a distance of 300 feet from the dive flag. The third requirement is that you slow down when approaching a dive flag.

Sailing is taught at an early age here in Sarasota
Educational Programs - Sailing lessons in Sarasota.

Save the manatees. These graceful behemoths of the seas are in the open waters of the area in summer months but head to inland waterways October through April. At these times they are in inland areas such as Crystal River in the north and make a magnificent sight when they gather by the hundreds in the warm waters near the Tampa Electric Big Bend Power Station. Their slow movements prevent them from escaping a fast moving power boat. So boaters must be aware of their presence, the most visible sign of a submerged manatee is a large swirl of water on the surface. They surface at regular intervals where the show is a wonderful display of nature but they can hold their breath for up to 20 minutes.

As manatee are protected by law, so are dolphins. They don’t migrate as manatees do and will play around your boat with a show of their own. They are either dining on small fish or entertaining you and your boat guests. Remember that it is illegal to harass or feed dolphins and manatees.

Many anglers visit Florida for its rich supply of game fish. Fishing licenses are easy to obtain through many outlets and department stores that sell tackle such as Walmart. The licenses are divided into saltwater or freshwater designations. Florida residents may qualify for a free license if you plan to fish from a shoreline or structure attached to the land such as a fishing pier. Your children under the age of 16, residents over 65 and active duty members of U.S. armed forces do not require a license. There are more exemptions for freshwater fishing, see the Florida Fish and Wildlife website for more information.

Consult current regulations on the type and size of fish, violation of these rules can be devastating. Invasive species such as lionfish or tilapia are exempt from most of these rules. You’re doing a good thing by catching these species of fish. Tarpon are very large saltwater fish but produce heavy fines if you are in possession of one. A tarpon must be released once caught and tarpon over 40 inches must remain in the water to be released. You may purchase a tag to catch and possess if you are going after an International Game Fish Association record. The state record is 243 pounds caught near Key West. Although larger tarpon have been witnessed, the official world record is one caught in 2003 off the coast of Africa at 286 pounds, nine ounces. A list of  saltwater fish and their regulations is available online at MyFWC.com.

Coquina South Boat Ramps, Bradenton Beach
The boat ramps at Coquina Beach on Anna Maria Island have recently undergone a complete makeover with more parking spaces and additional boat launches.

There are many good marinas in the area from which to dock your boat. Super-sized yacht dockage is available at the Longboat Key Club Marina and Marina Jack in Sarasota. There are many boat owners who trailer their vessels so they can be more mobile and avoid dockage fees. Nearly every city in the area has a marina park with a public boat ramp. In the Sarasota area there are boat ramps in Centennial Park downtown, on City Island in Ken Thompson Park and Turtle Beach, south of Siesta Key. There are a number of boat launches on the Manatee River in Bradenton. In Manatee County there is the Kingfish Boat Ramp in Holmes Beach and Palma Sola Causeway Boat Ramp. The Coquina Beach South Boat Ramp was recently resurfaced with more parking and ramps.

Sailboating can be rewarding and relaxing. Still care should be exercised. Sarasota Bay has some very shallow open waters that can easily be seen on a nautical chart. Download a two-week free trial of the popular Navionics Boating SmartPhone app, available for Apple or Android phones. This app provides a wealth of information for boaters including depth charts. Boats with large drafts should be concerned when navigating Big Pass south of Lido Key or New Pass on the south end of Longboat Key. The Coast Guard has issued warnings for these two inlets and have announced in March they will no longer maintain the channel markers as the shoals shift with different storms. For access to the Gulf of Mexico by sailboat, the Longboat Pass between Longboat Key and Anna Maria Island at maker 85 is consistently deeper, but still may be shallow in areas with depths of 4.5 feet. The draw-bridge there is maintained 24 hours a day and accessed on VHF channel 9.

You may be familiar with the phrase, red-right returning. This refers to the red triangular markers that show the channels, they should be on your right. The green square markers that are even numbered should be on your left when returning from the open water. But what about the intracoastal that runs from New Jersey to the Mexican border? The marker numbers will be in increasing order and the red will be on the side of largest land mass, the continental United States. Intercoastal markers should also have a yellow symbol on the marker for easier navigation. Red will be on the right when returning from a large body of water to a smaller body of water such as a marina channel.

If you don’t own a boat and still want the pleasure of open water boating there a few options for you. We can start with Marina Jack in downtown Sarasota, one of the country’s best marinas. Not to mention they have outstanding dining, they have full service for boaters. From rentals to charters, these independent contractors are experienced in the ways of boating. Reserve a relaxing sunset on the water with a dinner cruise aboard the Marina Jack II. Cannons Marina on Longboat Key also provide rental boats. There are other marinas on Anna Maria Island, Sarasota and Bradenton that offer similar services.

Marina and Moorings of the Longboat Key Club
Serving Longboat Key - Considered a safe harbor from storms, the Marina and Moorings of the Longboat Key Club provides many services. This view is from a listing at Grand Bay, click on the image for details.

The Freedom Boat Club has an office at Marina Jack. Membership will get you access to a good supply of boats for pleasure or fishing. A basic boat safety class and on-water training is provided with an initial membership application. There are locations all over the United States, where members can reserve a boat at each location. A free sailing class for members is offered and each location has one sail boat on hand. Once a member, take advantage of their area locations in Nokomis, Venice, Gulf Gate Estates and Palmetto.

Enjoy the open waters in our little slice of paradise. Please contact me at (941) 387-1840 for an exclusive showing or if you have a property to sell or buy.

 

 

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Roger Pettingell?

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About Roger Pettingell

Roger Pettingell of Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate is your Longboat Key, Florida Luxury Real Estate Specialist. Roger provides his real estate expertise to sellers, investors, developers, and buyers in the Sarasota area including Anna Maria, Bird Key, Bradenton Beach, Casey Key, Cortez, Grand Bay, Holmes Beach, Longboat Key, Marina Bay, Osprey and Siesta Key. Search for homes, luxury homes, condominiums, investment property, development property, and vacant land and lots on the Longboat Key, Florida and the surrounding area.