For a mere $22 million, new Longboat Key beachfront estate can be yours

HERALD STAFF REPORTDecember 19, 2013 

LONGBOAT KEY -- A nearly 3-acre Gulf-front estate has been listed for sale at a scale-tipping $22 million, Michael Saunders & Co. announced Wednesday.

The property's list price is the highest on record for a residential property in the Bradenton-Sarasota-Northport market, the company noted.

Ohana, the new beachfront compound at 6633 Gulf of Mexico Drive, was designed by Sarasota modernist architect Guy Peterson and built by Michael K. Walker & Associates. Landscape architect Raymond Jungles of Miami included more than 60 varieties of tropical foliage.

The seaside compound is being compared to a private, all-inclusive South Seas resort with the added protection of a hardened shoreline with seawall--one of only two such structures on the island for private residences.

Deborah Beacham, an agent in the Michael Saunders' Longboat Key South office, has the listing.

"Ohana" is the Hawaiian word for "a place of family, laughter and sharing."

"Today's buyers are all searching for meaningful experiences," company founder and CEO Michael Saunders told the Herald on Wednesday. "Ohana provides the ultimate experience by offering a totally private, self-contained resort with the finest architecture and detailing, creating the perfect spot for a couple, extended family, or those who enjoy entertaining large gatherings."

The compound includes three pavilions --a guest, main and master -- with almost 10,000 square feet of living space with six bedrooms, seven full baths and two half baths. There is a separate beachfront guest house, a large free-form swimming pool with a beach pavilion, a motor court and a tennis court, with total square footage of the compound topping 36,000 square feet.

"The setting is unparalleled," Saunders said. "A private, tropically landscaped oasis with magnificent sunset and sweeping beach views are nature's way of embracing you at Ohana.

"Having grown up nearby," she noted, "I can vouch for the fact that many of my most lasting memories and lifelong friendships were forged along the same magnificent stretch of beach."

Comparable waterfront estates routinely sell for even more in Naples, Palm Beach and Miami, according to the real estate agent. "Buyers in this price tier might have once gravitated to Palm Beach or Naples," says Beacham, who is recognized as one of Southwest Florida's waterfront specialists. "Sarasota's worldwide reputation as a small but significant hub for the arts, culture, recreation and international sports tourism has propelled it into the same league as these other Florida markets."

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