Ocean Properties Ltd., owner of the Resort at Longboat Key Club, announced plans Monday to expand its club footprint on the southern tip of Longboat Key.
Ocean Properties Vice President Andy Berger told the Longboat Observer Monday his company is under contract to purchase the Chart House restaurant building and adjoining plaza at 201 Gulf of Mexico Drive. The company will close on the property Oct. 8, for an undisclosed sum.
The Delray Beach-based company also owns the Longboat Key Hilton Beachfront Resort, Lido Beach Resort and Lido Beach Holiday Inn.
“It’s a strategic business decision for us,” Berger said. “It’s a no-brainer. The land abuts our property, and it makes good business sense.”
The building and property’s last recorded sale was in August 2004, when the property’s current landlord, CORE/PMG Longboat LLC, purchased the property for $5.5 million. Besides the Chart House, Exit Art and Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate reside in the adjoining plaza that sits behind New Pass. That plaza is called Chart House Shops.
Berger said the Chart House and the existing businesses have leases that the Key Club will honor. Berger was unaware of the timeframe for the leases Monday, but called them “lengthy.”
“For the immediate future, we will be a landlord, and we’re OK with that,” Berger said.
Berger said it’s too soon to discuss future plans for the property.
“We have no immediate plans,” Berger said. “The timing was simply right to acquire the property and we took advantage of it.”
The building was built in 1988 and has 18,549 square feet of interior space with views of New Pass and the Gulf.
Former Longboat Key Club General Manager Michael Welly lamented for years that the Key Club lost opportunities on at least two separate occasions to acquire the property before Loeb Partner Realty Group LLC’s tenure.
In fact, the property at 201 Gulf of Mexico Drive was always meant to be a part of the Key Club’s property when Arvida Corp. mapped out the area in the 1980s.
The Sarasota County Property Appraiser’s website lists the 130,680-square-foot piece of property as “Parcel C-2, Longboat Key Club Unit 4.”
However, the property has housed a Chart House restaurant and other businesses since 1989, when the building received its certificate of occupancy.
Coldwell Banker Longboat Key broker associate Roger Pettingell, who has an office at the location, called the site “a terrific one.”
Pettingell, who has witnessed and helped broker several real-estate deals on the property since Arvida acquired it, said he can glance out his window at any time of the day and spot a dolphin or a manatee.
“A former Arvida official once told me that the (Chart House) restaurant’s bar was going to be a great place to sit down, map out this area and do real-estate deals,” Pettingell said. “He was right.”