Cresswind offers 19 models to the active adult community in Lakewood Ranch.
David Langhout, Kolter Homes' vice president of Southwest Florida, might not be able to fully explain why Lakewood Ranch doesn't offer more 55-and-above communities, but he is more than willing to take advantage of the good fortune.
Kolter Homes' Cresswind development opened 10 model homes to the community Oct. 18, which also signaled the start of the 22nd annual Tour of Homes in Lakewood Ranch. The Tour of Homes, which features 17 actively selling villages, including three new neighborhoods — Cresswind (55-and-above), The Palisades (Freedom Homes) and Woodleaf Hammock (featuring N/I Homes and Meritage Homes).
"It is surprising there isn't more of this demographic, which this area always has attracted," said Langhout, noting that Cresswind joined Del Webb as the only 55-plus homes in the Lakewood Ranch market. "And Lakewood Ranch has been the 800-pound gorilla in the Sarasota-Manatee market. Lakewood Ranch comes at a premium."
Langhout said it is a premium for both builders and buyers. He said it was a perfect choice for Cresswind because the roads, utilities and other infrastructure all were in place before construction began. And since Langhout said Kolter Homes isn't the bargain basement end of the industry, Lakewood Ranch's discriminating buyers are a good fit for the homes since they are willing to pay for high-quality products.
More than 300 people toured Cresswind's models the opening weekend despite the rain. The price point for Cresswind, which offers 19 models, begins at $297,900 for the Casey model and runs through the $517,900 Rosemary (with bonus) model. The least expensive of the 10 models ready for viewing is the $312,900 Lido model that is 1,675 square feet. Cresswind has 2-, 3-, and 4-bedroom models and the square footage runs from the Casey's 1,515 square feet to the Alys at 4,424 feet.
Each model is built with senior lifestyle in mind and Langhout said that is reflected in beach entry showers which ramp downward into the shower along with very few steps to get into the home. He said seniors appreciate seeing "sunlight and water" and the homes have been built with that in mind.
He said Cresswind will put great emphasis on providing amenities for an active adult community. Construction on a $7 million, 13,000-square-foot clubhouse begins this week. A lifestyle director, to organize events and activities, will be hired when the first homes close.
"First and foremost, this is about lifestyle," he said.
The community will be 648 homes, which Langhout said is smaller and intimate when compared to 55-and-above communities. The streetscapes will be wider than normal with 10-foot sidewalks on one side and 6-foot sidewalks on the other to encourage walking.
Kolter Homes has eight Cresswind communities, including three in Florida and the rest in the Southeast.
The Tour of Homes runs through Nov. 17 and features a variety of events besides the home tours.
“Tour of Homes is more than an ‘open house’-type event, in that it gives visitors insight into what life is actually like at The Ranch,” said Laura Cole, senior vice president of LWR Communities in a release. “Through a wide variety of both day and evening events for people of all ages and interests, twice-weekly bus tours, and model viewings in the different neighborhoods, guests get to experience what day-to-day life is like here."
The Tour of Homes guide, which includes an event guide and a map, can be picked up at the new Lakewood Ranch Information Center, 8130 Lakewood Main Street. The information center and models are open daily, Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from noon until 5 p.m.
The schedule for Tour of Homes can be found at lwrtourofhomes.com.
Taking photo with Don Mihalik Vilano home.