Informational Articles

Blu Smoke Island Grill on Siesta Key

By | August 13, 2011

Siesta Key Village has many eateries to choose from; we recently decided to try Blu Smoke Island Grill for the first time. As we walked up to the restaurant, the delicious smells flowed from the large outdoor dining area. We were early to meet our clients so we had a drink at the bar. The bar area is comfortable with relaxing blue lighting, live music and a friendly bartender.

Once our clients arrived we sat down and studied the menu which had many items to choose from. The mouth-watering cuisine features steaks, seafood, chops and fowl all slow cooked over hickory and applewood. We had burgers and salads and both were delicious. Our service was excellent and the atmosphere was relaxing.

We will definitely return to Blu Smoke. Check them out…you’ll be glad you did!

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“Shop for a Cause” at Macy’s in Sarasota

By | August 11, 2011

On Saturday, August 27, 2011, Macy’s will host its 6th annual “Shop for a Cause” benefiting charities nationwide. The Riverview High School (RHS) Foundation will be selling tickets for $5 each. When you shop with these tickets on that date you will receive 25% off on all regular, sale and clearance merchandise throughout the store. And, you will be eligible to win a $500 gift card, no purchase necessary.

To purchase tickets contact any RHS Foundation member or visit their website at This is a great way to support our local school while getting some big savings!

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RE/MAX Ranks Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Both Home Buyers and Home Sellers

By | August 4, 2011

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.: 27 July 2011 — Although conditions in the real estate market point to the continued existence of a buyers’ market, home buyers indicate they are less satisfied with real estate company services, compared with 2010, while home-seller satisfaction has improved during the same time period, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 Home Buyer/Seller StudySM released today.

The study, now in its fourth year, measures customer satisfaction of home buyers and sellers with the largest national real estate companies. Overall satisfaction is determined by examining three factors of the home-buying experience: agent/salesperson; office; and variety of additional services. Four factors are examined for the home-selling experience: agent/salesperson; marketing; office; and variety of additional services.

Click here to view the full press release:


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New Waterfront Dining in Bradenton

By | July 23, 2011

We were happy to discover a new restaurant located right on the bank of the Manatee River in Bradenton. Tarpon Pointe Grill & Tiki Bar has just been open a couple of weeks but judging by the crowd last night, people have already discovered this great spot for dining or just having a drink.

There is a dining area under cover with tables around a large bar as well as outside tables with umbrellas. Almost all of the seats have a view of the water. They are well prepared if the occasional rain shower rolls in as the restaurant has roll down plastic walls with windows to keep you dry. Even in the heat of the afternoon we were kept cool with the many fans fitted with misters. 

They are open for lunch and dinner and the menu has lots of variety so there is something for everyone. During happy hour (3-6pm) there are drink specials and bar bites at very reasonable prices. The atmosphere is very relaxed…it was like being on vacation for an afternoon!

Adjacent to the restaurant is a thatched roof tiki hut with another bar and lots of seating. They maximized the water views with bar/railing and stools all along the riverfront. If you’re up for an activity, there is a sand volleyball court and they have “cornhole” games set up between the restaurant and bar. And for the sports fan there are a number of big screen tv’s mounted in the tiki hut. Live bands perform every evening. It’s just a fun place so check it out if you’re in the area…you won’t be disappointed!

The location is just north of SR64 (aka Manatee Avenue) on 7th Street East next to the Manatee Landings Marina. If you prefer to come by boat they are at MM24 and have plenty of docking space.



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Cafe Palm

By | July 22, 2011

I have visited Cafe Palm/Media on Main on two occasions. As you may know, I’m a realtor and share an office with two other real estate agents. On that particular day, our space had begun to sound more like the drug induced throes of a Lady Gaga concert than an office with three civilized human beings making business calls. I had no choice but to snatch up my laptop and head for the hills. I needed a place to abuse carbs AND pimp houses (aka network) in a somewhat efficient manner. I had been meaning to visit Cafe Palm / Media on Main for a while. I had this fantasy that it was the type of place that the local “ladies of leisure” might spend their time…you know, sculpted cheekbones and perky lips in tennis skirts, sipping on champaigne and noshing on fresh fruit. Maybe you are one of these ladies, hmm? I’m not mocking you, I’m just jealous. Anyway, I was eager to pretend for an hour or so.

The menu was eclectic and quite frou frou enough to differentiate Cafe Palm from some run of the mill breakfast/lunch place. I opted for the Silicon Valley “Handheld,” which for 10 bucks was a little bit steep for a sandwich. Good thing it wasn’t called a sandwich or I might have thrown the menu into the street and walked right out. Delectable turkey breast, carmelized onions, avocado, and a tasty garlic spread were nestled between two warm pieces of heavenly flatbread. It was fancy and it was darned good. Next time I’m dying for a fancy sandwich, you know where I’m going.

On my second trip I opted for the daily special, which was a chipotle chicken crepe with potatoes, red pepppers, three cheeses, some kind of magical sauce, and pico de gallo. It was good but not great. I figured out that they must have the crepes and the stuffings pre-made so that they can easily fold it up and nuke it. It wasn’t hot, and it was out on my table faster than anybody could have made it. Still, though, it was really quite good, as far as suspected-microwaved meals go. In the future, however, if I’m in the market for really tasty crepes I’ll march a few blocks up to C’est La Vie. There really is no point in eating a crepe anywhere else in Sarasota.

All in all, my excursion was a success. I had a fancy sandwich, did my best to look “leisurely” while sipping my coffee, and got a little bit of business done in the process. As I gathered up my things, those ladies had no idea I was heading back to the office. I’m pretty sure they thought I was headed to the spa.

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Summer: Siesta Key Style

By | July 14, 2011

As a Siesta Key Village resident for the summer we have fully immersed outselves in the Key lifestyle. Morning strolls, the beach in the afternoon, all followed by a walk to the magical sunset has been our daily pattern.

Our teenage sons have found the Key routine as well. Each morning we head to CB’s Saltwater Outfitters to get bait for their morning fishing. They head out to the old fishing pier each morning and return several hours later with tales to tell of the folks they met and a detailed report of the morning catches. A quick bite for lunch at the Pita Pit and a lazy summer day nap fills their afternoon. As soon as the first hint of dusk arrives, they load up gear for sunset fishing. They again gather at the pier with fellow fishermen and take in the beautiful evening. After the sun goes down they come home to drop their poles and head to what has become a nightly routine of ice cream at Big Olaf’s, a Siesta Key tradition.

All of us truly understand why people from all over the world travel to Siesta Key to vacation and make memories!

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Sarasota Real Estate Sales for June

By | July 12, 2011

The Sarasota Association of Realtors report the real estate market continues healthy sales in June 2011!

Members of the Sarasota Association of Realtors® continued to sell properties at a brisk pace in June 2011 with 728 total transactions recorded last month. This marks the fourth month in the last 12 with sales exceeding the 700 level – all occurring in 2011. In addition, the median sales price for single family homes hit the highest level since last June, and the total inventory of available properties dropped to the lowest level in more than a decade, which could spur stronger competition for homes and condos.

“It is encouraging to see how the Sarasota market has continued this strong momentum in the face of continuing weakness in the national and state economies,” said SAR President Michael Bruno. “The inventory of available properties, which is lower than it has been since the 1990s, is a very important statistic. Historically, prices rise as competition for homes increases, and we’re seeing that occurring in our market. The percentage of distressed property sales is stabilizing, so prices should naturally continue to rise.”

To view the complete report with statistical information visit:

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American Pickers Visit Sarasota

By | June 10, 2011

Everyone’s favorite history buffs recently came to sunny Sarasota to pick the Big Cat Sanctuary and Ringling Bros. circus stuff from a collector who’s been collecting for 60 years!
Click Here To Watch The Full Episode of American Pickers on the History Channel:  American Pickers Visit Sarasota

(… in related news, see how this Booker High wrestler trains for matches: with his furry 400-pound friends :)

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By | June 7, 2011

Lifestyle Magazine features contemporary art, artists, galleries and art festivals. In the May (Summer Issue) just released the top 25 small artistic cities were revealed.

Sarasota FL, having long been known as a cultural destination, has climbed from the 2010 No.11 position to the No.5 spot this year!

Just another “great” reason to call Sarasota, FL home.

For more information and to sign up for a “Free” American Style Newsletter visit:
American Style Magazine

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Rothenbach Park

By | June 3, 2011

Rothenbach Park (about 3 miles east of the interstate on Bee Ridge Road) is no dump… that is to say, it’s not a dump anymore :) Touted as one of Sarasota’s greenest parks, Rothenback Park sits on the site of what was once the Sarasota County Landfill, now capped and landscaped into gorgeous open vistas, bike paths under old-growth oak canopies, and family picnic and playground areas.

Like most of Sarasota’s parks, Rothenbach park is designed with both families and adults in mind. There are two great playgrounds for the kids, clean-and-green pavilions for lunchtime, and approximately five miles of paved recreational trails that meander through the oaks.

Park Map

Rothenbach Park was founded on the principle trash can be turned into treasure. All the materials used in the park are environmentally friendly and designed with nature in mind. The park is quiet, beautiful, and easy accessible by the public.

The park is also home to the Sarasota R/C squadron, a cadre of remote-controlled airplane enthusiasts. This squadron is a private club, but for the reasonable fee of just $75 a year, you can join the fun and games and fly to your heart’s content.

Oh, and make sure you keep an eye out for the Rothenbach Park deer while you’re here – they’re famous!

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