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Sarasota skyline changing with luxury condos

Posted on September 29, 2014 | Read time: 3 minutes

Realtors say there are great deals for the location and views. City officials say Sarasota’s skyline is changing.

Sarasota, Florida – The real estate market in Downtown Sarasota is rising… literally, with 18-story high rises of luxury condos, affordable for the wealthy.

With shovels in hand, Sarasota city and county commissioners — along with developers — break ground on what many call downtown Sarasota’s Crown Jewel: The Vue, 141 units of waterfront luxury living.

“Through these glass walls, you’ll see this view of Sarasota Bay, the skyline, barrier islands and the gulf,” describes Lisa Morris, Sales Executive for The Vue.

Michael Saunders and Company’s sales gallery shows what less than a million dollars can buy. The gallery showcases a full size kitchen…

“All standard finishes are very high end luxury finished,” explains Morris.

According to Morris, every condo has a great view, “It’s a modern, clean open-look to maximize the enjoyment of the water view.”

Units run from $800,000 to $2 million on average, with the penthouse topping $3 million. So far, 43 of 141 residences — or a third — have already sold.

Click here to learn more about The Vue

“This year, as we move into 2015, will be the story of luxury. It’s luxury buyers driving the year to year growth,” says Drayton Saunders, President of Michael Saunders & Company, a licensed real estate broker.

Saunders says just look around downtown… the construction cranes are a sign of what’s to come.

Seven of 20 planned projects, totaling $352 million are underway. There’s the One Palm; it includes the Aloft hotel with apartments. The Jewel, 18 stories of luxury condos, sold out pre-construction. The Q will likely be finished first. The Vue will also have a luxury hotel, The Westin.

Saunders says, “It really is the rebirth of people discovering Sarasota. It’s always had a unique combination of urban environment with that relaxed atmosphere of a small town with cultural amenities.”

Such as the Sarasota Ballet and the Sarasota Opera House, key parts of Sarasota’s performing arts community.

When completed, downtown Sarasota will have 1,143 luxury hotel rooms and 2,037 new luxury condos like The Vue, with spectacular views of the city.

Saunders say, “I don’t think we are overbuilding or building too fast. We’re catching up to the demand that’s very deep in Florida, particularly in Sarasota.”

Norman Gollub, Downtown Economic Development Coordinator for Sarasota says there are $350 million in additional projects being considered.

“There is a lot of vibrancy downtown. I think we will continue to see the face of Downtown Sarasota change, hopefully for the better.”

The city’s projects include revitalizing North Sarasota’s Rosemary District with more affordable housing. The Rosemary District projects include more than 450 rental apartments, 32 townhomes plus 30,000 square feet in retail and office space, all within walking distance of downtown.

Gollub says, “I think we will see the younger population move in as the Rosemary District develops. Once you have a diverse population, we’ll be able to attract diverse retailers as well.

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