7 Luxurious Additions to Make to Your Colony Home

When you live in one of the gorgeous Colony homes, you’ve got the best of the best. Colony homes in Bonita Springs offer exceptional amenities and options for every taste. However, making your home truly yours is something every homeowner seeks. Putting your personal touch on your space can make your condo go from a Colony model to your home.

We have a list of seven luxurious additions that can accommodate your needs and really make your home a reflection of you. Read on to discover what luxurious additions you can add!

1. Wine Closet

Who doesn’t love a glass of wine?! After all, indulging in a glass of red wine daily can provide a number of health benefits. If you’re a wine connoisseur, keep your wine at your fingertips and stored properly in a custom wine closet. To create a true wine closet, you’ll want to make sure that you can control the temperature and humidity, as well as storing it away from UV light (this is what makes converting a closet an ideal location). You can create this yourself or hire a contractor to make your vision a reality. Houzz offers step-by-step instructions and images of some spectacular in-home wine closets that would be a perfect fit inside any Colony home. If wine isn’t your thing, there are number of other luxury options you can add to your home, so keep reading!

In-Home Theatre

An in-home theatre is a perfect addition to take advantage of rainy days or when you just need a time-out from the sun. Cuddling up on theatre style seating complete with top of the line audio and video can take simply watching a movie to a supreme theatre experience. This addition is also great for a night in with friends — catch up on the latest blockbuster hits, watch the classics, or even relive a time in your past by watching a home movie with the best quality sound and video. Nothing quite matches the rumble as you feel part of the action in your favorite action flick. You can create an in-home theatre environment by including video projection, premium sound, dimming lights, and the theatre seating of your choice. If you’re making it an entertainment space, elevate the back row for a true in-home movie-going experience!

Heated Floors

All Floridians know that the winter in Florida can still put a chill in the air. Despite the normally warm climate, rainy days in January can still make you close up the lanai and crank up the heat. And nothing beats getting out of a shower or bath and stepping out onto a warm floor! Whether you choose to install heated flooring in just your bathroom or throughout your Colony home, heating flooring is beneficial not just from a luxury standpoint — it also can help you feel comfortable and warm. Living in comfort is certainly a must-have!

Towel Warmer

Speaking of comfort, adding a towel warmer will give you that warm, just out of the dryer feeling every time you step out of the shower or bath. Pamper yourself with a towel warmer that reflects your personality — there are a variety of styles to choose from. You can have a free-standing towel warmer, one hardwired and installed in the wall, or you can even have a tucked away towel warming drawer. For open towel warmers, you can add in a modern flair or keep it classic looking. There really is an option for everyone!

Kitchen Improvements

From upgrading your entire kitchen to a chef’s kitchen or adding in simple luxuries, kitchen upgrades are sure to please everyone. Gourmet kitchens are an excellent option for those who enjoy cooking, but if you don’t plan on cooking large meals regularly, these features will surely be a waste of money. Opt for the upgrades you know you’ll use, like a touchless water faucet or flush countertop steamer. Your kitchen is also an excellent place to display your natural side. Install eco-friendly features like bamboo flooring or countertops or cork flooring and help out the environment while making a statement. If you don’t want to scream green, you can still upgrade your appliances (if they aren’t energy efficient already) or add in a recycling center conveniently into your existing cabinets.

Wireless Home Automation

Wireless home automation might be an improvement for the tech-savvy homeowners, but it really can be a benefit for everyone. Most of these systems are quite user-friendly, so even the technically challenged can find it’s a breeze to use. Wireless home automation allows you to control everything in your home from a smartphone or tablet. This is a phenomenal feature, especially for Colony residents who like to travel and want to check in on their home while they’re away. You can also just install the parts that matter most, like smart thermostats, and reap in the benefits of being energy efficient, or you can make your outlets and switches wirelessly controlled. The options are really endless, and this is also a great feature to add to your home theatre.

Details! Feature Lighting & Hardware

Your hardware and lighting choices are simple details that are often overlooked. You can really show off your personality in a subtle way by incorporating lighting fixtures and hardware that echo your sense of style. For example, the kitchen is an excellent place to install feature lighting to show off your dishes or illuminate your latest cooking creation. Additionally, knobs, pulls, and handles are everywhere in your home and offer the perfect opportunity for you to incorporate a touch of you. Selecting high-end, yet classic hardware can show a refined taste. Or, if you’re more whimsical, splurge on exciting or fun pulls, like silverware in the kitchen, etc. This is your chance to show off your style, whether it’s modern, traditional, luxe, or minimal! You’ll be amazed at what a big difference such a small touch can do!

Make a House a Home

At the end of the day, your home in the Colony should be just that — your home.  Make additions to your home to personalize it, increase comfort, and make you happy. By adding luxurious items like the above, we hope you’ll find that your home is your happy place. After all, nothing beats easy living! Which items will you be adding?

Best Places for Brunch in Bonita Springs

As summer approaches, it’s time to wind down and cool off. What better way to relax in paradise than enjoying a nice summer Sunday brunch? Southwest Florida boasts some of the finest restaurants, and I’ve put together my top choices for the best brunch places in Bonita Springs.

Angelina’s Ristorante

Hours: Sundays, 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Location: 24041 U.S. 41 S., Bonita Springs, FL

Contact (239) 390-3187

You may already know and love Angelina’s for its fantastic upscale dinner options, but did you know their brunch is just as good? Angelina’s offers a buffet style Sunday brunch with an assortment of delectable options, including frittatas topped with parmesan, spinach and tomato, as well as a variety of meats, cheeses, marinated vegetables, fresh fruit, and desserts. With unlimited champagne, mimosas, and Bloody Mary’s, this is an adult brunch, you just can’t miss!

Survey Café

Hours: Sundays, 8 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Location: 10530 Wilson St., Bonita Springs, FL

Contact: (239) 992-2233

The Survey Café offers more than just delicious food. This historic house turned café is an excellent place to meet friends for a brunch with a Southern flair. The simple menu options are made with only the freshest ingredients. Though the specials are always changing, ongoing menu options include a variety of breakfast choices, sandwiches, soups, salads, and classic French baguette sandwiches.

Tarpon Bay

Hours: Sundays, 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Location: 5001 Coconut Road, Bonita Springs, FL (Hyatt Regency Coconut Point)

Contact: (239) 390-4295

Tarpon Bay’s Sunday Brunch is another great option for those who are looking to treat themselves to an extravagant brunch buffet. This brunch includes complimentary champagne, mimosas, and belinis, as well as live music entertainment. Menu options include classic items like stuffed French toast and cage-free egg omelet, as well as surf and turf entrees for those with an appetite! If you plan on enjoying Tarpon Bay’s Sunday brunch, you should make a reservation because this popular brunch tends to sell out!

Enjoy Sunday Brunch in Bonita Springs Every Sunday

Bonita Springs is a luxury location that offers plenty of dining and entertainment options for year-round and seasonal residents alike. If you want to purchase your next home in the Bonita Springs area, contact Jill Kushner. Jill is an experienced real estate professional who has been working in the area since 1984. She specializes in helping people find the perfect homes in The Colony. What are you waiting for? Find your own little piece of paradise in Bonita Springs today!

Thanksgiving Entertaining Ideas

For anyone who has hosted Thanksgiving dinner at his or her home before, it can be a stressful undertaking.  Whether you’re hosting it at your home in Florida or at your northern residence, expectations are high. The food has to be great, the table should look beautiful and you still have to find time to entertain your guests. Well don’t fret! Here are some steps to help you work out the details of both your meal, and the holiday table. The only thing this won’t do is stop giving you nightmares about forgetting to defrost the turkey in time.

Make a Plan

  • Something that has always worked for me is finalizing the menu well in advance. That way you know what you’re going to be serving.
  • If you want to try new recipes, perhaps only do one or two. Have a dry run of the new recipes before the day to reduce any surprises and to see if the recipe is going to be a good match.
  • Another great idea is creating a timetable of the things that need to be done on Thanksgiving Day. I’ve been at gatherings before where the host doesn’t really know when dinner will be served. Hours go by and guests start to get grumpy. So for starters, determine what time you want to sit down to eat and work from there.
  • Identify what needs to be done and at what time.
  • Prepare your grocery list ahead of time. There’s nothing like getting home after grocery shopping and realizing you forgot a key ingredient for the meal. Instead of having to call someone last minute and asking “can you pick up a few more sweet potatoes on the way over?” make sure you go through your recipes and write everything down. And above all, don’t forget the turkey!

Arrange Your Table

An attractive table requires giving a little forethought to individual place settings, serving pieces, and flower arrangements. I typically like going online or even on Pinterest to get some ideas on how to arrange my Thanksgiving table. I’ve gathered some quick links that may provide some inspiration.

Day of: Don’t Stress

  • Try cooking in advance of the big day. Start preparing desserts and side dishes a few days before Thanksgiving if you can. This will help you space out the holiday cooking and keep you from getting worn out.
  • Assign people tasks – have someone in charge of drinks, another for taking the food to the table, someone for cleaning up, etc. Remember, you should enjoy this day too.

Give Thanks and Dig In!

After all the planning, prepping, and stressing, this day is about giving thanks and being with family and friends. So raise your glass, give a toast, enjoy yourself amongst your guests – and enjoy the feast you just created!

Now, for those of you who prefer dining out on Thanksgiving, The Colony Golf & Country Club hosts a Thanksgiving buffet that is sure to make your mouth water. Arrive hungry, leave satiated. From 1-4 p.m. you are your family will enjoy a variety of delicious food from golden roasted turkey with traditional cranberry sauce and mashed potatoes to oven-seared tenderloin of beef and cavatelli pasta Provencal. Best of all you don’t have to clean up after the feast! For reservations call 239-390-4702.

Have any other entertaining ideas you’d like to share? Leave your comments.

I wish all of you as well as my Colony friends a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Uncovering your Dream Home in Bonita Springs, Florida


Searching for a new or second home is easier once you understand what’s most important to you. I always tell clients who are considering moving to The Colony Golf & Bay Club that it’s best to organize your thoughts by writing down what you absolutely need in a new or second home, and what you don’t. After all, buying a home whether it be here at The Colony in Florida or elsewhere, is a huge decision. Here’s a good list to help you narrow down your decisions:

Look at the Community

  • Variety of architectural styles (vs. cookie cutter homes)
  • Natural lush landscaping
  • Walking and biking trails
  • Amenities like golf, tennis, and swimming
  • Activities and social events
  • Sense of community
  • People my age

Look at the Location

  • Beach access
  • Quick drive to shopping and dining
  • Access to theater, museums, and nightlife
  • Proximity to airports and public transportation
  • Quality school system (for families)

Determine the type of Home Structure

  • Single family or high-rise home
  • One- or two-car garage
  • Home office
  • Guest bedroom/bath
  • Formal living room
  • Eat-in kitchen
  • Patio or lanai
  • Bonus room

Think about Your Living Style

  • Low maintenance (high-rise homes)
  • Private land for tending a garden, making home improvements (single-family homes)
  • Gourmet appliances
  • Outdoor living area
  • View (Gulf of Mexico, natural preserve or Golf Course)
  • Light and bright
  • Lots of shade
  • Onsite amenities without leaving your home

I’d love to take you on a tour of The Colony, so feel free to contact me today. Happy Dream Home Hunting!

All About Bonita Springs, Florida!

Named after a local medicinal spring, Bonita Springs history began in the 1870’s when surveyors working for the United States Government explored the Southwest Florida region. Originally named “Survey,” huge plantations were established to grow pineapples, bananas and a variety of tropical fruits.

Then in 1912 a man from Tennessee made plans to expand the town of Survey. He decided the name wouldn’t entice people to move to the area so the name was changed to Bonita Springs.

I don’t think people needed a name to entice them. After all Bonita Springs is one of Southwest Florida’s fastest growing cities, due in large part to its location between Naples and Fort Myers. Bonita Springs is a welcoming beach community that offers a lifestyle for just about everyone. From award winning planned golf communities to serene waterfront living, Bonita Springs exudes an urban setting with small-town charm.

If you’re living here seasonally enjoying the retirement lifestyle, or simply on vacation, there’s an abundance of things to do.

Beaches. People from all over the world flock to Bonita Springs’ pristine shoreline, which includes Bonita Beach, Lovers Key and Barefoot beach. The backdrop of the Gulf of Mexico will keep you wide-eyed along with its white sands, great shelling, dolphin sightings, and turtle nesting grounds. Swimmers, snorkelers, rafters, kayakers, and windsurfers will appreciate the aquamarine waters just steps away.

Shopping and Dining. Shop and dine to your hearts content here in Bonita Springs. There’s something to suite every taste. Choose from a plethora of shopping choices from outdoor malls to boutique shops. Enjoy casual dining or fine dining – all just minutes away!

Family Fun. While the beaches will keep kids and parents content for hours, there are also a variety of attractions to take the children or visiting grandchildren to. Whether it’s going to a water park, visiting the zoo, or heading to the museum, you’ll never run out of ideas or places to go in Bonita Springs or the nearby area.

Here’s some helpful information to keep handy if you’re visiting the area, or moving to the area for the season:

  • Obtaining a Bonita Springs Parking Sticker: Parks and Recreation,
26740 Pine Avenue,
 Bonita Springs, FL, 34135
(239) 992-2556. You will need property tax bill, Car or Truck Registration and Driver’s License Address must match on all. The parking decal you have acquired will allow you parking at Bonita Beach Park, Access #1 and Little Hickory Island Beach Park only. Parking availability is not guaranteed.
  • Fishing Licenses: 
(239) 533-6000; Instant License Line
(888) 347-4356
  • Boat Ramps: The Imperial River Boat Ramp in Bonita Springs,
(239) 229-0459
  • Major Ports/Waterways: Port Boca Grande (Gulf) and Okeechobee Waterway (coast to coast through Lake Okeechobee).
  • Bonita Springs Fire Control & Rescue: (239) 949-6200
  • Lee County Office of the Sheriff: Emergency 911 or (239) 477-1000
  • Bonita Springs Public Library: (239) 992-0101
  • Lee Memorial Health System: (239) 466-4455
  • Lee County DMV Offices & Services: Your Lee County DMV offices provide vehicle registration, drivers licenses, ID cards, tag and title services for cars, trucks, trailers, vessels and mobile homes.

 

At Your Service: Concierge Service at The Colony Golf & Bay Club.

Located in Bonita Springs, Florida, the Colony Golf & Bay Club is a private, gated luxury community. One of the many reasons I enjoy listing exclusively for this community is due to the vast array of amenities The Colony offers its single-family, mid-rise and high-rise residents.

In addition to the 18-hole championship golf course and Country Club, residents here can enjoy tennis, private dining at The Bay Club, as well as a fitness center to help members remain active. There is also a spa available to community members and their guests where they can be pampered, as well as a canoe park and private water taxi to The Colony’s beach park.

However, one of the great perks and an amenity I feel surpasses all other communities in Bonita Springs, Florida, is the concierge service.

The concierge can help with a slew of daily tasks such as housecleaning, home repairs, indoor plant care, pool maintenance, landscaping and pest control.

For those who live here seasonally (aka ‘snowbirds’), the concierge can help organize an absentee home watch, key holding and seasonal arrival and departure preparations. Residents traveling can ask the concierge for assistance with both local and international travel, as well as to help set up an airport shuttle. If you desire, the concierge will also find a personal trainer or in-home masseuse.

Residents at The Colony Golf & Bay Club enjoy the hassle-free lifestyle that enables them to spend their days enjoying the many other activities available in Bonita Springs, Naples and surrounding areas. And yes, the concierge can help organize all those other activities as well!

Contact me today for your tour of The Colony.

From Yoga Classes to Private Wine Lockers: The Amenities of Master-Planned Communities.

ed-wine-glass-and-bottleFlorida’s master-planned community scene is definitely competitive. There are an abundance of single-family homes, high-rise condominiums and villa homes targeting the first, second and even third home buyer. This means that developers must offer luxurious community and high-rise building amenities in order to separate themselves from the pack.

Most communities have fitness centers, but some of new communities or high-rise condominium towers now offer trendier fitness options like yoga and Pilates classes, or even indoor resistance pools for aquatic workouts.

Theater rooms are another trend in more urban cities, yet have been popular here in Southwest Florida for years now. All of the high-rise towers at The Colony Golf & Bay Club offer this type of entertainment in addition to having a bar, catering kitchen and even a billiards area.

One of the newest trends in community amenities, which is gaining popularity, are private climate-controlled wine lockers for residents. For instance, The Colony Golf & Bay Club’s private dining facility, The Bay Club, offers residents the opportunity to store up to 18 bottles of their favorite wine at a lesser price than what a restaurant would offer – if they even offered it. This makes going out to dinner at the Club even more affordable for Colony residents, plus they can enjoy a bottle of wine from their own private collection. Now that’s a great perk!

What amenities do you look for when purchasing a home?

Five Great Reasons To Buy a High-Rise Condominium

I only list property at The Colony Golf & Bay Club. Why? I love the community, as well as the residents I’ve come to know over the years. While the amenities are to die for here, one of the unique aspects are the high-rise towers that adorn the skyline. High-rise living is certainly not for everyone, but the high-rise towers at The Colony may help change the mind of the most scrutinizing homebuyer out there.

Here are a few of the advantages of high-rise living at The Colony:

Lower Maintenance. Living in a high-rise offers freedom from many tasks and routine maintenance chores. No more spending a Saturday afternoon taking care of your lawn or pool. High-rise condominiums at The Colony have exterior maintenance and lush, well-designed landscaping that is maintained by the building. This means high-rise buyers are able to find other ways to spend their newly found leisure time!

Access to amazing amenities. Colony’s high-rise buildings have their own state-of-the-art fitness centers, business centers, secure parking, swimming pools, theater rooms, private elevators and guest suites. Plus residents also have access to the community’s amenities that include a Golf Club, private dining facility, tennis courts, and 18-hole golf course. You never have to leave the community!

Social events and a sense of community. Colony high-rise residents love being social. Not only does the community itself have a plethora of social events, but so do each tower. From happy hours and movie night, to holiday gatherings and seasonal events, residents enjoy the sense of community offered with this lifestyle. It provides a great way to get to know your neighbors in a relaxed setting.

Location, Location, Location. With all of the choices in dining, entertainment and shopping just an elevator ride and a short drive away, the Colony places you in the center of where you want to be.

Picturesque Setting. The Colony’s high-rise towers provide breathtaking views of The Gulf of Mexico, Estero Bay or natural preserves, not something you get when you purchase a single-family residence. Watch sunset from the seclusion of your own balcony.

Are you ready to buy a high-rise home? Contact me today for a tour of The Colony Golf & Bay Club.

Second Home Buyers & Retirees: Why buying a home in a community with Amenities is important.

Naples and Bonita Springs, Florida are rich with gated communities. A well-planned community offers a variety of housing choices, and of course, amenities.

But how do you decide which community is right for you? I always tell clients I work with that price, floor plan and location are important, but so are the community’s amenities.

To help you through the process, here are some of the main benefits you should look for when looking for a second home or seasonal retirement home within a gated community:

Architectural integrity – A planned community incorporates master architectural guidelines for the homes, which ensures that neighborhoods have a unified theme with enough variations to complement one another. In other words, it’s not cookie cutter. The Colony’s high-rise towers, mid-rises and custom single-family homes were built with the highest standards of design aesthetic and quality.

Amenities to enhance quality of life – Master-planned communities offer homes or high-rise condo’s that don’t require much maintenance coupled with amenities that make it easy to enjoy free time with friends and neighbors. Amenities will vary by community and may include golf, tennis, a Country Club, dining, social events, and canoe park just to name a few.

Sense of community – Many master-planned communities have these on-site amenities to make life’s daily activities easy and convenient. These amenities help to foster a strong sense of community, since fellow residents get to know one another through neighborhood activities and events.

The residents of the Colony Golf & Bay Club have a host of amazing amenities at their fingertips. Best part is, they don’t have to sacrifice space by settling on a smaller floor plan. The high-rises and single-family homes at The Colony offer spacious, open floor plans perfect for guests or entertaining, plus high ceilings, state-of-the-art appliances and custom cabinetry to reflect their individual personality.

Are you looking for a second home or seasonal home? Contact me today!

Dining out tonight? Try one of these Bonita Springs and Naples Restaurants.

Bonita Springs and Naples, Florida have a slew of great restaurants to satisfy every appetite. Here are a few of my favorite casual and relaxed dining establishments. 

Bonita Springs, Florida:

Naples, Florida:

What are your favorite casual-dining restaurants in Bonita Springs and Naples, Florida? Share them here.