Norman Love goes to the Emmy’s

Gulfshore Business Daily is reporting that our local chocolatier, Norman Love, was featured in the gift bags distributed to the Hollywood crowd as part of this years Emmy Awards. Valued at $6000, the bags were gifted to the likes of Kyra Segwick, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kevin Bacon among others. Norman Love Confections provided his signature line of assorted milk, dark and white chocolates.
From his website, Norman writes:

Norman Love® blends a master’s appreciation of the sensuous with the art of the chef to create handcrafted chocolates…exquisite, silky, rich chocolates…reserved for those who expect nothing less than perfection.

A day with the gators!

A friend of ours, Nancy Kerns, who is the Visitor Information Center Coordinator for the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce, wrote a really nice article on a day trip to the Everglades. You can check it out below.

GATOR FACT: Each inch from nose to brow equals one foot for a gator’s length. Fourteen inches from nose to brow means a fourteen foot gator. I would advise eyeballing this measurement!

I want to recommend some activities that you can pass on to visitors who would like to go to the Everglades for part of the day.

You will want to suggest to your visitors to start their day early because the early bird gets to see lots of gators! Direct them to one of many airboat rides in the area. I can highly recommend Wooten’s Airboat Rides or Captain Doug’s Airboat Rides. Wooten’s offers a ride on a large boat, capacity 20-25 and really thrills you with speed while cruising through the Everglades. Captain Doug’s offers a ride on a small airboat, 6 people, and you travel through the mangroves. Both have knowledgeable guides who know just where to find the gators.

Your visitors will now be ready for a little lunch and a break from the beautiful Florida sunshine. I highly suggest Triad Seafood Café where they can dine on the deck overlooking the Barron River. Relax on the screened deck and check out the boats, kayaks and pelicans going by while your grouper basket, a local favorite, is prepared. When stone crab season arrives be ready for all you can eat at the going market price.

Please remind your visitors that they can stop by the Everglades Visitor Center where they will be cheerfully greeted by either Jeanette or Cathy. They are both in the know about area attractions and where to dine. Jeanette also speaks fluent French since she hails from Canada. The visitor center also has some fun t-shirts, cards, books, jewelry and gator souvenirs for your out of town guests. I couldn’t pass up the gator earrings!

It has been an eventful day in the Everglades but your visitors must stop by Susie’s Café for ice cream that will keep them cool for their trip back to Naples. There is so much more to do in the Everglades. Be on the lookout for the next Gator Tales!

Nancy Kerns

The Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce
Visitor Information Center Coordinator
2390 Tamiami Trail North, Suite 210
Naples, FL 34103
239-298-7936
nkerns@napleschamber.org

Naples home sales surged in the first quarter of 2010

The May 2010 Downing-Frye newsletter has been released. There’s alot of good information in here that shows positive signs in the Naples real estate market.

May 2010 – There are no signs of a seasonal slowdown in the Naples area, as home sales surged in the first quarter of 2010 according to a report released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island).
In the $1 million to $2 million price segment, the number of pending sales doubled with 146 contracts in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 73 contracts in the same quarter a year ago. The average days a property was on the market decreased 10 percent in this price segment in the first quarter of 2010. Condominiums are leading the market improvement as overall pending sales increased 75 percent in the first quarter of 2010 to 1,679 contracts compared to 957 contracts in the first quarter of 2009. Condo closed sales in the $500,000 to $1 million price range increased to 96 closed sales in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 48 closed sales in the first quarter of 2009.
Overall pending sales saw a 55 percent increase, with 3,346 contracts in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 2,160 contracts in the first quarter of 2009. Overall closed home sales under $300,000 increased 40 percent with 1,393 sales in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 992 closed sales in the first quarter of 2009. Single-family pending sales increased 39 percent with 1,667 contracts in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 1,203 contracts in the first quarter of 2009.
The available inventory decreased 15 percent to 9,557 properties in the first quarter of 2010 compared to 11, 211 properties in the same quarter a year ago.
According to Mike Hughes, Vice-President of Downing-Frye Realty, Inc., “Our transactions for April 2010 were up 70% over last April. We’ve already closed over 1,000 transactions this year. Buyers have recognized the values and are jumping on board. If there was ever a time to secure a great location at a great price, this is it, and apparently the word is out.”

Source: Naples Area Board of REALTORS®

If need more information on the Naples real estate market, please don’t hesitate to contact Ruth Bethem, Broker-Associate toll-free at 877-777-7545 or email her directly at ruth@ruthbethem.com.

Naples buyers are moving into the higher priced real estate categories.

Our Downing-Frye broker, Mike Hughes, has released the most recent newsletter and has an optimistic outlook for the real estate market moving forward. He refers to a report that shows inventory has declined 14 percent which is a really positive indicator.

SOUTHWEST FLORIDA

January 2010 – Buyers are purchasing higher priced property in the Naples area as consumer confidence continues, according to a report released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island).

Overall pending sales for properties in the $300,000 to $500,000 category increased 230 percent with 155 contracts in November 2009 compared to 47 contracts in November 2008. A pending sales increase in the $300,000 to $500,000 price segment was seen in both the single-family home market, which was up 200 percent, and the condo market, where pending sales increased 282 percent in November 2009 compared to November 2008.

The report provides annual comparisons of single-family home and condo sales (via the SunshineMLS), price ranges, geographic segmentation and includes an overall market summary. The statistics are presented in chart format, along with the following analysis:

Overall pending sales increased 118 percent with 880 contracts in November 2009 compared to 403 contracts in November 2008. Overall pending sales under $300,000 increased 108 percent with 593 contracts in November 2009 compared to 285 contracts in November 2008.

Single-family home pending sales increased 83 percent with 449 contracts in November 2009 compared to 245 contracts in November 2008.

Overall closed condo sales increased 136 percent with 248 sales in November 2009 compared to 105 in November 2008.

The overall median closed price decreased 11 percent to $173,000 in November 2009 from $195,000 in November 2008.

For the 12 months ending November 2009, the overall median closed price decreased 37 percent to $179,000 from $285,000 for the 12 months ending November 2008. Excluding the $300,000 and under segment, comprising a majority of foreclosure-related property sales, the overall median price for the market dropped by only 7 percent in a comparison of the 12 months ending November 2008 and the 12 months ending November 2009.

The median refers to the middle value in a set of statistical values that are arranged in ascending or descending order, in this case prices at which homes were actually sold.

The available inventory decreased 14 percent to 9,469 in November 2009 compared to 11,116 in November 2008.

“As season approaches, December marks the time of year that most sellers list their property. However, we are not seeing a large increase in the available inventory due to yearend sales remaining strong,” stated Mike Hughes, Vice-President of Downing-Frye Realty.

As the market continues to trend upward, buyer’s renewed confidence aids in the overall development of the area.

Source: Naples Area Board of REALTORS©

The market is looking much more favorable for 2010. If you have any questions or simply need some information on the Naples real estate market, please give me a call at Ruth Bethem, Broker-Associate, Downing-Frye Realty, Inc., Naples, Florida. My toll-free number is 877-777-7545 or you can reach me by email at ruth@ruthbethem.com.

Cal Chihuly exhibit comes to the Naples Museum of Art

The Naples Museum of Art has distributed a press release announcing a new exhibit by Dale Chihuly. The museum is located on Pelican Bay Blvd., west of US 41 in Pelican Bay.

In 2000, an unforgettable Dale Chihuly show christened the Naples Museum of Art as it first opened its doors. In 2010, a spectacular new show by the renowned artist will be part of the museum’s 10th-anniversary season. For four decades, Chihuly has produced a body of work unlike any other, helping to redefine the medium and revolutionize the American studio glass movement. Join us for this Chihuly exhibition and see the beautiful and unique new pieces he has chosen to share with us!

Additionally, there will be a special store within the exhibition where visitors can purchase books and Studio Edition glass and prints by Dale Chihuly.

Date: January 23 – April 25, 2010
Time: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m., Sunday – Noon – 4 p.m.
Location: Naples Museum Of Art, 5833 Pelican Bay Boulevard
Cost:General Admission: $8 Adult $4 Student

From January 31-May 3, Admission $12 Adult, $6 Student

This is a beautiful body of work and well worth a visit to the museum.

The Museum is celebrating is 10th Anniversary.