Fun, sun and sand snowman on the Paradise Coast, Florida

As we are gearing up for another great season in sunny Naples, Florida, there’s an abundance of activities I wanted to share with you.  So, get your calendars out and ready, set, GO!

Paradise Coast Naples Marco Island Everglades

Plan an Affordable Cool Season Getaway to Florida’s Paradise Coast

Great values, fantastic shopping and festive holiday celebrations entice travelers to visit Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades

Naples, Fla.– (November 22, 2010) –Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades –the Paradise Coast – turns up the heat with exciting events, beautiful beaches, wonderful wildlife, fine dining, shopping and culture during the area’s value season. Through December, visitors can find exceptional deals on hotel accommodations with rates as low as one third to one half of what they are in the peak winter season of January through April. In addition, travelers can take advantage of lower greens fees, mild fall weather and some of the smallest crowds of the year. Plan your next Paradise Coast getaway with the following offers and activities.

For additional savings, pick up the Paradise Coast V.I.P. – Values in Paradise card now through December 15, 2010. The program, typically offered between May and December, has been so popular that it is being upgraded and expanded to become a year round promotion starting in January 2011.  It offers visitors thousands of dollars in savings at participating restaurants, attractions, tours, shops and more.  Some of the savings for 2010 include attraction discounts, buy-one-get-one-free or half-off offers and other great discounts and deals.  The V.I.P. card is free to all visitors, can be used immediately upon arrival and is easily found at area visitor center locations: the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center (relocating in December to the corner of Fifth Avenue South and Tamiami Trail in the heart of downtown Naples), the Marco Island Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center, the Greater Eastern Collier County Visitor Center in Immokalee and the Everglades Area Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center.


Resort Hotel Milestone

The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, which helped transform Naples into a major destination for luxury, family and business travel, is celebrating its 25th birthday on Dec. 4. To mark this great milestone and silver anniversary, The Ritz-Carlton, Naples is launching an exclusive “25 Silver Rooms” offer through its online and phone booking channels. For 25 nights beginning Nov. 28 and ending Dec. 22, 25 coastal view guest rooms at the beach resort will be available at a very special rate of $125/night. In addition, the Ritz-Carlton, Naples will host a holiday concert on Dec. 4 featuring Grammy®-nominated musician, TV personality and radio show host John Tesh, who will perform holiday classics, his own collection of original tunes and will certainly entertain the crowd with useful “intelligence,” in the beach resort’s grand Vanderbilt Ballroom. Concert doors open at 7:15 p.m. and show time is at 8 p.m. To purchase tickets to John Tesh in Concert at The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, call the resort’s Leisure Reservations line directly at (239) 598-6644. Concert packages do not include resort accommodations; however special anniversary pricing is available, starting at $225/night.

Signature Events and Openings:

Spending the Holidays on the Paradise Coast:
Gaze at festive boats as they cruise along Naples Bay during the 2010 Marine Industries Christmas Boat Parade on Dec. 11 from 6 – 8 p.m. Awards will be given out to the boat with the best sail, best power vessel and best commercial vessel. This event is free to the public.

From Dec. 8-13, the Tiburón Golf Club at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples, will host the Shark Shootout, a special PGA Tour-sanctioned charity tournament hosted by Greg Norman. Come out to watch 12 two-man teams consisting of the top PGA TOUR players. Tickets start at $25 for tournament daily grounds passes to $110 for admission to the week event. Proceeds benefit the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) of Florida.

Celebrate with the animals at the Naples Zoo’s 12 Days of Wild Holiday Fun. From December 13th through 24th Naples Zoo will deliver gifts to the animals. Zoo guests will watch lions claw into beautifully wrapped presents with their favorite foods inside, lemurs nibble treats off a Christmas tree, and see many other animals enjoying delicacies made especially for each of their tastes. Admission to the 12 Days of Wild Holiday Fun is included in ticket price of $19.95.  Be sure to visit for coupons and remember that gift certificate tickets to the zoo are available at discounted prices.

Enjoy some fun in downtown Naples during Thursdays on Third when the courtyards and plazas of Third Street South come alive with the musical sounds of jazz, rock, folk, or some other style, all with a holiday focus during December. Relax and listen or if the spirit moves ‘as it always does’, dance until you can dance no more. Holiday entertainment continues with Snowfest on Dec. 4, an annual event that turns the Paradise Coast into a winter wonderland. Snowfest features 70 tons of snow, a sled mountain, ice skating rink, full scale carnival, hands-on art & crafts, food, pony rides, petting zoo and pictures with Santa. Admission is $1 per person and free for children 3 and younger.

Join the twinkling procession of boats as they make their way down Venetian Bay for the Village Boat Parade on Dec. 9. The evening includes live entertainment and an unwrapped gift drive to help spread holiday cheer. All toys donated benefit The Guadalupe Center of Immokalee’s Holiday Gift Shop.

Get into the holiday spirit a couple of weeks early, and on Dec. 11 come and see the Naples Bay Christmas Boat Parade from 6-8 p.m. Watch the annual holiday lighted boat parade from Naples City Dock or the waterfront restaurants lining the Naples Waterfront area around Naples Bay.

Watch the clear night sky light up with the New Year’s Eve Fireworks. Find a spot anywhere along Naples Beach for the annual fireworks display, blasting off from Naples Pier. This event is free.

It’s not too late to start planning for January and February’s top events –

Make a resolution to start the New Year with something beautiful around your wrist, on your wall and upon your table, purchased from one of the 260 national artists at the 15th Annual Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Show Jan. 1 -2. This free, juried holiday show, held in the heart of Downtown Naples, offers upscale shops and restaurants to enjoy before and after visiting the artists’ booths.

Connect with wildlife during the Southwest Florida Nature Festival, Jan. 14-16. This three-day festival celebrates the local coastal environment through more than 30 guided field trips to over 20 wildlife hot spots around Southwest Florida, on-the-water adventures plus on-site activities at the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center. Admission is $15 for a weekend pass ($10 per day, $5 for 12 & under).

Tantalize your taste buds at the Everglades Seafood Festival on Feb. 4-6 offering three days of live music, carnival rides, arts, crafts, and incredible food! The Everglades Seafood Festival offers something for all tastes and fun for all ages. Over 100 vendors offer a wide variety of great seafood, refreshments, midway, and hand-made arts and crafts. This event is free.

Immerse yourself into art and culture at the Naples National Art Show,Feb. 26-27. Ranked as the ninth best art festival in the nation by Sunshine Artist magazine, this juried show features 275 national artists drawing around 25,000 visitors. Festival activities will include musical performances on the park’s band shell, and numerous food vendors. Admission is $5 to benefit youth art education programs.


Clean Beaches on the Paradise Coast

Beaches in Naples, Marco Island and the Gulf Coast Everglades are clean and pristine and were not EVER impacted by the Gulf oil spill. No oil ever reached Southwest Florida and none was ever forecast to come close to this area. See conditions for yourself via live Web cams on the Paradise Coast Beach Conditions Web page, along with detailed information about area beaches, weather and more.  Also check out the Web video page for an episode of the new video series Adventures in Paradise, featuring local chef Fabrizio Aielli of Sea Salt Naples using clear and clean Gulf of Mexico seawater to cook a delicious linguine and Florida blue crab sauce dish.

For more information on visiting Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades – The Paradise Coast and a free visitors guide, call 1-800-688-3600 or visit the area’s official visitor information Web site at

For further information or  questions on Naples real estate please contact Ruth Bethem at or direct at 239-777-7007 or toll free 877-777-7545.

New Listing at the Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club, Naples, Florida

Estates at Bay Colony
Gorgeous pool overlooking golf course
Estates at Bay Colony
Family and Entertainment Room
Estates at Bay Colony
Estates at Bay Colony
Elegant Office
About two weeks ago I posted a blog about the uniqueness of Pelican Marsh’s Estates at Bay Colony in Naples, Florida Today, I’m sending you a brand new offering that is so splendid you’ll want to jet on down to see for yourself.  Located on Niblick Lane (Niblick was a wood shafted club mostly used prior to the 20th Century and is most equivalent to a modern-day 9 iron) but with these forever views, a 9 iron will never get you to where you want to be.  Contacting Ruth will.  Built by one of Naples exclusive builders, BCB Homes, and designed by renowned architect Jeff Harrell, this elegantly appointed and superbly furnished estate home of  5700 square feet plus has a well defined flow for entertaining and is a truly understated gem.  As one can expect with a BCB homes and Mr. Harrell, the interior spaces are generous and defined yet well thought out allowing for a mingling of conversation areas but budgeted those spaces that require a more private vignette setting.  Who hasn’t wanted to snuggle up on their favorite settee surrounded by comfort in the intimate spaces of their bedroom for quiet moments.  You know, the quiet, “leave me alone I’m escaping the world moments.”  With it’s cool spa colors the outdoor spaces visually encroach the interior for an experience one can only have in a subtropical environment like Naples.  Interior spaces were a well rehearsed conversation that many, if not all homeowners, request when planning out their “nest.”  But the beauty of this home lies not only in the comfort zone areas but the entertaining areas that allows conversation pits that stimulate conversation during your entertaining hours.  Dining alfresco with views of your elegant pool where the combination of water, golf course and meticulous landscaping can’t relate the sheer beauty of this home and can only be appreciated by experiencing it first hand.  Please enjoy this tour and keep your speakers on for a relaxing moment or two, but do contact me when you’re ready for your private tour.  It’s one not to be missed. Offering at $4,195,000. Furnishings available but not included in offering price.  For further information or any questions on Naples real estate please contact Ruth Bethem at or direct at 239-777-7007 or toll free 877-777-7545.

The Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club

Golf t-shot

If you’re searching for a high-integrity home with the latest architectural enhancements, pristine golf course and water vistas and a peaceful existence then The Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club in Naples, Florida is the community for you.  If you’re not familiar with this community and sometimes confuse it for Bay Colony in Pelican Bay (check out my previous posting on Bay Colony) this posting may help end the confusion.  WCI was the luxury builder and developer of both Bay Colony (on the beach) and the Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club (at Pelican Marsh).  Many golfing residents that loved the exclusiveness of Bay Colony had a high desire for a golf club as well and WCI was more than happy to oblige the void that was left when golf was not part of the offerings or plans in the development of Bay Colony.   With 280 acres they then developed the section of Pelican Marsh (on the east side of US 41 just north of Vanderbilt Beach Rd)now known as The Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club so their clients could enjoy their own community within Pelican Marsh, but also every home owner enjoys membership into the Bay Colony Beach Club, the Bay Colony Tennis Club and has an option of purchasing a membership in the Pelican Isle Yacht Club. A golf club membership to the Golf Club is reserved for each owner in the Estates.  With a very low density, The Estates boast 75 home sites with lot sizes ranging from two-thirds of an acre to a full acre, providing ample privacy and green space, with a minimum building interior space of 4,000 square feet.  Currently, there are nine luxury estate homes available for viewing ranging in offerings from $4,395,000 – $5,995,000 from 7,000 s.f to 10,000+ s.f.  With golf inspired street names like Bentgrass, which is not an especially adapted grass to southern climates but is generally used on putting greens where their environment is closely managed, to Waggle Way (small movements of the clubhead back-and-forth common with tee shots, used to trigger the swing or achieve tempo) this in itself shows the lovely sense of humor that was implemented in naming these streets.  Brassie Bend (the Brassie is the antique club that is most related to a 2-wood and is most commonly applied to pre-20th Century) Niblick Ln (Niblick was a wood shafted club mostly used prior to the 20th Century and is most equivalent to a modern-day 9 iron) and last but not least, is Dormie Dr.  A match-play is said to be “dormie” when a player has a lead that matches the holes remaining, such as  5 holes up with 5 holes to play assuring at least a halve.  The trailing golfer can only hope to tie in regulation but can’t win.  When a match reaches this state it’s said to “go dormie.”  So, this concludes your golf-term lessons for the day!  So, no matter if you waggle, shank or slice, you’ll always be a winner simply because you’ve made the decision to enjoy and live in one of Naples most pristine golfing communities:  The Estates at Bay Colony Golf Club. For further information or any questions on Naples real estate please contact Ruth Bethem at or direct at 239-777-7007 or toll free 877-777-7545.

Why Imperial? Why Now?

Night Photo of Imperial Country Club in Naples, Florida © Rick Bethem Photography. All Rights Reserved.
Imperial Country Club, Naples, Florida

Thinking of purchasing real estate in Naples? Be sure to put a significant amount of time in exploring the sweetest community in Southwest Florida: Imperial Golf Estates. Located in North Naples this is a “must see” part of your real estate tour. Why? Location, Location, Location, oh, and Value. With a combination of product from affordable condominiums and villas to spacious estate homes, this little darling of a community is situated perfectly on the east side of US 41. Where do I begin to tell all of you that haven’t been to Naples or those that are here but have forgotten about it because it’s tucked away so neatly into it’s expansive quadrant of land, about life in Imperial? Well, let’s start with the location: Conveniently located on the east side of US 41 (Tamiami Trail) and flanked by neighbors such as Collier’s Reserve and LaPlaya Golf Course, you are a short 7-8 min drive to the beach at Delnoir-Wiggins State Park to the south and about 10-12 min to the beach at the county park of Barefoot Beach. Got golf? You bet, 36 holes for your playing pleasure. Two pristine conditioned courses with an incredible clubhouse as the signature centerpiece to the community and is membership-based play with a list of impressive reciprocals during off-season. Need to sweat but want to have fun while doing it? No problem, again, within this community is the Imperial Tennis & Racquet Club as a separate membership. You say you want culture? Drive about 10 min. south to the Naples Philharmonic and the Naples Museum of Art. Boutique and designer shopping? Right behind the Phil is Waterside, a chic shopping area developed on a water feature with dancing waterfalls. Have a desire for in-town entertainment such as outdoor concerts and plush theatre seating featuring restaurants with alfresco dining, check out the Mercato, again, about 7-8 min from Imperial. Need a quick exit to the airport, we got it, only a 15 min. drive to Interstate 75. Now, let’s look at value: Currently, there are 28 homes for sale in Imperial from $299,000 for a pool home of 23oo+ s.f. to $1,049,000 for an estate size home of 3600 s.f. Lot sizes generally average about 115 ft for frontage with a few homes set on reduced lots averaging about 85 ft for frontage and many lots having depths of 100 ft+ providing ample privacy for each and every homeowner. Now, here’s the icing for the cake: Imperial residents are benefiting from years of planning by their Board of Directors with the fruition of a second back entrance that will allow residents to be on Livingston Rd through an access road currently under construction saving them travel time to all points Naples. This is a huge time-saving endeavor and the residents are so excited that, not only will it save them travel time but will also provide quicker emergency services and an alternative hurricane route. One last point, and this is significant: Imperial Golf Estates is the only community in North Naples on US 41 that can provide homeowners with these great benefits, location and value. There currently is only one home on the market in another golf community along the US 41 corridor, Audubon, that is listed at $500,000. There are currently 15 homes in Imperial Golf Estates at $500,000 or under. If that doesn’t build excitement for you, I’m just not too sure what will. For a quick peek, click this link to see homes for sale in Imperial Golf Estate or for further information or any questions on Naples real estate please contact Ruth Bethem at or call direct at 239-777-7007 or toll free 877-777-7545.

Golf course puzzle

Hey, I just found a great way to kill some time if you’re planning to play golf today, but find that a chance of rain is in the forecast. Check out this electronic puzzle of a golf course that you can play on line. It even has a clock to time your progress so you can compete with your buddies. It’s easier than trying to sink a 3 foot putt and just as much fun.