Nona Blog

The Nona Blog features events, special offers & development updates for the Lake Nona area as well as the greater Orlando Area.

Jan. 10, 2018

What to Expect From the New Lake Nona Performance Resort & Spa

Lake Nona Performance Resort & SpaLake Nona has become known for master-planned communities and innovation all across the country. Tavistock Development has been behind the many unique designs and modern amenities offered throughout the area.

One of those innovations coming very soon is called the Lake Nona Performance Resort & Spa. It's expected to provide 250 guest rooms with an additional 80 condos Arquitectonica out of Miami will be designing the resort.

Why is it a Performance Resort?

Since the resort will go into a location very close to the USTA National Campus, the district is being called the Lake Nona Performance District. Since this is the case, the resort will follow suit and will include large guest rooms perfect for stretching and fitness equipment. Even the mattresses will be fitness-designed to help with recovery after training.

The resort is expected to include many additional touches to cater to athletes and those looking for a place to train and recover. It's expected to be a bit of a home-away-from home for those training in the area. In addition, the resort will feature a 24-hour fitness facility, on-site nutritionals and sport-focused TV programming.

Plenty of Fun Awaits

Along with the ability to train and recover, athletes staying at or living at the resort will be able to have plenty of fun. The Lake Nona Performance Resort & Spa is expected to feature a crystal lagoon and a 120,000-square-foot beach volleyball venue. The lagoon will cover about 15 acres and will provide lounge chairs and more. It will allow those staying to enjoy swimming paddle boarding and even sailing.

The Goals of the Resort

The resort will be found within the Tavistock master-planned community and will provide incredible views of the crystal lagoon and Lake Nona. The resort provides three main goals for guests:

  • Performance - It has been designed to provide just what athletes need to perform better and become the best they can. Quick-turn laundry will be available for on demand service, along with a kids' area with healthy activities, a fitness and spa campus and even a 24-hour Technogym-equipped fitness center.
  • Nutrition - To perform at your best, you need to be fueled properly. Customized menus for pre and post workout recommendations will be provided by an on-site nutritionist, along with full food and beverage services including sport drink stations, juice bars and an on-site garden.
  • Recovery - Another key to performance is recovery and the resort will cover this fully. The large mattresses are designed for incredible sleep and all rooms will have blackout shades and circadian lighting features. Even the locker rooms will feature amenities for recovery, such as aromatherapy, a world-class spa and more.

It's all wrapped up into one incredible resort for athletes and others looking to perform at their very best. The resort will even offer a large rooftop lounge for meetings, a huge ballroom for events and several restaurants throughout the campus. More than 100,000 guests are expected to visit the resort yearly once it opens in 2020.

Posted in Lake Nona News
Jan. 10, 2018

Top Mistakes Made by Retirees When Buying a Home

retirement home communityYour retirement should be a time when you can live in a home you love and in a destination you love. Many retirees have dreamed of owning a certain type of home and now they are ready to buy. However, they could easily make a few mistakes and end up wishing they'd never moved.

While preplanning for your retirement and the home that's right for you is important, you also want to be aware of the mistakes of those that have gone before you. Here are some of the top mistakes made when retirees decide to buy their retirement home.

They Don't have a Plan

Sure, you've saved for retirement and put away money for years, but do you have a plan for selling your current home and buying the next one? Maybe you haven't even come to an agreement with your spouse on the location of your retirement home. Before you retire, take time to think about what you really want out of the home and the location.

Florida is a very popular retirement destination and offers more than just golf and good weather. However, if you don't have a plan, it could end up as just a pipe dream.

In addition, many retirees think they will sell their home and buy an RV to travel. However, if you've never lived in an RV or even vacationed in one, you may be in for a rude awakening. Take the time to create a plan, test out the RV (if that's on your bucket list) and consider the possibilities.

Consider the Home Financing Options

In a perfect world, you'd sell your current home and use the proceeds to pay for the next home. However, it's not a perfect world and many reach retirement still carrying a mortgage on their home. Then, they don't think enough about the future before they put a huge amount of cash down on the next home.

It's best to sit down with a financial adviser before you sell your home and buy your retirement home. While you may not need a mortgage during retirement, you may want to make sure you're not house rich and cash poor. An adviser can help protect your assets and your cash to ensure you're set up for success.

Underestimated Home-related Expenses

Even without a mortgage there are expenses you must consider. Make sure you can afford more than just the sales price of the home. You will still have to pay taxes, deal with maintenance, cover lawn care and pay for insurance on the home.

Sometimes, choosing a 55-and-over community is a good option as you may not have to handle as much maintenance. However, these communities have fees you must pay for the maintenance, which must be considered.

Buying Based on What You Make Now

During retirement, you may have a pension or some sort of income, but it will likely be far less than what you have now. Many retirees make the mistake of buying a home based on what they make before they retire. This can set you up for failure, especially if you take out a mortgage.

There are several mistakes a retiree can make when buying a new home. Make sure you sit down with a financial adviser first and then work with a good real estate agent in the area you want to live in. This will help to ensure you get the advice you need to enjoy retirement without added stress.

Jan. 10, 2018

Top Affordable 55+ Communities Near Orlando, Florida

The Villages FloridaWhen you're ready to retire to Central Florida, you need to choose the right community for you. Many lean towards the 55+ communities because they offer great amenities at affordable prices. Here's a look at just a few of the most affordable 55+ communities found near Orlando.

The Villages

Technically, The Villages is a city of its own, but it's most-known as a retirement community near Orlando. Not all of The Villages are actually 55+ communities, however. It's home to about 75,000 residences with many single-family homes and manufactured homes.

This huge retirement community offers great resort-style amenities; retail centers plenty of dining options and some of the most affordable properties in the area. Homes actually start at lower than $100K and go up from there. The Villages is the largest active adult community in the entire state and one of the best places to retire to.

On Top of the World

Found in Ocala, Florida, On Top of the World offers a great location with three championship golf courses, plenty of recreational amenities, social events all year long, many clubhouses and more. Many districts are found throughout with a mixture of attached homes and single-family homes. It's very possible to find an affordable property here for retirement and many home styles are available.

Trilogy Orlando

Located in Groveland, Florida, Trilogy Orlando is a very pedestrian-friendly community for adults. The grounds are well-kept and the location is one of the best in Central Florida. It's a bit of a newer community and offers a massive amenity center covering nearly 60,000 square feet. Some of the areas may still be under development, but the home prices are very affordable here.

Twin Lakes

Found in Kissimmee, Florida, Twin Lakes offers a very popular active adult community with great pricing. The community offers many home styles and floor plans with some homes starting in the mid $200s. Residents enjoy access to a large lakefront clubhouse, fitness center, ballroom, game room and so much more. There's a large swimming pool here, along with pickleball courts, basketball courts, tennis courts and bocce ball courts. Of course, many water activities are also offered on the lake.

Arlington Ridge

Found in Leesburg, Florida, Arlington Ridge offers a more intimate community. It's home to 629 single-family homes with plenty of resort-style amenities. The community offers a budget-friendly option with luxury amenities, such as resort-style swimming pools, a championship golf course, sport courts and so much more.

Finding the right community in Central Florida for retirement doesn't have to be difficult or super expensive. Many of the top retirement communities in the area are very affordable and still offer the luxury amenities you desire. There are several great choices. Those listed here are just a few of the more affordable options.

If you're looking to move to Central Florida for your retirement, make sure you take the time to look at the many 55+ communities. Many offer everything you will need and can be rather affordable. Work with a local real estate agent with experience in these communities to ensure you get the best deal possible.

Jan. 10, 2018

New Water Sports Park Coming to Lake Nona Soon

Lake Nona Water ParkAn area of Central Florida that just keeps on expanding, Lake Nona will soon get a new Water Sports Park. This isn't some type of typical water park, but instead, it's an adventure park filled with incredible fun and something the region has yet to truly see.

The park will be called the Nona Adventure Park and will feature a solar-powered watersports cable system, an inflatable aqua park and a 60-foot tall climbing tower. The announcement came in November and the new park is expected to be open by the summer of 2018.

The Solar-Powered Watersports Cable System

The Park will feature the first solar-powered water ski and wakeboard cable system in the entire world. It's called the Rixen cable system and will provide two tracks around the lake. The main track will be a full-size option that runs a total of 2,500 feet and will allow for speed up to 36 miles per hour. It will be able to handle ten riders at once with many wakeboard features for both beginners and advanced riders.

The second track will be a two-tower cable system running just 320 feet long. It will cater to beginner and intermediate riders with a floating dock encircling the lake making it easy for riders to get a back to the starting dock regardless of where they may fall.

The Inflatable Aqua Park

Lake Nona Waterpark MapAnother very cool feature of the Nona Adventure Park will be the Inflatable Aqua Park. This park will be a large-scale, customized, open water Wibit aqua park with interconnected inflatables. IT will provide plenty of obstacles for people to enjoy and for hours of great fun. The park will feature climbing obstacles, trampolines, slides, floating pathways and more.

The design is inspired by LEGO with interlocking units from Wibit allowing for endless paths and all kinds of fun.

The Climbing Tower

In addition to the cable system and the inflatable aqua park, the Climbing Tower offers another great attraction coming to Lake Nona's new water park. This climbing tower will offer a 60-foot KristallTurm climbing system with many different elements. It will include ropes, three 50-foot climbing walls, two 60-foot climbing ropes and more. There will even be a kids' ropes course.

More than Just Fun at a Waterpark

Along with opening to the public throughout the year, the Nona Adventure Park is expected to host competitions, team building events and other special events. Access to the different amenities of the park will be handled on an individual basis through the WakeSys control system. This will allow guests to be given an RFID wristband to give them access to the amenities.

The Nona Adventure Park will be located on Adventure Lake, which is found near Laureate City Park in Lake Nona. It will be interconnected with the 44 miles of trails and those walking, biking or skating to the water park will be given a discount.

There are all kinds of new things coming to Lake Nona soon, but the Nona Adventure Park may be the most exciting yet.

Posted in Lake Nona News
Jan. 10, 2018

Lake Nona Golf & Country Club Earns Big Award

The Clubhouse at the Lake Nona Golf & Country ClubThe Lake Nona Golf & Country Club is known as one of the best private golf courses not just in Florida, but in the entire world. It has been ranked as one of the top course for many years and again, the Tom Fazio golf course has been recognized at a Platinum Club of the World by Club Leaders Forum.

Along with this specific honor, the club was also recognized as a Distinguished Club by the Boardroom magazine for the third year in a row. To add to the award shelf, Lake Nona Golf & Country Club was also named to the list of Top 100 Platinum Clubs of America and has been on that list for three years in a row.

It's the first time any golf course in Central Florida has been recognized with top honors like this all at the same time.

Innovation Towards an Elevated Experience

Lake Nona Golf & Country Club has become such a fantastic course due to the ability to innovate when necessary and elevate the member and guest experience. Tavistock has invested in renovations to the greens and added a world-class Golf Performance Center over the past few years. In addition the Bath & Racquet Club and the Clubhouse were both refurbished. Many family-friendly events have been added to the schedule and new amenities, such as the Nona Crew House were added to make the club even better.

With the innovations and ability to elevate the experience of both members and guests, Lake Nona Golf & Country Club has become the benchmark for other clubs across the country. The goal has always been to match membership with what members desire and Lake Nona is now being rewarded for doing so.

Platinum Club of the World Status

Being named as a Platinum Club of the World is one of the most prestigious recognitions given in the private club industry. Clubs earning this honor excel in areas where most don't and they go above and beyond for members. The Club Leaders Forum looks at the following to decide which clubs gain this status:

  • Overall Experience
  • Professional services
  • Universal Recognition
  • Adapting to Changing Times
  • Quality of Membership
  • Amenities and Facilities
  • Governance and Management

Distinguished Club from Boardroom Magazine

Being named as a distinguished club by Boardroom Magazine is an honor only 176 total clubs in the world were given. The magazine only gives this honor to clues providing a truly world-class member experience. They use a very extensive evaluation process including factors, such as:

  • Providing a high-level of accommodations
  • Refined Facilities
  • Club Governance Practices
  • Incredible service

Clubs that truly go above and beyond for members earn this designation and Lake Nona Golf & Country Club was once again one of those clubs.

As Tavistock continues to invest in Lake Nona it's likely there will be even more awards and honors for the country club. For now, the country club and rest knowing it has achieved something no other Central Florida country club has achieved. Lake Nona Golf & Country Club continues to impress and move up the list of top country clubs in the entire world.

Posted in Lake Nona News
Jan. 10, 2018

A Few Cautions to Remember When Buying a Retirement Home in Florida

Buying a Retirement HomeTypically, couples start shopping for a retirement home as they get close to calling it quits leaving the workforce for good. This could mean downsizing, but it could also mean relocating to sunny Florida in order to enjoy the climate, attractions and wonderful retirement communities.

Since you don't have the same needs as you did when you were buying a home for a family, the process can be a bit different. As you go into the process of buying a retirement home in Florida, it's important to seek out a skilled real estate professional to help. It's not going to be the same as buying a home for a family and you will be a bit like a first-time homebuyer.

Often, retirees buy a new home for retirement due to the fact that they don't need nearly as much space. In addition, they may want to move to a new area where their children live or where they can enjoy the activities they prefer. While Central Florida provides many great retirement communities, there are some things you should be aware of when buying a home or retirement.

This can be a scary time as some will try to prey on retirees, especially if you're moving from another state. They may lie about the cost of utilities, property taxes, home association dues, the lot size and other things. These may show up on an appraisal and could cause you all types of issues.

Other things, such as how quiet the neighborhood, how convenient it really is and other important factors may not be correct on a community's website. It's important to be careful as you go into retirement and buy a home for retirement. Here are a few things to do to ensure you don't have any issues when you buy a retirement home in Florida.

1. Drive the Neighborhood

Even if you have to vacation to the area to drive the neighborhood, you should. It's important to understand what you're getting into and it's best to see it. Drive the neighborhood during the day and in the evening, as some communities are completely different when the sun is out compared to when it's dark.

2. Get a Home Inspection

A home inspection is a vital part of the home buying process. However, you cannot just trust the home inspector the seller recommends. Instead, get your own independent home inspector to do a thorough inspection. You should also take the time to check the references and credentials of your inspector before hiring them.

3. Contact the Tax Assessor

You don't have to guess what the property taxes will be. Instead, you can simply contact the local tax assessor to ensure you have the right amount for property taxes. Make sure you ask about any improvements they have a record of. If they don't have a record of something, such as a room addition or a new deck, your taxes could end up higher than the amount they tell you.

4. Hire a Local Real Estate Agent

A good real estate agent will know the community or communities you're shopping in. They will be able to provide you with more information about any property you consider and will also be able to give you an idea of what the community really offers.

It's important to be careful whenever you're buying a home. When it's a retirement home in Florida, the last thing you want is to end up with a location or home you're not thrilled about. These are your golden years and you deserve to enjoy them. Take these cautions and you'll have a better chance of buying a great retirement home in Florida.

Jan. 10, 2018

A Quick Look at More than $170 Million in Lake Nona Projects

KPMG Training and Innovation CenterLake Nona is a community in Southeast Orlando with about 13,000 residents. It's growing very fast and Tavistock Development Company is responsible for plenty of the growth. Currently, there are several projects going on in the area and together, they have a value of more than $170 million.

Some of these projects are large, while others are a bit smaller. With plenty of businesses already moving into the area, it's not super surprising that there are so many developments underway.

The KPMG Training and Innovation Center moved to the area, which was a $430 million projects. In addition, Drive Shack, Inc., a New York-Based company will open a location to provide golf entertainment to the area in 2018. Many other companies have moved in or have plans to move into the area, as well.

Amazon.com Fulfillment Center - $132 Million

Amazon Fulfillment Center Lake NonaThe largest of the projects currently underway is the Amazon.com Inc. Fulfillment Center. This facility will cover 2.3 million square feet and it's valued at $132 million. About 1,500 new jobs will come from the center, which will be responsible for picking, packing and shipping small items, such as consumer goods, books and electronics.

The fulfillment center will be found at Jeff Faqua Boulevard and Boggy Creek Road near the Orlando International Airport. Amazon chose the location due to many amenities, the infrastructure and the collaboration it allows with other companies in the area. Tavistock Development Company is even be expanding the Boggy Creek Road to help accommodate the project.

Pixon Apartment Complex - $30.2 million

Pixon Apartments in Medical City Lake NonaThe 11-story Pixon Apartment Complex is the next one of the three projects totaling more than $170 million in Lake Nona. Construction began in September and this is the fourth of the multi-family projects from Tavistock Development Company.

The community features six micro-apartment units with about 360 square feet each with another 201 units ranging from studios to two-bedroom options. All apartments offer high ten-foot ceilings, stainless steel appliances, hardwood flooring, quartz countertops, in-suite laundry and many other great features.

In addition, Tesla vehicles will be on site for residents to share. The community will be an eco-friendly, neighbor-friendly option for those looking to live in the Lake Nona area.

Along with the car sharing program, residents will enjoy 24-hour concierge service, valet services, a fitness center and many other amenities. Bike storage will be found on site and there will also be a three-story parking garage.

The ground floor of this project will also provide 32,500 square feet of retail space. There will also be a resident lobby and co-living space complete with a kitchen, conference room and virtual arcade.

Balfour Beatty Construction is the general contractor for this project and leasing is expected to start in the summer of 2018.

Lake Nona Creekside Shopping Center - $9 million

Lake Nona CreeksideThe other project included in the current $170 million in projects going on in Lake Nona is the Creekside Shopping Center. This center will provide more shopping to the area, along with a 120-room hotel.

These projects are currently underway in Lake Nona and many more are expected to break ground or receive approval throughout 2018.

Posted in Lake Nona News
Jan. 10, 2018

Will a Home with a View Cost More?

home with a beautiful waterviewShopping for a home with a view could mean you're going to pay more than a home without a view. In some areas of the country, listing language gets creative with phrases, such as "ocean view" or "ocean breeze". Neither of these phrases mean waterfront, but they could still cost more than a home without a view.

Whether a home with a view cost more or not is all up to the home and the person buying it. Sometimes, homes with incredible views will sell for more than the asking price due to the high number of offers received. If buyers absolutely love the view, it could go for big bucks and it could be a property that costs more.

While the view and the size of the lot didn't used to matter so much, today's buyers are looking for plenty more than they used to look for. Some love to have a massive lot, while others may fall in love the view. Even in Central Florida, there are plenty of homes with incredible views that could go for a higher price than a home without a view.

Which Views Cost the Most?

Not all views are created equal. If you only get a view from the top floor or from one window, the home may not fetch the same price as a beautiful home with huge windows overlooking the lake.

A ground-level view will provide an increase in value from about one-half-percent to 2.5%, while a rooftop view could increase the value by 3% to 5%. An unobstructed view from a higher floor in a condo building could provide an increase of 9% to 12%, as well.

The biggest increase will come from properties with an unobstructed water view. Of course, the body of water matters, as an oceanfront property will go for more than a lakefront property, in most cases. Regardless of the body of water, a home with an unobstructed water view will usually go for 10% to as much as 50% more than the same home without a view.

Shopping for a View in Central Florida

If you're seeking a home with a view in Central Florida, you'll likely be after a golf course, lake or downtown Orlando view. There are several great golf course homes, which may sell for more than a comparable home without a beautiful view of one of the top area courses. In addition, Central Florida is packed with lakefront and lakeview homes. There are some condo buildings and homes that even provide great views of the Orlando skyline.

Expect to pay more for a home with a view. Depending on the view, it could cost you as much as 50% more compared to a similar property without a view. Of course, there are several other factors that go into the price of any home. The view is just one of the many reasons a property may cost more.

The best way to ensure you're getting a home with a view for the right price is to work with a local real estate professional. Your agent will be able to ensure the amount you offer is fair and makes sense for the home you plan to buy.

Nov. 6, 2017

Headquarters of BBA Aviation Moving to Lake Nona Town Center

BBA Aviation LogoThe Lake Nona Town Center has been selected by BBA Aviation for their new headquarters. The company is known for providing signature flight support and has decided they are a great match for Lake Nona. They believe this best-in-class facility will fit perfectly with the company mission and direction.

The Lake Nona Town Center was developed by Tavistock Development and the new location for BBA Aviation will be constructed by PCL Construction. The ground breaking on the office building is expected to happen any time now and completion is expected in late 2018.

The location is one of the most convenient in the fast-growing Lake Nona Town Center. It will be found at the southwest corner of Lake Nona Boulevard and Veteran's Way. The space will cover about 65,000 square feet and will stand six stories tall. It will be a class-A, multi-tenant office building.

BBA Aviation is very happy about the move and believes it will help boost their business to the next level. They have called the community "state-of-the-art" for both businesses and residents. The company believes Lake Nona offers endless benefits for both the business and their employees. They are thrilled for the future of the company with a new headquarters in a prime Lake Nona location.

The goal of the company is to create an incredible work environment for employs so that they can move their world-class business to the next level. They look forward to becoming a part of the Lake Nona community.

The new headquarters for BBA Aviation/Signature Flight Support will be a LEED-designed facility with the best climate control, collaborative spaces, outdoor spaces and ergonomic work stations possible. The design will also maximize the use of natural light. The company is expected to occupy the new space within the first quarter of 2019.

M+A architects, an award-winning architecture firm will be responsible for the interior architecture of the space. Not only will this be a prime location, but it will be a master-designed space in one of the fastest-growing communities in the state of Florida.

The Lake Nona Town Center covers a total of 100 acres an 3.8 million square feet. It's a mixed-used space within the large-scale master-planned community of Lake Nona. Once it has been fully developed, the Lake Nona Town Center will include over 80 specialty retailers, restaurants, anchor stores and junior anchor stores.

To date, the Lake Nona Town Center has successfully leased and opened 75,000 square feet of class-A office space and another 16,000 square feet of restaurant and retail space. They have also made a deal with the dual branded Courtyard by Marriott and the Residence Inn by Marriott Hotel. In addition, the project includes a multi-level parking structure.

A number of build-to-suit opportunities are still available throughout Lake Nona, such as the Sports & Performance District. Many new businesses are opening or have opened throughout this fast-growing area near the Orlando International Airport. BBA Aviation/Signature Flight Support is one of the latest to make the announcement. More company headquarters are expected to relocate to Lake Nona, along with new locations for many businesses opening throughout the area.

Posted in Lake Nona News
Nov. 6, 2017

Why Buy Your Retirement Home Before You Retire?

Retired and buying a homeHave you been dreaming of the day you will retire? Do you want to live in Central Florida, enjoy the amazing climate and play golf or tennis every single day? This is the dream of many looking to retire, but you shouldn't wait until you retire to buy your retirement home.

Your twilight years are the time to buy your retirement home. You're still fully employed and you have a few years left before you'll retire. This means, you not only have a better chance of getting a mortgage, but you can also set yourself up for a very successful retirement. Here are a few reasons why you should buy your retirement home before you retire.

Mortgage Approval is Easier

Lenders look at more than just credit when you apply for a mortgage. The debt-to-income ratio makes a big difference and it won't be as pretty if you're not employed. When you're still employed, you will likely have more income to help keep this ratio lower.

This makes it easier to qualify for a mortgage and for a lower interest rate. If you wait until you retire, you may be limited the amount you can get in a mortgage for your retirement home.

Ability to Pay off the New Mortgage Faster

When you can handle a second home mortgage, you should take the opportunity now to buy before you retire. This will give you a head start on getting the retirement home paid off. If you plan it just right, you'll be able to pay off the retirement home when you sell your current home; with the proceeds.

More Money Available for Renovations

Before you retire, you have a regular income and a home to leverage for renovation money. There's no guarantee you will find the perfect retirement home and you may want to renovate it some before you move in during your golden years. In addition, this allows you to shop for homes that may not be perfect and score a deal, if you already plan to renovate.

After you retire, it may be harder to get a mortgage with enough cash to help you with renovations. Plus, you won't have an income to count on when it comes to paying for renovations yourself. Buying a few years before you retire gives you time to get the renovations done and make the home perfect before moving in.

Ability to Expand Your Portfolio

When you're capable of carrying two mortgages as once, you have the ability to expand your portfolio. You can rent out the home you plan to use for retirement before you retire. It can become an income generating property for you, which will only make it easier to pay off once you retire. You may even have enough coming in from the property to help you retire sooner.

Along with these reasons, buying a home before you retire will give you some tax benefits, as well. It will also allow you to know where you're going and what to expect when you do leave your job. It just makes sense to buy a home before you retire and use it as your retirement home when that time comes.