Mattamy Homes Mounts Big Moves in Sarasota


Excited about the growth potential of the housing market in Florida, the Oakville, Ontario-based Mattamy Homes is fast moving forward with The Enclave At Forest Lakes in Sarasota and has likewise started site development for Harmony at Lakewood Ranch.

This Canadian company is among the biggest privately owned builders in North America and the largest homebuilder in Canada. Around mid-2014, it also paid $86 million for Thomas Ranch, a property comprised of more than 6,000 acres in North Port plus 3,650 acres in unincorporated Sarasota County.

Golf community revival at Forest Lakes

Mattamy Homes Mounts Big Moves in Sarasota

The development of The Enclave signals the revival of Forest Lakes’ golf and country club, a popular destination not only for golfing but also for dining and dancing up to the early 1990s. Built in 1964, The Forest Lakes Country Club occupies an expansive area east and west of Beneva Road, north of Bee Ridge Road. The fairways of its 101-acre golf course were bulldozed to give way for the development of a 189-unit luxury condominium sometime during the mid-2000s. However, this project fizzled out, overtaken by the housing market’s downturn during the Great Recession.

A favorable rezoning decision is pivotal to the revival of the golf course and the entry of Mattamy Homes’ The Enclave at Forest Lakes. In September 2014, Sarasota county commissioners unanimously approved rezoning the subdivision to increase the allowed new housing units from 189 to 202. This decision also paves the way for the reconstruction of the golf links after more than seven years of disrepair.

Grosvenor Square Capital LLC, the owner of the Forest Lakes golf course property, announced in July 2014 a tentative agreement with national homebuilder DR Horton to redevelop the links. Notably, DR Horton is also now rapidly moving to revive the moribund Sarasota Golf Club which it purchased earlier and is now preparing for above-ground construction.

Townhome, villa choices

Mattamy Homes, for its part, expects to start construction at The Enclave at Forest Lakes before the end of the 2015 first quarter. The company is eyeing options ranging from 160 to 200 contemporary townhome/villa-style units priced from the $220s to $260s. Current listings of Sarasota homes for sale at Forest Lakes, which consists of some 400 existing residences, are few and range in price from the $260s up to around the $340s. This community consists of several neighborhoods: Forest Lakes Village, Terraces of Forest Lakes, Village Green and Forest Lakes South.

The Canada-based builder is banking on the attractions of the golf course redevelopment in marketing the Enclave which will be located right next to the links. Besides setting up a brand new golf course up, the Forest Lakes redevelopment includes a clubhouse with restaurant, bar, pool, cabanas, spa and pro shop. First Tee, a national organization for children, is also set to have Forest Lakes as its home course.

Harmony at Lakewood Ranch

In Harmony at Lakewood Ranch, which Mattamy calls its “first new community in Sarasota,” the builder plans to build 635 affordable townhomes and villas as well as single family homes within. Its 235-acre site is located between Lakewood Ranch Boulevard and White Eagle Boulevard south of Neal Communities’ Central Park neighborhood. The townhomes, with floor areas between from 1,340 and 1,936 fee, will be priced from the $180s.

Prices, on the other hand, will start from the $230s for single family homes which will feature floor plans ranging from 1,606 to 2,695 square feet. Harmony’s planned facilities include walking/biking trails, an amenities center with gym, pool, clubhouse, tot lot, and picnic area. Mattamy Homes expects market launch of Harmony at Lakewood Ranch in early 2015, which looms as just one of the kickoffs to another exciting year for Florida’s housing market.