New Nature Preserve Rises in West Charlotte County


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, January 5th, 2017 – Consider Cape Haze or Placida if in a search of communities most likely to maintain for a long time their old Florida charm. This quaint destination for searches of homes for sale in Charlotte County already teems with many greenbelt areas and preserves, and it added yet another one recently.

Development work on a natural wildlife sanctuary, Preserve at Mercabo, is now complete on a 30-acre site adjacent west of Placida Road at the entrance to the Boca Grande Causeway towards Gasparilla Island.

Hotel Plan Thwarted

New Nature Preserve Rises in West Charlotte County

A resort hotel had been planned in this property but the Gasparilla Island Conservation and Improvement Association (GICIA) thwarted this project. GICIA purchased the site for $20.6 million, which it raised in a fund-solicitation drive in 2015.

The conservation group’s initiative to maintain the Mercabo property as a nature preserve and wildlife habitat resonated among the local neighborhoods. More than 1,100 local residents contributed, ranging from workers and residents of nearby communities to well-to-do snowbirds. With this show of concern and support on environmental protection, GICIA was able to raise $22 million in just seven weeks and forthwith closed the deal in January 2016.

The conservation group eventually completed clearing of the property this December. The old Mercabo Conference Center at the site has been demolished and replanted with native trees and vegetation. With all these completed, GICIA not only fulfilled its conservancy mission but also qualified for a property tax exemption from Charlotte County.

Coral Creek Club Support

Understandably, the residents of the gated community of Coral Creek Club are amongst those who have been very supportive of the GICIA move for the development of the Preserve of Mercabo. This upscale neighborhood is not only within the immediate locality of this new natural wildlife sanctuary. It also has a pristine setting as well, being a golf community surrounded by a 6,000-acre nature preserve.

Coral Creek Club sprawls off Gasparilla and Placida Roads just across the causeway from Gasparilla Island and Boca Grande. In addition to access to a world-class golf course, the residents of this community with a club membership get access privileges to a 17,000 square-foot clubhouse.

Also accessible to club members is the nearby Coral Creek Airport which has a private runway. It has one hangar and office space for personnel facilitating arrivals and departures. Other amenities available to Coral Creek Club residents include a community pool and a boat dock in the community’s namesake Coral Creek, which is also ideal for fishing.

Charlotte homes for sale at Coral Creek Club are luxury residences with asking prices typically quoted in the $1.2‒$1.7 million range. These are designed with floor plans of about 2,700 square feet, featuring four bedrooms.

More Options at Cape Haze Windward

A short distance north on Placida Road, choices on Charlotte homes for sale are wider at another golf community, Cape Haze Windward, which is composed of 457 homes. Quoted prices here range from the $200s up to the $600s, with choices on single-family residences, condos and patio homes.

The dominant architectural style in this community is 1990s Florida modern with high ceilings and barrel-tile roofs. Cape Haze Windward also notably sits just south of Amberjack Natural Park, perfect for a lifestyle amidst a natural setting that locals strive to protect.