“I don’t even know how to begin to describe it,” said Stephen Parecki, owner of the Orlando-based estate agency Parecke and Co. “This is a place that people come to when they want to be close to family.”
Pareczk, 56, said the club houses two of his daughters and two grandchildren, and his wife is a member.
The Florida Keys has been in the news recently for the shooting deaths of two people and the disappearance of a young man.
But Parecko said he was surprised by the response he’s seen from residents and visitors.
“We were able to do some business for people in the Keys who wanted to come visit, and it’s really appreciated,” he said.
“It was just a very, very special occasion for us.”
The club houses about 70 people and has a spa, restaurant, gym, golf course and tennis courts.
Its first year of operations was a total failure, Pareski said.
The club had no water, electricity or running water, and its water system was in disrepair, Perecki said.
When the Florida Keys Foundation purchased the club in 2015, it asked Pareciks to provide a $500,000 donation, he said, but he was unable to do so.
The foundation is now trying to raise money to fix the facility and add lighting and restrooms.
The property, which was listed for $2.4 million, is owned by the Miami-Dade County property trust, and Pareco said he hopes the donation will help fund renovations.
Parecci said the property’s problems began in 2016 when the Florida Department of Transportation was unable or unwilling to take the property off the road because it’s not owned by any county.
“They were unable to take it off the highway because it was a private property, so I had to make a deal with them to get the property towed,” Parecia said.
But when the trust took possession of the property, it was in need of some major repairs, he added.
In July, the foundation filed for bankruptcy.
Parenciks said the foundation’s financial woes, which began last year, led him to put the club on the market.
He said he didn’t expect the club to sell for less than $2 million.
He hopes to sell the property in the next few weeks, he told The Associated Press.
“I think the people who buy it will enjoy it, and the people that don’t will have to deal with the financial issues that it has,” he added, describing it as a “special” event.
He added he would like to open the club as soon as possible.
“Hopefully it will be done this year, but I’m looking forward to it.”
The property is being used for events by the club, Parencki said, and they’ve done “quite a few events there.”
He said the Florida estate agency has been looking to build a golf course for about a decade.
The golf course is scheduled to open next year.
The resort property is owned in part by the Florida Heritage Foundation, which also owns the property.