Market Snapshot: Siesta Key Bay Point


PHOTO GALLERY: Siesta Key Bay Point in Sarasota

The northern area of Siesta Key that lies along Midnight Pass Road, just after the turn-off from Higel Avenue, has the legal designation of Siesta Beach but it is actually a collection of several subdivisions. One of them, Siesta Key Bay Point, is a charming enclave of high-end waterfront homes developed with boating in mind.

Boats big and small are found behind the homes of Siesta Key Bay Point. (Staff photo / Harold Bubil)

Boats big and small are found behind the homes of Siesta Key Bay Point. (Staff photo / Harold Bubil)

Sandwiched between Cocoanut Bayou to the north and the Grand Canal to the south, Bay Point has 44 homes. Forty-two of them have private docks, either on canals or directly facing Roberts Bay, offering convenient, deep-water access to the Intracoastal Waterway without having to go under any bridges.

The beautiful bayside vistas range from glimpses of downtown Sarasota across the North Bridge, to Oyster Bay directly across on the mainland, to Skier's Island. That uninhabited nature preserve in the Intracoastal Waterway got its name because it is a popular spot for water skiers.

Bay Point is beautifully landscaped throughout, with mature palms, banyan and oak trees, and dense foliage separating it from Midnight Pass Road and Mangrove Point Road next door, giving the community a quiet, secluded, nestled atmosphere. While not gated, it is one of the few deed-restricted neighborhoods on Siesta Key. Its annual homeowners' association fee of $450 is remarkably low for a subdivision filled with million-dollar homes.

Bay Point was developed in the late 1950s and early 1960s, when Siesta Key was still a sleepy Florida barrier island. At the time, MacKinlay Kantor, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "Andersonville," lived on the key and complained the place becoming too crowded and "Yankeefied."

A few of the original single-story ranch houses still stand in the neighborhood, but the community underwent substantial redevelopment as land values skyrocketed there. Most of the homes now are two-story luxury mansions. Designs range from Spanish and Mediterranean villas with red clay-tile roofs to Key West- and Caribbean Island-style houses with metal roofs.

In fact, Bay Point is home to some of Sarasota's most spectacular waterfront buildings.

One of them, currently listed by Karen Cash Greco, a Realtor with Michael Saunders & Co., at $8.4 million, is an elevated two-story, 11,436-square-feet mansion. Built in 2008 in a Martha's Vineyard-inspired design, it has five bedroom suites, tongue-and-groove wooden ceilings, pecky cypress interior walls, a coral stone fireplace, remote controls on blinds and chandeliers, marble floors and counter tops, and magnificent views from every room.

According to Greco, the neighborhood is popular with boating people who want to be on the north end of the key.

"The ease of access to the mainland makes it special. Even though you're on the barrier island, you don't have to be caught up in beach traffic," she said. "You're just as close to downtown as some of the West of the Trail neighborhoods."

Residents are a mix of local doctors and attorneys, people who have homes elsewhere and families with children, who like the proximity to Out-of-Door Academy on the key.

With only 44 houses in the neighborhood, properties come on the market intermittently. Since 2009, only five sales have been completed, the most recent in April, when a potential teardown went for $549,900.

Currently, two properties are for sale, the one listed by Greco at 859 Siesta Key Circle and a vintage Key West-style cottage at 757 Siesta Key Circle priced at $949,000.

A new home is under construction at the very tip of a small peninsula on the mouth of the Grand Canal. Michael K. Walker and Associates is building it.

Last modified: July 6, 2013
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