Bubil: Rosie O'Donnell lists, but more will come


‘But she just got here.” That seemed to be the reaction among many readers to the news that Rosie O’Donnell has listed the Casey Key house she bought in October 2013.

Well, the entertainer and “View” co-host may be leaving the Sarasota area, where the Casey Key house is a second home, or or maybe she won’t. Her people are not saying.

“No comment” was the expected response when I asked one of her Coldwell Banker Realtors, Kevin Vale, about his client’s motivations for selling. Vale has the listing with CB teammate Jill Friedman.

They represented O’Donnell in the purchase of 703 Casey Key Road in 2013, a sale that went down at $5 million.

It says something that the outspoken and controversial comedienne and commentator went back to the same team to sell her house. One thing seems certain: Rosie can trust them not to divulge secrets, if my Vale interview of several days ago is any indication.

Vale-Friedman have the property listed at $5.75 million. Vale said not much has been done to the house, but O’Donnell did expand the estate by buying a slender bayside lot that gives the property the beach-to-bay cachet that is so coveted on Casey Key. She installed landscaping, lifts for personal watercraft and a modest boat dock. A dry slip at Gulf Harbor Marina is part of the sale; it will hold a boat of up to 35 feet.

A walkway over the sand dunes has been added to improve access to the beach.

Getting busy

But even if Casey loses a celebrity, plenty more wealthy buyers are on the way. I am hearing from trusted sources that local Realtors are exceptionally busy — in some cases too busy to return phone calls. “It is crazy out there,” said one of them in an after-hours call.

That observation is backed up by a report from Penske Truck Rental (even though the rich might not be renting trucks).

A few days ago, Penske announced its 2014 list of top moving destinations within the U.S. The Tampa/Sarasota metro area was ranked No. 2 on its list for the second year in a row.

The list is dotted with “warm-weather locales where our business interests have steadily increased,” said Don Mikes, Penske senior vice president of truck rental. Penske’s Top 10 Moving Destinations, with the 2013 ranking noted in parentheses:

1. Atlanta (1)

2. Tampa/Sarasota (2)

3. Dallas/Fort Worth (3)

4. Phoenix (5)

5. Orlando (4)

6. Seattle (7)

7. Denver (9)

8. Houston (6)

9. Chicago (8)

10. Las Vegas (10)

The list is compiled from one-way truck rental reservations.

Harold Bubil

Recipient of the 2015 Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award from the American Institute of Architects/Florida-Caribbean, Harold Bubil is real estate editor of the Herald-Tribune Media Group. Born in Newport, R.I., his family moved to Sarasota in 1958. Harold graduated from Sarasota High School in 1970 and the University of Florida in 1974 with a degree in journalism. For the Herald-Tribune, he writes and edits stories about residential real estate, architecture, green building and local development history. He also is a photographer and public speaker. Contact him via email, or at (941) 361-4805.
Last modified: February 7, 2015
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