Tour of Homes a huge success
PAT COPELAND | SUN
The infinity pool at House #5 melts into Tampa Bay
HOLMES BEACH – The day dawned bright and beautiful, as people lined up to board two shuttle buses and a van for the Community Center's 19th annual Tour of Homes.
"It's our fifth tour," Mary Reese said of she and her sister-in-law Susan as they waited for the shuttle. "It's what we plan to do every year. We love it. You get to see some beautiful homes."
"I like to look at homes and see the Island style," said Sue Omnes, also in line.
Home # 1 at 205 66th St. had a light airy kitchen/dining room with a fish lampshade and fish art on the walls. One bedroom sported palm tree accents and another had fish and shell accents, with a starfish curtain catching everyone's eye.
"This is my kind of place – nautical," exclaimed Colleen Sherrard.
"We love it. Its' so fresh, light and airy," said Kathy Default.
"It's gorgeous," added her friend Joyce Harlan.
In House #2 at 212 68th St., bottles of sand from beaches over the U.S. and the islands that lined shelves just inside the doorway and a pirate themed office with a skeleton were hits with tour goers. Shell framed mirrors lined a window mantle in the guest room and a shell tri-fold screen graced the bedroom.
"I love how they accessorized everything to highlight every room," Georgene Bozzo said. "The colors all came together."
The high ceiling above a wood dining table was striking in House #3 at 534 70th St. Tour goers liked the big bathrooms with large oval tubs and the built-in beds upstairs with TV screens. A deck off the master bedroom upstairs had a breathtaking view of Bimini Bay, and the patio downstairs sported an outdoor kitchen, bath, infinity pool and waterfall.
"It's a great house," Gary Patterson said. "Well done and very well appointed."
"It was amazing, but it had a lot of stairs," exclaimed Fenella Townsend with a laugh.
House #4 at 508 72nd St. had a game room upstairs overlooking a large mural featuring the Sunshine Skyway, the Anna Maria City pier, boats and bay views and even the pink polka dot house of Sally Woodward and Julie Quinlivan. A favorite was the concrete counter embedded with shells and sea glass in the bathroom.
"It's beautiful," I've never seen anything like that before," Karen Gingrich said of the counter.
Shells, sea creatures, palm trees and mermaids reigned in House #5 at 615 Key Royale Drive, which was decorated in soothing blues and greens. One standout was a mirror bordered in tiles featuring turtles, fish and shells. Upstairs, a balcony offered a spectacular view of the Sunshine Skyway and downstairs an infinity pool melted into Tampa Bay.
"You can't beat the location," Mary Heinle exclaimed.
"You can see the Skyway," Carol Hazlett added.
House #6 rounded out the tour and featured an unusual kitchen counter.
"It's made of engineered stone called Zodiaq by DuPont," explained tour guide Sandy Carrier. "It's 93 percent quartz crystal mixed with resin and colored to your liking."
Summing it up, Ann Secrest, who was with a group of fellow teachers from Michigan, said, "I thought all of the homes were beautiful. I'm so glad we took the tour. We got a lot of decorating ideas."
Her friend Kay Reynolds added, "It was a very beautiful tour."
The tour of homes welcomed 1,100 visitors, a record number. Harold Bergstrom, of Key Royale, was the quilt winner. The tour, the quilt raffle and the boutique grossed $40,000.