A Dream Sarasota Retreat

By Robert Plunket January 27, 2010

My favorite listing right now on Casey Key.


Click here to see our Real Estate Junkie discuss Casey Key on ABC7.

By Robert Plunket


Sarasota has lots of upscale neighborhoods, but none of them can hold a candle to Casey Key. It’s the peak – a small barrier island with ultra-expensive real estate and a list of world-famous residents that has included over the years Stephen King, Martina Navratilova, and the Gotti family. It’s a little set apart from Sarasota both geographically and socially, and although some regular Sarasotans live there, it’s essentially a hideaway for the second (or third) homes of the world’s super rich.


Several years ago Stephen King wrote a book about Casey Key. He fictionalized it as Duma Key – the name of the book – and took some liberties with the geography and population density. It’s about a painter who rents a crumbling mansion (“Big Pink”) and starts to have spooky adventures involving a tragic accident that happened there years ago. By the way, Big Pink really does exist. It’s the southernmost house on Siesta Key (now connected to Casey Key since Midnight Pass closed in a storm about 20 years ago.)



Casey Key is the narrowest island imaginable – at many places it’s only one house wide. A winding road runs north to south, right down the middle. The architecture is an interesting mix of Old Florida that has been modernized and updated, plus enormous new mansions that make the average McMansion look like tract housing. The most expensive house currently on the market is listed at $15,000,000 – reduced from $20,000,000. There’s virtually nothing under a million, and for a decent place expect to spend in the two-and-half to seven million range.



One of my favorite Casey Key houses currently on the market is located at 2007 Casey Key Road. It has the advantage of being right on the beach, meaning you don’t have to cross the street to get to your private stretch of the Gulf of Mexico. It’s relatively new (2002) and at just under 3,000 square feet, it’s a manageable size. The interior is beachy and unpretentious – and believe me, a Casey Key house can get very pretentious indeed. And even though it’s not the least bit spooky, it does have some of the same feeling that the houses described in Duma Key have. It’s very private (walled off from the road) and from almost every room is a spectacular view of the Gulf. The view figures prominently in the plot of the book and is what drew Stephen King to Casey Key in the first place. He calls it the fourth most beautiful place in the world, the top three being places like Machu Picchu and Marrakesh.



The price? $2,950,000. For more information call Sania Allen at 941-266-7829.


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