MELISSA FOLLOWELL, LAKEWOOD RANCH - Lakewood Ranch's newest development, The Lake Club, offers a new level of luxury.
John Cannon Homes' Camira model is one of the development's showcase homes and there is not a bad seat in the house.
Located on the end of the semi-circular enclave of custom homes, the corner lot provides vistas from many different locations.
Whether it's the breathtaking view through two stories of windows that are visible upon stepping into the foyer, or the view from one of the home's many balconies, there is no mistaking the fact that designers paid careful attention to aesthetics both inside and out. The 4,868-square-foot home offers four bedrooms and 4½ baths. The bedrooms are scattered throughout the home, giving each one a feeling of privacy.
Besides the view of the pool and lake beyond, visible from the foyer and dining room, the home provides scenery all its own.
It's hard to take in every detail of the home on first glance. From the intricate mural built into the living room's stone fireplace to the tile inlay on the rise of each stair, there is always something new to see.
Look left from the foyer and find the staircase, which marries wood, tile and wrought iron railings. Just beyond that, there is a view of the dining room through an arched hallway flanked by columns. The most striking aspect of the dining room cannot be seen from the foyer, but adds an extra air of drama upon entering it. The room has the same 25 foot ceilings found in the foyer and living room. Curved floor-to-ceiling windows overlook the lushly landscaped yard.
An arched doorway leads from the dining room through a pass-through butler's pantry and bar area straight into the kitchen. That is just one of many aspects of the home's design that make it ideal for entertaining. Wine connoisseurs will be able to store up to 800 bottles of their favorite beverages in the wine room.
While the formal areas of the house have an elegant flair, the home still has a warm, inviting feeling. Warmth seems to radiate from the kitchen and family room. The rooms open up into each other, with floor details providing the feeling of separation.
The kitchen, which has a more rustic, almost French cottage feel, features a teak island, named the home's best feature during the Parade of Homes. A glass tile backsplash makes the wall behind the stove sparkle. The tile from the kitchen is carried out past the bar, where an octagon of wood flooring then frames the lushly carpeted family room.
Upstairs, another area perfect for casual or more formal entertaining is the bonus room. There is room for both a billiards table and a home theater. Open up the doors onto the 631-square-foot lanai and maximize the space further.
Rather than having an outdoor kitchen and bar downstairs near the pool, those added features are upstairs. Access to the pool is a snap, though, for those hanging out upstairs. A spiral staircase leads from the pool to the upstairs lanai.
Perhaps one of the most striking views in the home is from the bridge on the second floor. The two stories of windows that create a sense of awe from downstairs are no less impressive from the second floor. Two of the guest bedrooms are also upstairs, each with a view of their own.
Downstairs in the master suite, just to the right of the foyer, find a relaxing private retreat. Long windows reaching almost floor to ceiling throughout the room give an almost panoramic view and are spaced apart to provide plenty of wall space for art and furniture. The focal point of the master bath is the sunken bathtub, framed by two rounded stairs.
While the exterior of the Camira is Mediterranean, the home's interior showcases many different styles but never loses its sense of cohesiveness.