By Debbie Flessner
Tucked behind an unassuming 1960s block building that serves as an office is a five-acre Gulf front community unlike any other on Siesta Key.
Aloha Kai was built in 1964, and currently consists of 68 private villas and apartments. But while the structures on the property are primarily original, and are seemingly a throwback to a much earlier era, the community is well-maintained and has retained its unfettered access to the snowy white Siesta Key sand.
Bob Ruiz of Key Solutions Real Estate said there are several reasons why there have only been three sales in the community in the past year, and there are currently only two units for sale there.
“It has a location on Siesta Key that is less than a mile up from the south bridge,” he said. “It’s also on Crescent Beach and that fine white sand. Plus, it has a liberal short-term rental policy, which makes the property a great investment with strong rental income.”
Key Solutions’ owner/broker Susan Saltalamacchia is the listing agent for one of the two Aloha Kai listings. Number 46 is a freestanding bungalow, and with its original, shiny terrazzo floors and modern, yet retro, furnishings, it’s certain to be a sought after acquisition for a lucky investor.
The current owner of the unit lives out-of-state, and used to stay in it only a few times a year. For the past six years, Saltalamacchia and her partner Michelle Borysek have managed the property for the owner, and have rented it for the family during the times they haven’t needed to use it.
Saltalamacchia explained that in many ways, Aloha Kai is not a typical Siesta Key rental community.
“It’s not a condominium complex, it’s a co-op, which means that the owner gets stock in the corporation,” she said. “It’s also kind of secluded, and has deeded beach access and beach chairs set out just for the residents.”
Number 46 is being sold furnished, and potential buyers will no doubt love the way the current owners have managed to marry the mid-sixties vibe of the building with new interior furnishings.
There is a parking pad on the side of the villa, allowing vehicles to be stowed off-street. From there, the entry door opens up into a comfortable Florida room, with large windows meant to open up to refreshing Gulf breezes. Once inside the living room, modern furniture is reminiscent of an earlier time, and inside a console under the TV is even a record player, which will appeal to both folks who grew up with vinyl and those of newer generations who are just beginning to learn about it.
In addition to a table and chairs, the dining room also holds a double desk, in case you just can’t get away from work during your stay at the beach. There is a small, but well-equipped kitchen, one bedroom and a completely renovated bathroom, with fashionable glass-tiled walls. The whole villa is painted in a calming seafoam green color, which contributes to its relaxing, island feel.
Out the back door is a little patio with a table, chairs and grill, perfect for al fresco lunches, dinners and drinks.
Borysek says that Aloha Kai is a favorite destination for visitors who request the same units for rental year after year. Part of the reason they keep coming back is the many amenities that are available to them.
“It has the biggest pool on Siesta Key—Olympic-sized and heated,” she said. “So year-round, people get both the beach and the pool.
Alongside the pool, there is a large game/community room, a shuffleboard court, laundry facilities and an on-site rental office. The property is also well-located, almost mid-way along the island. For those who don’t care to drive to either the Siesta or Crescent Villages, the Siesta Key Breeze trolley has a pickup point directly in front of the complex.
Most units at the Aloha Kai have been purchased for investment purposes, and then placed in a rental program like the one at Key Solutions. Saltalamacchia says that the property holds quite a special attraction for both the owners and vacation renters.
“Investors love it because these units have a three-night minimum stay,” she said. “So this unit we have for sale, you can rent out as many times a year as you want. And our owner, because he and his family used his three or four times a year, put especially nice furnishings in it.”
For most Siesta Key rentals in other communities, the County Zoning Code only allows for one rental every 30 days, so the three-night, unlimited numbers of times a year rule for Aloha Kai is a big perk.
As the lowest-priced out of only two real estate listings in Aloha Kai, Saltalamacchia said she doesn’t feel #46 will be on the market for much longer. The listing price is $405,900.
“These may have been built in the sixties, but they are well-located and really cute,” she said. “Plus, there are just not a lot of new condos being built around here anymore.”
Aloha Kai is located at 6020 Midnight Pass Road, on Siesta Key. To learn more about the community and #46, contact Key Solutions Real Estate, at 941-544-3299.