Casey Key – Island in the Sun
The narrow island of Casey Key is a special kind of tropical paradise. This is one of the places where the “old Florida charm” could be preserved. 99% of the buildings are single-family homes of all sizes. No chain hotel or noisy beach resorts was able to set foot on the island, only charming and luxurious estate homes. There is a handful of little rental places at the south end of the island. They are basically little cottages for rent, but that is the whole commercial activity on this subtropical paradise.
So, this 9 mile long narrow and exclusive enclave, called Casey Key, has not a lot going on – and that is exactly what most of its residents want. There is only one long and winding road on the island. By crossing the historic Blackburn Point Road Bridge you reach the northern tip of the island.
Follow the road all the way down to the southern end and you will experience a beautiful scenic drive. You will drive through a canopy of old-growth palms, pine and oak trees, and you’ll catch glimpses of everything from massive modern mansions to modest old beach homes from the 20’s. The bridge at the southern end of the island is a modern draw bridge.Once you’ve crossed that bridge you are on the mainland again.
Many native plants have been left as landscaping and there are very few lawns. Here and there you can catch a glimpse of the beach or the Gulf of Mexico. In certain spots the island is so narrow that you can see the Gulf of Mexico on one side and the Intracoastal Waterway on the other one.
A beautiful place with little to none commercial activity – this is Casey Key
Most of the homes are either facing the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Mexico or the Intracoastal Waterway. Many of the homes are not even noticeable because they are tucked away behind thick tropical foliage. Before the island ends there are two places worth mentioning. One is Nokomis Beach, a long expanse of sand on the west (Gulf) side of the island. The other one is a popular hang-out spot for beachcombers, anglers and boaters alike, called Venice Jetty. This little canal is connecting the Gulf of Mexico and the Intracoastal Waterway and it is separating Casey Key from the Island of Venice.
Almost zero Commercial Activity
The last 2 miles is the only two mile long section of the island where the island dwellers have to give up a fraction of their exclusiveness. Only here have the “intruders” from the mainland access to the Gulf of Mexico and to the Intracoastal Waterway. Only here some basic “commercial activity” is tolerated. All vacation rentals are privately owned mom-and pop style motels. Nothing fancy. No high risers are obstructing the beautiful view. All quiet, no party time. Only at the Jetty Park you will find a concession stand and a tiny snack stall where you can buy a cold beer and a sandwich. All of this does not interfere with the local population on Casey Key at all.
Does all this mean that you are in danger of dying of starvation while on the island? Not really. After crossing either the north or south bridge you will automatically run into restaurants already. Our favorite restaurant is the “Casey Key Fish House” just after crossing the historic north bridge. There is also a nice Tiki Bar next to it where you can enjoy a nice drink while watching the sun go to rest.
Real Estate on Casey Key
Homes on Casey Key range from simple beach villas to sprawling Gulf front estates with private beach access to the Golf of Mexico. Less than 500 homes are on Casey Key, and there are only very few build-able lots left on the island.
Full-time and part-time residents from all around the world enjoy their private and quiet sanctuary. However, the island is only minutes away from all the culture, shopping, restaurants and amenities the cities of Sarasota and Venice have to offer.
There is a wide variety of homes for sale on Casey Key: sizes are ranging from little cottages to big homes with several thousand square feet under air. Even if it is a “little cottage” – don’t expect to get a deal below $400,000 on Casey Key. That’s just how it is on islands. Space is scarce and an island can not expand in any direction. There is always water.
If you are interested in other Barrier Islands on the West Coast of Florida, go ahead and explore them here.
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