- Jul 22, 2019
- 4 min read
The irresistible allure of downtown Naples is known worldwide. For area residents and visitors alike, the downtown district’s magical combination of sun-kissed beaches, an eclectic assortment of shopping and gallery venues, sumptuous eateries, and late-night gathering places has a magnetic appeal that cannot be denied. Yet, for all its charm and unmistakable vibrancy, there are elements within the downtown scene that have, by virtue of geography or happenstance, remained disconnected and, in many ways, inaccessible to those who cherish an urban-like, walk-able lifestyle in a luxurious condominium setting. Until now. .
The award-winning Ronto Group’s vision for Naples Square at the corner of Goodlette-Frank Road and 5th Avenue South has been grounded in the desire to create a place that offers a walkable, bikeable lifestyle that puts downtown Naples at the community’s doorstep. As the residents of the completed Phases I and II residences have discovered, Ronto’s vision is now a reality that will continue to evolve as Phases III and IV are completed. By night, the bike racks in the secure parking garage at the Phase I and Phase II buildings are full, ready to fulfill the next day’s adventures. Residents enjoy the cool evening breezes as they stroll past the lighted fountains and finely manicured streetscape on Naples Square’s redesigned segment of 3rd Avenue South, making their way to the eclectic shopping and gallery venues, eateries, and late-night gathering places just a short walk away on 5th Avenue South, at Bayfront, or at Tin City. For the first time, the entire downtown district is enjoying a level of connectivity that offers new possibilities, not only for residents of Naples Square, but also for downtown’s residents and visitors who are intent on enjoying every facet of Naples from Bayfront west to the beach.
Connection and accessibility to all facets of downtown living are at the heart of Ronto’s vision at Naples Square. In keeping with that vision, Ronto is developing plans for The Shoppes at Naples Square, a combination of retail and restaurant space that will be developed on the eastern edge of the Naples Square site. The project will compliment and complete Naples Square’s walkable lifestyle. Ronto anticipates retail openings in 2019. Gulfshore Playhouse has completed its purchase of a three-acre tract on the northern end of the Naples Square property. As planned, Gulfshore Playhouse will build a multimillion-dollar, 56,000 square feet complex that will include two theaters and an education wing to support programming for children, adults and families.
Naples Square is not only uniting the downtown district, but also enhancing the allure of the entire area. The community’s site plan by Matthew Kragh, AIA, owner of MHK Architecture & Planning, ties Naples Square into the fabric of the Old Naples street grid system and into the current and future plans of the Naples Pathway Committee and the City of Naples. Even as it has established a new level of connectivity for downtown, Naples Square has also enriched the district’s visual appeal. The landscape design along the redesigned segment of 3rd Avenue South was created by Christian Andrea of Architectural Land Design, Inc. Andrea’s design has brought a park-like ambiance to Naples Square while merging pavered roadways, entry water features, and the fountain roundabouts with Washingtonia and Medjool Date palm trees and a mix of plantings. Oak trees will ultimately create a canopy to provide shade and further soften the building mass. Plantings that will perform well in Naples’ heat and humidity are also incorporated in the design, and include Clusia, Variegated Dwarf Schefflera, and Bougainvillea. Asian Jasmine, a carpet-like ground cover, is used in the pedestrian areas. Naples Square’s key intersections, crossings, and building entry features are identified by tall palms. Building corners that are adjacent to the community’s roundabouts are softened by tall, scattered height Washingtonia palms.
MHK’s mixture of Bermuda, British West Indies, and Coastal Contemporary architectural styles is bringing a timeless flavor to Naples Square. The design maintains the integrity of the residential units’ view corridors while presenting a new downtown landmark. Naples Square’s u-shaped buildings will be situated with their open ends facing one another. The juxtaposition of the buildings allowed Kragh to create amenity courtyards over each building’s parking level. The courtyard amenity decks feature a resort-style heated swimming pool and spa, sundeck, pavilion bar with gas grills, and a gas fire table with seating. Each building will have its own pool and club room and there will be two fitness centers. Andrea’s amenity deck landscape design incorporates green spaces, Asian Jasmine ground cover, raised-planters with date palms, and arbors with vine plantings to create a garden-like effect. Additional planters provide a colorful note of separation between the terraces of the garden level residences and the edges of the plaza. Ronto is accepting purchase agreements for Phase III residences. Eight Phase III floor plans range from 1,460 to 3,238 square feet under air and are priced from $695,000. The one and two-story, two and three-bedroom plus den plans include open-concept living areas and open-air terraces. The plans feature 10’ ceilings, designer kitchens, chic owners’ bedrooms and designer flooring. The Phase III kitchens will feature an enhanced appliance package with a gas cooktop and hood and a wall mounted oven and microwave. Phase III purchase agreements worth nearly $32 million have been processed and construction of the Phase III building is expected to start in 4th quarter of this year.