Naples, Florida is often referred to as the Paradise Coast and for good reason. The white sandy beaches, the swaying palm trees, flowers that appear as if they’ve been hand-painted by a divine source, all of which are nestled comfortably on the serene shores of the Gulf of Mexico. A place where year-round 80 degree weather keeps the greens glowing in a city that has more golf courses per capita and extends the greetings at the busiest private jet port in the world.

The economy of Naples is largely based on tourism, with the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, Vineyards, Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, Marco Island and the Evergaldes National Park all within reasonable driving distance. Key West being nothing more than a short boat ride to visit the island. Downtown Naples is home to The Naples Players, Philharmonic Center for the Arts, The Gulfshore Playhouse, and the 5th Avenue South, Mercato, and 3rd Street South shopping districts, which feature a variety of antique shops. Gallery Row, also downtown, is a concentration among the numerous art galleries spread throughout the downtown area. The Village on Venetian Bay is an upscale open-air shopping district on the Gulf coast. Located directly off of Tamiami Trail are the Waterside Shops, an upscale open-air center home to such high-end retailers as Saks Fifth Avenue, Gucci, Tiffany & Co., and Lacoste. A two-story Barnes and Noble is located on site as well. Near downtown on Naples Bay and the Gordon River is the shopping district Tin City. This open-air shopping center specializes in antiques and handmade local novelties. Also near downtown is Big Cypress Market Place with over 100 diverse vendors. Naples hosts The Oliver Group Champions Cup of the Outback Champions Tennis Series each year, as well as swamp buggy races, held three times a year at the Florida Sports Park.

Hotels abound in this Gulf Coast Shangri-La, including notable resorts such as the Hampton Inn Naples I-75, two Ritz-Carltons, the Naples Beach Hotel and Golf Club, La Playa Beach and Golf Resort, the Naples Grande Beach Resort and Club, the Inn on Fifth and the Edgewater Beach Hotel and Club.

While visiting Naples might be fun for a week or two, or even a month, the luxury real estate available in Naples is truly the main attraction to this harbor of utopian lifestyles. From the Aqualane Shores, a noted boater’s dream hole, to the Mediterrean-style homes of Grey Oaks, an exclusive 54-hole championship golf-course community located in the heart of Naples. Pelican Bay is 2100 acres of single-family homes, villas, condos and assisted living communities all within a par 5 reach of 36 holes of golf and exquisite dining. The Tuscany Reserve is the most recent development in the area, inspired by the beautiful, tranquil countryside of Tuscany, Italy. It includes 466 acres of community with 300 home sites, all reminiscent of Tuscany from the home styles and architecture to the brick-paved lined streets and stoneworks of the plazas, fountains and island Piazzas.

It’s easy to see why Naples has become the home or “home away from home” for many celebrities and notable figures in American history, such as astronaut Buzz Aldrin, Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, NFL coaches Mike Ditka and Dave Wannstedt, rock artist, Bob Seger and former U.S. Senator, Dick Gephardt. Naples provides an heir of tranquility and a sense of heaven ushered in from the smells and sounds of the nearby coast that successfully carries its residents towards the nirvana they seek. A Paradise Coast, indeed.