My parents bought this 1950's ranch house on AMI in 1964 and my idyllic childhood began! The streets were paved with crushed shell, we kids never wore shoes, and when asphalt finally came to the Island we'd challenge each other to stand barefooted on the black tar longest. We never went into town (Bradenton) -- there was no bus and we couldn't drive and it was too far to bike -- so we spent our time out of AMI Elementary at the beaches and marinas and boat docks. Cobb's Marina -- near where the Holmes twins lived -- had about 2,000 cats! We'd go from daylight until dark outside -- usually called in at lunchtime by Betsy's mom for soup and sandwiches -- and our parents never seemed to worry much. After all, where could we go? (FYI - Betsy's mom cut the crust off our sandwiches and gave it to us to feed to the wild peacocks who populated the island and scared us awake at night with their "baby screams.") AMI has changed a lot since then, but not in the important things. People are still genuinely glad that you're here!
This house was the first built on this block in the early 1950's and is placed on the largest lot facing easterly toward the Gulf of Mexico. It is situated west of Gulf Drive in Holmes Beach, so there are no busy streets to cross on your way to the beach, which is only four neighbors away. There are three large bedrooms with king, queen, and two twin beds respectively, and another twin bed on the large back porch. All beds are adjustable SleepNumber beds, and each bedroom has a flat-screen tv with Roku. The pine paneling of the queen bedroom is original to the house, as are the hand-applied plaster ceilings in the bedrooms. The queen bedroom contains furniture salvaged from the historic Hotel Dixie-Grande, which opened in Bradenton in the 1920's and was (sadly) imploded in the 1970's. There is a large bath adjacent to the master with a double vanity and walk-in shower, and the hall bath has a full tub and shower with marble vanity. The plumbing, roof, a/c, and all major systems are newly-renovated.
The large living room is adjacent to the main entry and has a large picture window for viewing passers-by, which often include shorebirds and great flocks of escaped budgies, parrots, and love birds. If you set the white bird by the front door outside in the yard, chances are his friends will come by to visit! There is also a green swing feeder by the large tree out front where you may leave food for the squirrels, who may scold you if you don't. There's lots of comfortable seating in the living room, and you don't have to worry (much) if your suit is wet. There's a big-screen tv with 200+ cable channels and a Roku, and free wireless internet throughout the house. The tray ceiling in the living room, the unusually-colored fireplace, and the jalousie windows are all original "Old Florida" details, which we hope you enjoy.
There's a dining table for four next to the full-sized kitchen with new stainless appliances and plenty of room for multiple cooks at the same time. If you have a big family (or just a family who all prefer to eat differently) there is ample room to prepare your own dishes and save on eating out. The 'frig is full-sized, and we have a great Publix on the Island to help you stock it. The kitchen has a pass-through window to the "tiki" bar on the back porch (it is actually wearing a grass skirt), and the double-sliding glass door to the back porch opens all the way. Please feel free to play any of the many board games, cards, checkers, etc.
There's a full-sized washer and dryer, as well as a sink, in the large laundry room adjacent to the porch. The porch itself runs 2/3 of the length of the house, and is wonderful for relaxing, reading, and game-playing. The back yard is large enough for soccer practice (IMG Academy!!), privacy fenced, and filled with fragrant plumeria, fruit trees, and Florida green anoles (lizards, they're heck on mosquitos but harmless to humans). There's a glass-topped table, umbrella, and chairs for the back yard, and many items for the beach including a beach cart. There are two bikes and helmets for your convenience.
AND BEST OF ALL!! NO STEPS TO CLIMB!! There are only two small steps at the front entrance (the same at the back door) to negotiate. Everything in the house is on the ground level!
Location, location, location!! Holmes Beach is the central city on AMI, which is approximately ten miles long at the longest point and three miles wide at the widest point. Joy Abounds is proximate to the Anna Maria Elementary School, on the opposite side of Gulf Drive, right in the middle of AMI. The Manatee County Beach is five blocks south and the S&S Plaza (and other retail centers) are five blocks north. Both are an easy walk, especially if you walk along the beach. You can catch the FREE Island Trolley (it takes your bike too) all along Gulf Drive and go anywhere on the Island. Publix is just past the Manatee County Beach to the south and west and is also an easy walk, but better to take a car and not melt the ice cream!
ESPECIALLY FOR OUR VISITORS FROM EUROPE: The Gulf Beaches of AMI have squeaky white "sugar" sand, clear cool green water, and friendly waves. Vastly different from Atlantic beaches, the Gulf beaches are more like those of Tunesia, Morocco, and the Canary Islands WITHOUT the crowds (because your season is our off-season!) Norwegian Air is flying discounted flights to the US right now, so AMI has never been more convenient and affordable. And fyi, AMI has NEVER been hit by a hurricane in its 150+ populated years!
We'd love to have you and your family and friends stay with us at "Joy Abounds" on your next trip to AMI! Thanks for your consideration!