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Resort at Marina Village opens with ceremony

By Staff | Nov 13, 2009

Five long years of hard work came to an end Thursday night when Bob Hensley cut the ribbon on his $160 million Resort at Marina Village.
The resort development, which is attached to Tarpon Point Marina, boasts 19 floors of one-, two- and three-bedroom, fully furnished condominiums which overlook the Caloosahatchee.
For Hensley and crew, the ribbon-cutting was a long time coming.
“It’s finally here. A lot of hard work has gotten us to this point,” he said. “It’s something I think the city needed, and I hope the city will truly embrace this development.”
Mike Quaintance, president of the Chamber of Commerce of Cape Coral, is already embracing the resort, which is managed by Sunstream Hotels & Resorts.
Sunstream also manages properties in Naples and on Fort Myers Beach.
“It’s great to have a venue like this,” Quaintance said. “We need destinations in the Cape, we need to diversify our economy.”
It remains to be seen whether the resort will provide a much needed shot in the arm to the Cape’s economy, but it is already helping to provide jobs.
A job fair during the summer brought thousands out in hopes of finding a job, something that has been increasingly difficult in Lee County, which now has a 14 percent unemployment rate.
Resort general manager Gary Locke said there would be more hiring events in the future if business takes off.
He said things have started slowly, but since the soft opening Nov. 2, there have been some surprises.
“The walk-in business has been a huge surprise … we’ve had people from as far away as Germany,” Locke said.
Thursday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony drew people from around the community, some curious, others excited to see the new resort finally open its doors for business.
David Slothower, a Cape resident since 1995, echoed the sentiments of Quaintance.
Having lived close to the development for many years, Slothower watched over the years as the resort took shape.
“It means a big step forward in bringing the Cape alive,” he said. “It helps to make it a destination.”