Gulf Home was a unique experience. The property was situated on a hammock, or island, in the middle of salt flats north of the Withlacoochee River. The sense of isolation was dramatic.
We accessed the property through private road through the salt flats. In a week, we saw only five cars pass on the private access road (to the only other property along the road), and mostly heard (rather than saw) boats in the distance.
To reach the house from a parking area under palms, we crossed a 300 foot boardwalk.
The boardwalk traversed a tidal stream. From the boardwalk and deck we could look out over endless salt flats and hammocks, with the Gulf in the distance. We watched sea and coastal birds, watched the oystermen work their beds in the distance, fished for redfish from the boardwalk, and enjoyed spectacular sunsets. The cool February temperatures and coastal breezes kept the bugs down, and the house has a wrap around screen porch with postcard views within which to retreat if the bugs attack.
From the outside, the house looks like "Old Florida" -- a cedar or cypress lapped wood stilt house with screened porch, deck, boardwalk, and screened lanai on the lower level. But the interior was updated and upscale: new appliances and granite countertops, flat screen with satellite service, open concept living room, kitchen and dining room separated only by a native Florida limestone fireplace (not yet functional). The two bedrooms and two full baths on the main floor were roomy, modern and comfortable.
When we had a couple of minor inconveniences (Internet access, bed in master BR), the owners were readily accessible and anxious to help.
This rental is for people who love nature and are comfortable living in it. For those people, however, it is a special experience.
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