John Krzyminski is not a Disney annual passholder.
“And my parents are probably upset about that,” he laughs.
Krzyminski, newly hired director of the Central Florida retail team at Cite Partners, comes from dedicated Disneyphile stock; his family has been vacationing here for the past 30 years. And while he calls himself “more conservative on the Disney front” than the rest of his family, he’s grateful for its presence here in Orlando, which serves as a wonderful carrot to get loved ones back home to visit.
Winters here are decidedly more palatable than those of the Chicago suburb from which he hails, but it was on a summer job in Sarasota, clerking for a real estate attorney, when the Florida bug really bit.
Krzyminski was on a path toward a law career back then. His father’s practice specialized in real estate and construction. He, too, had a mind for it, and planned to follow suit. Late in the game however, the would-be attorney realized that law school would end up a stepping stone to a successful career in commercial real estate.
“Once back in Chicago, I began working with some brokers from Marcus & Millichap,” he explains. “They seemed to be having a little bit more fun doing what they were doing and once my fiancée took a job in Orlando, I thought that instead of taking the Bar down in Florida, I’d see how brokerage was.”
His first position with Marcus & Millichap was indeed fun – and fruitful.
“I was very successful, and I attribute a lot of that to my law school experience and to growing up with an attorney in the family – so, thanks, Dad!” he chuckles. “Having the legal background really helped me accelerate in the brokerage business because I was looking at a lot of leases and contracts and had a really good understanding of the process…. I can give clients the benefit of that knowledge and experience to make sure they’re secure and getting the best deal they possibly can.”
He never did take the Bar exam, but he has no regrets.
“I think if I had, I’d have felt committed to being an attorney,” he says. “I have an entrepreneurial spirit; this is the right path for me.”
Now two-plus years into life in Orlando, he and wife, Ashley – a physician at ORMC – love the convenience of downtown life on the edge of Lake Eola. Krzyminski says the college crowd is up late; he’s usually in bed by 10 p.m.
“I wanted that downtown feel because I was young,” says the not-quite-30-year-old, “but I guess I’m not as young as I thought I was! It gets a little loud at night…. I sometimes feel like we’re a 60-year-old, 30-year-old couple!”
They are active, however, and especially enthusiastic about their involvement with the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America program. Ashley’s little sister is 14, John’s little brother is 7; the two are real-life siblings and the Krzyminskis enjoy the mentoring immensely – whether individually, together or as part of the organization's planned events.
“My little brother loves to be outside. He loves mini-golf. He loves basketball. He thinks he likes going to the movies, but after about 15 minutes he wants to be up and doing something else,” Krzyminski laughs. We’re working on that.” They spend lots of time at the Orlando Science Center and even took a trip out to the Kennedy Space Center. “He loves science; that was a good time.”
Hot off the heels of a honeymoon in Thailand (the pair married in November), they’re eager for more travel. A trip to Croatia is already on the books for 2017. Other Bucket List journeys include an African safari and a trip to Poland; both he and his wife – not surprising for Chicago-area natives – are of Polish ancestry.
Alas, Epcot doesn’t rep Poland, but a few Orlando-metro restaurants do. And in the spare hours two active young professionals can cobble together, the Krzyminskis will seek them out while he settles into his new position at Cite.
“I see it like a family,” he says of the firm’s M.O. “The people here are very humble, they’re very good at what they do and they focus on building a team environment for the client…. They’ve been doing phenomenal things in the market with office and industrial and I’m hoping to do the same for their retail, as well.”