South Florida developer Carlos Balzola, best known for some of Kissimmee’s most successful motel conversions, is taking on another project in the Four Corners area of Osceola County.
Balzola’s Miami-based ICM Development will complete the long-stalled Bahama Bay condominium community on Florence Villa Grove Road in the county’s Westside Boulevard corridor. Balzola told GrowthSpotter he and his partner now own 157 of the 160 existing condominium units, as well as 24.6 acres of undeveloped land. The plan is to complete the community and operate it as a rental community with the long-term goal of eventually selling it. Renovations are underway on the 12-year-old buildings that were completed in Phase 1.
In December architect Bruce Arthur with WHA Design filed a Site Development Plan (SDP) with Osceola County on behalf of Balzola to build the final phase of the project, which will add nine new two-story buildings, a guardhouse and the long-awaited pool and clubhouse.
“The clubhouse will be about 4,000 square feet, and it will have a beautiful pool, a gym and some offices,” he said.
The new phase will complete the buildout of Bahama Bay with 244 condo units, a collection of studios, one- and two-bedroom units. The existing condos, mostly built in 2008, are primarily two- and three-bedroom units starting at around 1,200 square feet.
“They’re way too big,” Balzola said. “So we’re bringing in something smaller. It will be more affordable and will bring the right dimension to the project.”
Balzola had previously considered swapping out condos for townhomes in the final phase but opted to keep the existing plan to expedite the development timeline. “We’ve got a construction loan in hand for $25 million,” he said. “We’re just waiting to get the permits and do the land development work. We plan to break ground within the next month.”
Balzola was a partner on the $40 million residential conversion of the former Red Lion hotel on U.S. 192 into Maingate Apartments. Now he and his partners at T2 Capital Management are converting the former Champions World Resort at 8660 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway into workforce housing and will start construction this year on another motel conversion across from Celebration.
Bahama Bay is right across the street from Magnolia at Westside, which was developed by KB Homes and K. Hovnanian Homes. Just west of the county line, Miami-based MAS Development also filed plans in December to build a 224-unit townhouse community on 29 acres.