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Get to know Watercolor

Watercolor, one of the newest planned communities on the Florida Gulf Coast, has done something groundbreaking — it’s designed to look like Florida rather than Cape Cod or the Caribbean, a neighborhood of wide porches and long eaves that are perfect for lounging in the warm afternoons. That doesn’t mean it’s afraid to co-opt the best of other designs, though, and the streets are wide, the landscape is lush, and the amenities are absolutely top-notch. The Watercolor Inn may just be the nicest beach hotel on the Gulf, and that attention to detail carries through the whole community. Building is ongoing so not everything is in place yet, but the retail and restaurant options currently operating are stellar. One place that won’t be developed is Grayton Beach State Park, a stunningly wild and beautiful place full of lakes and wildlife, and an easy stroll or bike ride from the heart of Watercolor.
Nearby Neighborhoods:
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Living on the Emerald Coast

If the Northwest Coast of Florida has been overlooked, it’s because it’s just perfectly out of the way. Compared to other parts of the state, the scale of things is smaller and development came later, so the white-sand communities here seem thoughtfully planned rather than hodgepodge legacies of land rushes. Though the feel (and the traffic) is less metropolitan, today’s Northwest has plenty of top-notch culture, exceptional restaurants, and incredible retail experiences. This is a natural wonderland in its own distinct way, with wide rivers flowing through thick forests, vast stretches of preserved parkland, and a variety of beaches — from wild and rugged to picture-perfect strips of white. There’s plenty of golf and tennis, but the focus is on the pristine water and a boating culture that runs from yachts to fishing boats to kayaks, and from deep water to grassy flats to sparkling bays — and to the requisite bayous, teeming with waterfowl and fish. The sand is softer, the summer’s a little cooler, and the reservations are a little easier to come by — but it’s still 100 percent Florida.

Schools and Transportation

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