Gulfshore Business Daily: February 27

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L to R: Frantz Michel, Heidi Roderick, Jim Kelleher, Sue Kelleher, Tom Monaghan, Dr. S. Lacagnina, Tatiana Cancro, Peter Cancro, Gary Tomcik,Monsignor Frank McGrath, Kevin Cieply, Susan Kuhar,  Taryn Vaughn


Homewood Suites by Hilton Fort Myers at Bell Tower Shops has completed a $5 million renovation project. The lobby, dining and lounge areas, all guest suites, meeting facilities and corridors were redesigned and updated. The hotel’s two-room suites with full kitchens now have contemporary décor and feature all new furnishings, beds with upholstered headboards and mattresses with cool gel foam technology, updated flooring, wall coverings, window treatments, and lighting fixtures. Each living and sleeping room in the suites features a 55-inch high-definition television. All suite bathrooms were totally reconstructed and now offer new walk-in showers, upgraded lighting, and the latest efficient fixtures. The meeting space includes new seating, wall coverings, and window treatments. The hotel’s corridors were also remodeled, with new carpet, wall coverings, window treatments, and energy-efficient lighting. Updates were also made to the hotel’s 24-hour Home Office business center, Suite Shop, and guest laundry. Later this year, the hotel’s 24-hour fitness center will undergo a renovation that will introduce new cardio equipment with personal viewing screens, and a new outdoor patio/kitchen with a pergola and upscale seating will be installed.



Bonita Springs-based Discovery Senior Living will kick-off its large-scale expansion of Discovery Village At Sarasota Bay with a groundbreaking ceremony at 11 a.m. today. The event will commemorate the start of construction of a new independent living community specifically designed to empower freedom and lifestyle flexibility for seniors. The nearly $50 million project includes a Grande Clubhouse featuring multiple dining options; Legends Club, a full-service bar and bistro with pizza oven; Discovery Silver Cinema movie theater; and a professional beauty salon, spa, and barbershop with massage services. Available amenities will also include a FitCamp health and fitness center, a zero-entry heated pool with private cabanas, and outdoor entertainment space with a fireplace. Resident accommodations will include 198 apartment homes. The community will also introduce a number of Signature Club apartments with dedicated, underground parking. The community, expected to open in Fall 2021, will be located at 1414 69th Ave. W in Bradenton.


L to R: Frantz Michel, Heidi Roderick, Jim Kelleher, Sue Kelleher, Tom Monaghan, Dr. S. Lacagnina, Tatiana Cancro, Peter Cancro, Gary Tomcik, Monsignor Frank McGrath, Kevin Cieply, Susan Kuhar, Taryn Vaughn


Ave Maria School of Law on Feb. 7 hosted a grand opening event and released the official naming of its new wellness center: Cancro Family Wellness Center. With nearly 300 people in attendance, the event featured a ribbon-cutting, honor guard, and was held in concurrence with the school’s fourth annual Veterans Memorial Celebration. Peter Cancro, CEO and owner of Jersey Mike’s, along with his wife, Tatiana, and family, donated $2 million thereby receiving naming rights to the newest addition to the campus. Both Cancro and his wife attended the grand opening and made remarks. The event also acknowledged the official naming of The Kelleher Firm Basketball Court. Jim Kelleher, a member of Ave Maria Law’s Board of Governors, and his wife, Sue, have been long-time supporters of the school and also attended the event. The wellness center at Ave Maria School of Law is part of the school’s greater mind, body, spirit initiative, “Ave Maria Moves,” which launched in 2019. The construction of this fitness center aligns with the school’s holistic approach of bringing reason, faith, and wellness into the legal education of its students. For more information, visit



Everglades Wonder Gardens’ upcoming Flamingle Friday will feature a lecture by Jennifer Hecker on wildlife protection and water-quality efforts. The program, scheduled for 5-7 p.m. on March 6, will include a meet and greet, complete with a chocolate and champagne sampling, followed by the water and wildlife presentation. Hecker is the executive director of the Coastal & Heartland National Estuary Partnership, which works to restore and protect the water resources in Central and Southwest Florida. During Flamingle Friday, she will discuss natural resource policy issues and protective water quality standards that can help further protect the area’s resources and quality of life. The Flamingle Friday lecture is $20 for Everglades Wonder Gardens members and $25 for nonmembers. To register, call (239) 992-2591. The Flamingle Fridays event series features a rotating schedule of lecture topics at the Wonder Gardens. For more information, visit


Sofia Blanno


Fifth Avenue Family Office has named Sofia Blanno as an administrator of the Tamiami Angel Funds as it prepares to launch a fourth angel fund. Blanno recently graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers with an undergraduate degree in entrepreneurship with a minor in marketing. Blanno was inducted into the Honors College and National Honors Society and maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.8. A competitive tennis player throughout college, she was named a scholar-athlete and on the Florida Gulf Coast’s Dean’s list for six consecutive semesters. At FGCU, Blanno worked as an intern for the Emergent Technologies Institute and became president of the Business and Entrepreneurship Club. Blanno was also accepted into the FGCU Runway student accelerator program, where she successfully received funding for four consecutive semesters and launched her personalized apparel subscription package company, Best Dressed. She previously worked as a market research analyst for The Storm Smart Cos.’ Storm Smart.


Courtney Saksefski


LandQwest Commercial Chief Marketing Officer Courtney Saksefski, was recently named principal of the firm. Saksefski will spearhead media relations in all LandQwest markets, identify lead generation opportunities, implement revenue-generating strategies, and increase brand awareness to bolster business relations. Recognizing value in non-commissioned roles, senior management inducted Saksefski as the first employee to attain this status. Saksefski joined LandQwest in 2015 to craft innovative marketing and corporate branding campaigns, strengthen sales tools, and execute speed-to-market strategies. She has spent 15 years in the commercial real estate industry. Saksefski is a member of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA), the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), and the Greater Fort Myers and Greater Naples Chambers. Operating out of its headquarters in Fort Myers, she also has a routine presence in Orlando, Tampa, and Naples.



J. Sweet Construction has received the 2020 BUILD Home and Garden Award for Best Kitchen & Bathroom Remodeling Company – Southwest Florida for the second year in a row. The BUILD Home and Garden Award is presented annually by BUILD Magazine, a comprehensive global source of industry information covering all aspects of building, infrastructure and related works within the home building and construction industries. BUILD is distributed to over 110,000 dedicated and informed industry experts worldwide. For more information about J. Sweet Construction, visit



Kendall Carson has joined Spiro & Associates Marketing, Advertising, Public Relations and Brand Architecture as senior account executive. Carson brings with her more than17 years of experience in health care management. Most recently, she spent five years as an administrator at Avidity Home Health. Carson also has a background in event planning and management, as well as contract administration. A University of Florida graduate, Carson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in food and resource economics with a concentration on business management and marketing strategies.



Women of the (239) visit Pathways Early Education Center of Immokalee

Pathways Early Education Center of Immokalee welcomed the Women of the (239) to learn more about the positive impacts of early education for children living in poverty. Established in January 2016, Women of the (239) is a group of 150 Naples women dedicated to supporting their members in their individual wellbeing and the wellbeing of their community. As the Women of the (239) arrived, they were greeted by Pathways’ voluntary pre-kindergarten students as their tour guides. After visiting the classrooms, playground, and garden, the Women of the (239) sat down for tea and cookies with their tour guides. By empowering the students to give the tours and personally engaging them with diverse groups, the children gain valuable social skills that help them succeed throughout their scholastic career, a press release states. Pathways Early Education Center of Immokalee is a nationally accredited early education center, providing education and childcare services for more than 55 years. For more information, visit


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