Episode II: Real Estate $.5 M buys bragging rights on Catawba Island

Realtor Alex Morgan Johnson is showing a four-thousand square foot, four bedroom, four and one-half bathroom home on Ohio’s north coast. Located at 1101 NW Catawba Road in Port Clinton this unshakable structure showcases the builder’s and contractors’ skills. The initial home plans were drawn out at only half of the size of the final product.

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Here is the home tour as seen in Episode II.

Josie in Paradise can be viewed every Sunday night at 9:30 p on AT&T U-Verse from Key West to Boca Raton, on Ohio’s X5 Roku Channel, and here.


EPISODE I: Real Estate The Banyan Cove Phase I $165,00 boutique condo near Put-in-Bay

There are realtors and then there’s the real deal. Some realtors just want to take your money. Some truly want others to find the perfect place to rest their head. These ladies and gentlemen will steer buyers away from shoddy construction, poor location, and a move which could potentially be a financial blunder.

These are the business leaders one must seek out.

Let me help you. Truth and Rob Lenthe are synonymous. He is the realtor with Truth First Realty and this guy is the real deal. He’s personable, has work ethic, knows the Lake Erie Islands, knows Ohio’s Vacationland, has tons of friends and even more connections, and wants to see business happen and make people feel good about the deals they enter. Myself, and the entire show crew,  like this guy.

Right now this gem of a guy, has a gem of a listing anyone can buy.

He jumped on board with us to showcase a one-bedroom, one-bathroom boutique condo nestled in the middle South Bass Island. This island off the coast of Ohio in Lake Erie that contains the summer hot spot of Put-in-Bay. The place was about the same size as my first cottage in Key West across the street from the iconic Marquesa Hotel.

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Banyan Cove Phase I is one-year old. This ground-level unit is being shown at a reduced price of $165,000. The interior flaunts Lake Erie high fashion elements and artwork indicative of the locale. The furnishings can be negotiated.

“The key selling point is location,” Lenthe supplies, “you’re within two blocks of downtown and less than one half of a mile to the airport and a golf cart ride to the ferry. This is central.”

Watch the interview with Lenthe inside the condo unit which aired on Episode I of Josie in Paradise.

You can view Josie in Paradise every Sunday at 9:30 on At&t UVerse from Key West to Boca Raton, on Ohio’s X5 Roku Channel and here.

Two ME&YC Condos Under Contract Views of Sandusky Bay and The Point

A couple of condos went under contract this week that I showed with Lake Erie’s Lab Pup in tow (for one). The third story Bayside unit at Marblehead Estates & Yacht Club for $299,900 and the one directly below on the second floor for $269,900. The developer, Prephan Enterprises gave away a 50′ dock and also a 12×40′, 480 square foot cold storage unit to both buyers, just as an incentive to push this season’s sales as high as the Top Thrill Dragster. Not only is ME&YC located just six short nautical miles across The Bay from The Point, but is nestled directly off of Scenic Route 2 on the much-desired Marblehead Peninsula. During season everyone waits two and a half hours for a table at dinner.

All counter tops are made of quartz, the kitchen appliance package is included and the master bedroom features a private deck, walk-in closet and walk-in stone shower. The floors are nicely constructed of ceramic tile. All new owners need is watercraft, swimwear, a summer squad to hit all of Ohio’s Vacationland hot spots with, plus twenty percent of the price for a down payment. The lowest priced unit is $249,000, which equates to a mere fifty grand to buy into a development on Ohio’s coastline. Use of the 300′ private beach, clubhouse and other amenities is free. The next Open House is Tuesday 10 a – 4p.

Bayfront, canal, pond and regular lots are also for sale. This is a bring your own builder situation. Starting price is $49,900 and reaches $249,900 for land on The Bay. Josie can be reached at 419-862-7143.


Second Home for Summer Marblehead Estates & Yacht Club

I’m out at Marblehead Estates & Yacht Club showcasing the boat slips, luxury condos and lots for sale. The lots are situated in four different places around the development.

  1. Traditional Lots $49,900
  2. Pond Lots $59,900
  3. Canal $99,900 – $119,900
  4. Bayfront $249,900


As you can see from the feature photo the kitchen countertops are made with a striking quartz. Here’s a look at the living space in the second floor condo, two-bedroom, two-bathroom condo overlooking the marina. The third bedroom has been left out to make for an open floor plan and open up extra space for dining.

The condos are designed for a weekend escape, or summer place in Ohio’s Vacationland! For the fashion I’m wearing today during this March snowstorm go here. A look at the prices again and information for connecting with me. Call my Ohio number, or if you have the 305 saved in your phone, feel free to use that.

My Founders Park Palace for Sale for $.5M for sale after renovations

All pictures by Travis Yednak and my personal iPhone

This home is where I first caught on that the universe gives one everything that they need. I left public life in 2012 and at the end of the year rode my bicycle around the island of Islamorada and happened upon this gem. A four-bedroom, four-bathroom home with another living room and kitchen in the downstairs enclosure, plus, a loft office. The house has been renovated since I lived here in 2013 before moving into the luxury City Loft in Cleveland. Here is a slideshow. The furnishings and furniture are atrocious and this is not what the space looked like when I occupied the rooms. But the open-floor concept and location, in a sweet little neighborhood halfway between Miami and Key West, is a seller.

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Don’t you love the aquarium feature in the staircase? This place is where I met the Olympic-medal draped swim coach, Jon Olsen, at Founders Park.

The same park where I revisited my love affair with the tennis courts.

.. and swimming in the open ocean.

Unexpected, lifelong friendships were formed.

and many, many Morada Bay Full Moon parties were attended.

I designed a dress or two…

…and immersed myself into the study of theology and Catholicism.

The master bedroom was actually my yoga and fitness studio where my massage therapist would also set up.

How can you not want to live here? Get yourself a convertible and start Living the Dream! The place is for sale and needs a stylish touch to match the vibe of this posh island paradise.

Why would I ever leave…? This is also the home where I learned some believe that its ok for others to do ok, just not better than them. Success is for everyone. As I’ve just shown you there is an abundance in the universe. Go get some.

Top 10 Lake Erie Cottages where to stay when the calendar reads vacation

Memorial weekend is upon us. That means time to make a break for Lake Erie Vacation Land, soak up some sun, and all of the nostalgia that defines Ohio’s coastline.

“Just imagine if you could still have a cocktail in the park. Put-In-Bay is still a hot spot even though that part is now restricted. You’re safe. You don’t have to worry about anyone hurting you out on the islands,” Theresa Jeremy associate at the Waterline Store for Miller Boat Line supplies the synopsis of what’s to come for Summer 2016.

For many, the time has come in life where crashing out at 3 am on a boat docked across the park from the Frosty Bar isn’t an option.

Prior booking, reservation and a room key is a must before boarding the Jet Express, Miller Ferry, or the Kelley’s Island Boat Line.

A tour through Port Clinton, Catawba Island, Marblehead, Lakeside, Kelley’s Island, South Bass Island (PIB), Middle Bass Island, North Bass Island, Pelee and Rattlesnake Island reveals: making reservations is rough.

North Bass is mostly owned by the State of Ohio. Paramount Distillers still cultivates vineyards on the island. There are less than two dozen islanders who live here year-round. There aren’t any public facilities on the island – not even a general store. Gibraltar Island doesn’t have overnight accommodations but you can take a water taxi from Put-In-Bay for a day trip to see the Cook Castle. Right now that property has a $4 M price tag attached to the restoration.

No wonder crashing on a watercraft is how most locals initially experience these idyllic islands. In 2016 Put-In-Bay still remains number one for fun. Not just on Lake Erie but the entire Great Lakes system.

10.) Coastal Floating Homes

Be ON the water with a boat dock outside of the door. Coastal Floating Homes are located at 545 West Lakeshore Drive in Port Clinton. A minimum two-night stay is required. Sleeps six guests. There’s a heated pool and guests are within walking distance to downtown Port Clinton and the Jet Express.

 9.) Catawba Island Chalet

Lemon-colored walls and a sleeping loft with twin beds covered in fish-patterned bedspreads plus a highchair have earned this chalet on Catawba Point the theme of “Family-friendly.” Children are welcome at this completely refurbished Chalet-style home located on Catawba Point. This is a one-bedroom home that has a sleeping loft and pull-out couch to accommodate even more guests. Nicely equipped with cable, internet and linens and priced right around $200.

8.) Island View Cottages at PIB 

Jump off of the Miller Boat Line Ferry, start walking towards the boardwalk and right past the golf cart rentals find Island View Cottages. Each sleeps six and the canoe decor will have guests swooning before they even reach the winery. The grounds are secluded and there isn’t anywhere on the website discouraging bachelor and bachelorette parties. Bring marshmallows. There is a fire pit. Call 419-285-RENT for prices.


7.) Middle Bass Historic Home 

Touted as having “The best sunsets north of Key West” this five-bedroom B&B is available to rent in its entirety. Whether celebrating a wedding or hosting a family reunion the views are so extravagant even politicians would brag about the features. One can take in two countries and five islands from the 110′ porch. The Middle Bass Ferry makes round trips to Put-In-Bay. Play horseshoes or wander on over to the Lonz Winery to sip on a glass of White Catawba all for less than $500 a night.

6.) Marblehead Sunset Villa

Relax in 2,500 square feet of style. Professionally decorated guests age five to seventy will enjoy the luxurious four-bedroom with an added upstairs family-room. This villa is located near Sandy Beach overlooking Cedar Point. Nicely furnished with marble and granite throughout and priced under $600 per night.

 5.) The Castle at Lakeside

Why stay in a cottage when booking a castle is a possibility! Located in the gated community of Lakeside near the tennis courts guests can play shuffleboard, relax in an armchair upholstered in bird fabric and head off into the water on a canoe to explore. This 2,200 square foot romancer seats ten people around the dining room table and has its own library. $245 per night.

 4.) The Old Nest at Kelleys Island 

The Adirondack chairs are inviting guests now to come, sit back with a glass of Kelleys Island Sunset Pink and enjoy the views of Lake Erie from this historic cottage. For $400 per night The Old Nest is on a private, nine-acre estate that has been in the family for over 100 years. Enjoy exclusive waterfront access. Inside find a rustic nautical theme throughout this five-bedroom escape.

3.) Moonrest Cottage, Pelee Island

Cute, cute, cute and more Canadian cuteness! Pelee Island is part of the Lake Erie Island system and the lowest appellation of Canada. Explorers can relax knowing there is this three-bedroom on the island’s east shore priced at $220 per night. The front door is steps away from Sandy Beach. Right now there is only one week in June and one week in July to claim this cottage on an island only inhabited by 150 people. Visit the Pelee Winery, go sailing, take in the shipwrecks in the surrounding waters; or….the intriguing exhibit on Al Capone and his Rum Runners who used Pelee Island as a point of embarkation to Ohio during the years of Prohibition. Moonrest sleeps six.

2.) Rattlesnake Island Club

Ohio’s largest country club on a private island. What happens at Rattlesnake Island stays at Rattlesnake Island. Island is owned by 65 businessmen. Want to mix business with pleasure? Do your research. Inquire about becoming a member here. Accessible via helicopter.

1.) Put-In-Bay Party Palace

Why sleep on a boat when for $1635.00 you can crash here. Check out these views from the eat-in kitchen. This 5,000 square-foot Lake House nestled ever-so-nicely on South Bass Island (Put-In-Bay) is going to entitle whomever has the key as King of the Great Lakes. Has several balconies and IS available this weekend. Grab your Jet Express pass and at least 13 of your best friends. Catering is available at this 5,200 square-foot PIB Estate.


Josie is an award-winning journalist and former TV anchorwoman. She grew up on Coastal Ohio and knows many of the nooks and crannies which make the region so spectacular.
Josie is an award-winning journalist and former TV anchorwoman. She grew up on Coastal Ohio and knows many of the nooks and crannies which make the region so spectacular.

Home Inventory Drops in the Middle Keys ReMax Keys to the Key realtor Bill Wilkinson has the numbers

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Buyers are bringing their Boats American Caribbean's Stephanie Clark on the Islamorada Market

Contractors in the Upper Keys are experiencing a flurry of activity. Buyers are entering the Upper Keys real estate market, often with cash in their hands, to buy and remodel entire homes and the accompanying property. As soon as the dust from Pierre’s New Year’s Eve fireworks spectacular settled down over the ocean, buying activity turned on like a light switch.

Here’s more with fifteen-year veteran realtor Stephanie Clark.