Lifestyle - January 2, 2019

Lake Nona’s energy is real, and you can feel it

Andrew P. OdenbachTransforming a nascent Central Florida community into a most successful living experience across the globe: Andrew P. Odenbach was an active participant in the process that made Lake Nona a place of desire for many families. “Tavistock has been incredibly thoughtful in designing Lake Nona, creating the high-energy community where people want to be,” says Odenbach, who is Vice President of Sports Ventures for Tavistock Development Corporation.

The secret that draws so many people to Lake Nona is the variety of options and the balance that this diversity provides. Pre-K to PhD education. Infrastructure to practice many sports. Top notch health services at hand. A set of innovations and technologies to make everyday life easier. Rich and quality fun for everyone.

Mr. Odenbach is proof that none of this is missing in Lake Nona. “Sports and education unite people together and there is no shortage of opportunity in Lake Nona.”

As Vice President of Sports Ventures for Tavistock Development Corporation, one of Mr. Odenbach’s achievements is to put Lake Nona in the limelight when it comes to tennis. The new campus of the United States Tennis Association (USTA) is in the community and is a national hit. “The USTA was hoping to have 55,000 visitors last year and they ended up with more than 195,000 visitors.”

The next step is to drag the attention of the college sports world to Lake Nona. With the NCAAs’ Men and Women National Championships to Lake Nona in 2019 and 2021, we are sure that Mr. Odenbach’s work will produce a very positive result.

Exclusive interview

When did you come to Lake Nona?  What was here?

I came to work for Tavistock at Lake Nona in 2005.  At the time, there was the airport, NorthLake Park, Lake Nona Golf & Country Club and a Publix. We had a vision for what Lake Nona could become, and it’s incredible to see the transformative effect of what has been created and what’s to come.

If we compare Lake Nona to other regions in Orlando, there’s a much higher rate of value appreciation here. In your opinion, why do you think that is?

I believe that Tavistock has been so incredibly thoughtful in the design of Lake Nona as it relates to architecture, landscaping, recreational opportunities, restaurants, events, experiences and creating a high-energy community where people want to be. Providing what people want creates value and desirability. The more demand, the higher the price – and we are just getting started.

Why is does Tavistock care so much about Sports and Education? 

Sports and Education unite people together and there is no shortage of opportunity in Lake Nona. From tennis, golf, soccer, flag football, volleyball, baseball, softball, biking, running, swimming, to wake boarding and waterskiing, there is literally something for everyone in Lake Nona. Everyone wants exceptional educational opportunities for themselves and their children.  There are more than 14,000+ students in Lake Nona – attending everything pre-K to PhD, Lake Nona offers top-rated public schools and three onsite universities and colleges.

Is the USTA project a winner?

The USTA was hoping to have 55,000 visitors last year in its first year of operations. They ended up with more than 195,000 visitors. They are now looking to expand their site to accommodate additional indoor courts. Also, the NCAA is bringing the men’s’ and women’s National Championships to Lake Nona in 2019 and 2021.

USTA Campus

We know that you were personally involved in bringing modern architecture to Lake Nona, can we expect more of that design in the future?

A few years ago, there was very little modern or contemporary design in Lake Nona Golf & Country Club. We felt the product needed to be diversified to include these options, but it had to be architecturally correct for it to look good. The newly designed homes were so well received by our buyers at the country club that Laureate Park added these styles of homes as well.

In terms of technology, why did Tavistock start Dais Technologies?

Our goal when we were starting Laureate Park was to become Florida’s first gigabit community by delivering speeds at the time of 1GB to every home. We tried to partner with existing providers, but they didn’t want to be obligated to deliver those speeds to every community they serve. Tavistock was committed to the connectivity speeds, so we did it ourselves.

What are the next few things we can look forward to at the Lake Nona Town Center?

In 2019, Boxi Park at Lake Nona will be open along with the adjacent beach volleyball courts and construction will be underway on an incredible fitness and performance center, the town center hotel and the Cinépolis Lake Nona movie theater.

How about the Crystal Lagoon, when will that be ready?

We have already started clearing and grading the land for the Resort Hotel, Spa, Lagoon and Lake Nona Golf & Country Club expansion. We will begin the lagoon work in early 2019, but because of the size and complexity, the facilities won’t open until 2021. The residential will be so well done we firmly believe plenty of buyers will choose Lake Nona over Miami.

How does Lake Nona maintain its global reputation as one of the best Golf & Country Club’s in the world?

Ownership is committed to building and maintaining the finest collection of amenities anywhere, and it shows. We’re proud to showcase the clubhouse, golf, tennis, fitness, lagoon, lake, pools, youth center and extensive events. The staff works relentlessly as a team to serve the members every day. We have a young, family-oriented membership that enjoys spending time with one another. That energy is real, and you can feel it.

Lake Nona Golf & Country Club