The Villages, Retirement Florida Style

Spanning Sumter, Lake and Marion counties, The Villages is a master planned retirement community where, according to the propaganda, “peoples dreams come true”.

Dreaming of the good life

Dreaming of the good life

This age restricted community was rated in 2012 by Forbes magazine as the fastest growing small town in America.

Bath houses by the lake

Bath houses by the lake

This large mostly self contained community with 3 different town squares is made up of Brownwood, Spanish Springs and Sumter Landing, each with a different theme. Every evening, weather permitting, there is live entertainment at each town square. You can listen to the music and dance under the stars.

Church in Spanish Springs

Church in Spanish Springs

Spanish Springs fountain

Spanish Springs fountain

Rec centers are scattered throughout offering activities from bridge to yoga and zumba. There are 29 free (to residents) golf courses and 10 professional golf courses. Theaters show all the current movies, restaurants and cafes serve meals to suit every taste.

Fancier than Gator Joe's, but I bet the food isn't as good

Fancier than Gator Joe’s, but I bet the food isn’t as good

If you feel like Italian tonight

If you feel like Italian tonight

Dinner and a movie

Dinner and a movie

If your budget is small you can purchase a used park model trailer for about 80 thousand dollars, but there are homes to suit any budget up to a million dollars. Ongoing upkeep starts at one thousand dollars a month -and lasts forever.

Spanish Springs sales office

Lake Sumter Landing sales office

Lake Sumter Landing sales office

Visited a sales office posing as prospective buyers; walked the walk, talked the talk, asked all the right questions. It was pretty impressive, very upscale, catering to every retirement fantasy, but not our style.  It’s a little  fancy; we’re too down to earth for this place.

But they do have their own pawn shop

But they do have their own pawn shop

It would mean I’d have to “dress for dinner” and Mike doesn’t own anything fancier than a new pair jeans.

The wharf by the lake

The wharf by the lake

A stream runs through the village

A stream runs through the village

The most unique feature of The Villages is the impressive array of designer golf carts. I’ll devote a whole post to these golf carts next time.

If you think The Villages might be the place for you, below is the link to their web site.

http://www.thevillages.com/

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