Marco’s business briefs

Compiled by Quentin Roux

Five years’ consecutive excellence honored

The Marco Beach Ocean Resort has been named to the TripAdvisor Hall of Fame, awarded to only those businesses that have earned a certificate of excellence for five consecutive years.

Marco Beach Ocean Resort.

The certificate celebrates guests’ consistently high reviews of service and hospitality excellence on “Being inducted into the Hall of Fame is a true source of pride for the entire team at Marco Beach Ocean Resort,” said GM Joseph Fisher.

Networking gain

The Marco Island Center for the Arts and networking group Connectivity-Me have two upcoming attractions – a speed networking session Oct. 16 from 6-9 p.m., and a Halloween Bash Oct. 30 from 7-11 p.m.

Center for the Arts and Connectivity-Me representatives are combining for upcoming events.

Speed Networking is a variation of traditional business networking activity for meeting people. The Bash will include music, dancing and a costume contest with prizes awarded. Suggested donation for admission is $10.

Venue is 1010 Winterberry Drive. More information and Bash reservations are at 394-4221. For more information about each event, contact info@ or call 914-850-9684.

Blue Chip Awards speaker named

Dave Clark, former professional athlete and motivational speaker, has been selected as the Nov. 5 keynote speaker for the 21st Annual Southwest Florida Blue Chip Community Award luncheon. The annual program recognizes successful, small business owners who have overcome adversity to achieve success. Marco has had recipients over the past decade, including Arturo’s restaurant founders as well as Lisa and Denis Meurgue, now of Petit Soleil and Bistro Soleil.

Clark is a motivational speaker who has a powerful history of overcoming obstacles to reach his dreams. He suffered from polio as a child, but overcame health challenges this presented to become a successful professional baseball pitcher. He is the only professional league pitcher to have pitched using crutches.

For information on how to get an application for the Blue Chip Award or to attend the luncheon, call Stacey Mercado at 433-7189 or

Marco’s ‘Matilda’ connection

Realtor Donna Kittle reports that her granddaughter Mia, 9, in July made her debut at the Shubert Theatre on Broadway. Mia, known as Mi MI, signed a 9-month contract as the lead in the musical Matilda, based on a Roald Dahl play.

Mia Ryder, playing Matilda (left) is seen with "Miss Honey" at Mia's Broadway debut.

Kittle said she’s proud, because more than 1,000 girls tried out for the role, which selected just four “Matildas.”

New Fiddler’s Creek village unveiled

Fiddler’s Creek has introduced Lagomar II, a new village of 35 single-family homes by Lennar Homes. Assorted floor plans feature three and four bedroom homes, ranging from 2,244 to 3,025 air-conditioned square feet. Prices range between $440,000 and $650,000.

The Napoli Grande is a model featured in the new Lagomar II village in Fiddler's Creek near Marco.

Fiddlers Creek is a residential community off Collier Boulevard on the way to Marco Island. Golf is available, as well as an off-site beach and boating club. Call 732-9300.

Fishing contest this weekend benefits foundation

Big Brothers Big Sisters and Kretch’s restaurant are hosting a fishing contest this weekend in aid of the Trevor Smith Memorial Foundation. Islander Smith was killed in a stabbing incident late last year.

Oct. 16, 6 p.m. at Kretch’s is a banquet with dinner and a silent auction. Cost is $25. Fee for the fishing contest (which starts dawn at the Goodland Boat Ramp, and has a weigh-in at 3 p.m.) is $150 per angler. Sign-up as at, or by calling Jack at 595-2170.

Law website aims at guidance

Local attorney Patrick H. Neale recently announced his firm’s new web site, designed to provide reliable legal information to the community. The site features links to trusted resources that include government, Florida Bar, non-profit organizations, professional organizations and chambers of commerce, as well as a blog on timely topics. Neale said part of the motivation for the site is because of “a lot of misleading information on the Internet about legal issues.”

Thomas named top Realtor

Marco Island real estate agent Michelle Thomas, of Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, has again topped the REAL Trends list as one of the country’s top agents. The list ranks the most productive agents by state and by metropolitan area based on closed transaction sides and closed volume. Thomas was the number one individual agent in Marco Island for both number of sales and for sales volume.

Hilton resort grabs gold key award

Hilton Marco Island Beach Resort & Spa has once again won Meetings & Conventions’ 2015 Gold Key Award for professionalism and distinguished hospitality levels.

Criteria are staff attitude; quality of meeting rooms; quality of guest services; food and beverage service; proficiency of handling reservations; and, availability of technical/support equipment and range of recreational facilities.

Horror of horrors, but all good fun

Martha Horror rides again with her third season of fright nights with "Marco Murder and Mayhem; Historical Frightseeing Tours. The season kicks off October 23 (Friday Night) from 7 - 9 pm. Participants can jump start their evening at the Olde Marco Inn's Bistro Soleil with the doors opening at 6 p.m. for a complimentary drink. Bistro Soleil offers a special three course meal for Martha Horror's guest for $25. For reservations, call 389-0981. Other pre-season Murder and Mayhem dates include Nov. 20 and Dec. 4. Reservations: During season starting Jan. 8 and running through April 29 every Friday, Martha also caters to private groups of 20 or more with a discounted rate and complimentary tickets for the group leader.

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