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It’s Awards Season in Southwest Florida


Its award season in Hollywood and the Golden Globes just concluded their star-studded event last night on January 12. But in Lee and Collier Counties, another award season is on the horizon and flowing gowns, sparkling jewelry and shiny trophies are not the norm.


The Pinnacle and the Sand Dollar 

Lee County gives out the Pinnacle awards while Collier County gives out the Sand Dollar awards. Awards range from best community to best interior design, according to this article by the Fort Myers News Press.

“It is judged by out of town judges representing building and design and architecture, and marketing,” said Kathy Curatolo, executive vice president of the Collier County Building Industry Association (CBIA). “All of our judges come in from out of town so they are highly qualified and impartial.”

There are about 300 entries each year for the 60 categories of the Sand Dollar Awards, although builders and designers CAN enter into more than one category.

“A large builder can have many, many categories,” Curatolo said. “A designer can have many categories too. They can win in several categories.”

Valerie Whitaker, director of communications and events for the Lee County Building Industry Association (LBIA), said she receives about 130 entries for the 46 categories each year.

“It’s a really prestigious award for them (the community) to display,” Whitaker said. “It shows they are the best in that category.”

Like the Sand Dollar all judges are from out of town.

The Aurora

The third big award in southwest Florida is the Aurora. Unlike the Sand Dollar and the Pinnacle, this award consists of entries from 12 states in the southeast United States and the eastern Caribbean.

Florida Community Champions


The more unique awards such as the National Association of Home Builders Gold Award for #1 Community in the United States and the NAHB Gold Award Clubhouse are two distinct awards that every community longs for.

The Estero community, Miromar Lakes, is the only Florida community in the 32-year history of the NAHB awards to win these top national honors.

In fact, Miromar Lakes has won more than 130 local, regional and national accomplishments. “It’s wonderful to get the recognition that the vision worked,” said Margaret Antonier, president and CEO of Miromar Development.

Mediterra received eight Community of the Year Sand Dollar awards during the past 13 years and won a 2013 Aurora Award for Best Residential Development.

It also recently won the healthiest club award.

“We are thrilled to have had such great success winning a vast array of awards from local to regional to national awards. 2013 has been an amazing year. We are especially proud of Mediterra winning CBIA’s Sand Dollar Award Best Community for the eighth time,” said Nicola Weston, London Bay Homes marketing manager.

If you’re interested in any of these homes or other homes available in beautiful southwest Florida, contact our real estate agents today. We would love to help you find your next home sweet home in any of the award-winning communities around the area.

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