Tampa, Florida 33606
Developed by a Playboy in the 1920s, Davis Islands is an Archipelago Just South of Tampa and Has the Feel of a Walkable Village
In the 1920s, Dave Davis, Florida's "Great Gatsby," a playboy and the son of a steamboat captain, dredged two islands near the mouth of the Hillsborough River and named it Davis Islands. Just two miles south of downtown Tampa, it is technically an archipelago and home to nearly 6,000 people.
Davis spent $350,000 developing his islands and planned to build a resort with a golf course, an airport and three hotels. He also sold 300 lots to private individuals. The resort ran into financial trouble when the Florida land boom started to die down and lenders began seizing hotels and homes. And then in 1926, Davis was lost at sea while traveling to Paris with his mistress.
Today, Davis Islands is peppered with beautiful Mediterranean-style architecture from the early days. East Davis Boulevard is the commercial area and has upscale eateries, coffeshops, boutiques and more. The neighborhood has no stop lights and one bridge connecting it to the mainland.
Empty nesters, boomers and retirees like Davis Islands because it has lovely homes, safe streets and the feel of a walkable village. About 40% of residents are age 45 or better. Many locals ride around in golf carts.
The neighborhood has two marinas, a yacht club, walking trails, swimming pools, tennis courts and a small airport. Streets are named after islands or bodies of water. Examples include Biscayne Avenue and Barbados Avenue.
Aside from the 1920s and 1930s Mediterranean architecture, home styles include ranch rambler, bungalow, Spanish Colonial, traditional and more. Many residences sit next to the water. The neighborhood has some rather nondescript condos and town homes, too. Prices start in the low-$300,000s.
Davis Islands attracts tourists who come to soak up the balmy atmosphere and see some interesting structures, including the Palace of Florence, a three story version of Florence's Palazzo Vecchio, and the Captain Jack De Lysla home, which has a square tower. Baseball player Derek Jeter also has a home here, a 30,875 square foot dwelling that some people compare to an aircraft carrier.
The neighborhood has some racial diversity, and politics lean to the right.
This area has a humid subtropical climate. Summer temperatures are in the 80s and 90s, and winter temperatures are in the 60s and 70s. On average, the area receives 50 inches of rain per year.
Visit tinyurl.com/y4tnfknn to see Davis Islands listings.
Population is 385,000
Median age is 37
Percentage of population with at least a bachelor's degree or higher is 32%
Estimated median household income is $59,905
Median home value is $225,040
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