Jim Lewis

Meet Jim Lewis, Ocean’s Reach owner for 32 years

Can condo ownership bring peace and prosperity? It has for Ocean’s Reach owner Jim Lewis. Each year, he and his wife, Mary Lou, spend six months in the condo they’ve owned for 32 years.

Q. What’s your best helpful hint for newly arriving Ocean’s Reach guests?

A. Change from travel clothes into casual island dress. Get ready ASAP to enjoy the many exciting recreational and educational activities that Sanibel offers. Some of these include biking, swimming, shelling, kayaking, tennis and golf, just to name a few.

Q. What would you spend your first $10 vacation mad money on (Sanibel only)?

A. Rent a bike and get ready to explore Sanibel’s many miles of wonderful bike paths.

Q. What are your top 3 activities on Sanibel?

A. There are so many to choose from, but I would pick biking, relaxing in the sun, and enjoyable dining out in the evening.

Q. What’s best about the “new” Ocean’s Reach?

A. The beautiful landscaping and the wonderful newly refurbished gulf-front condominium units. Each condo has a direct view of the Gulf of Mexico.

Q. What would we be most surprised to know about you?

A. I was a farm boy who attended eight years in a one-room country schoolhouse with grades one through eight. In the eighth grade, I was the school janitor. I was paid the handsome sum of 50 cents per week, and was very glad to get it.

Q. With your resources, why did you select Ocean’s Reach/Sanibel as your annual vacation destination?

A. For nearly 50 years, Mary Lou and I watched real estate development on Sanibel. Ocean’s Reach is unique because of the proximity to the Gulf, its remote and serene location, and its wonderful, professional office management staff.

Q. What is the inspiration behind your new book?

A. Most of the manuscript was written two or more years ago. My training in economics permitted me to see the upcoming perfect economic storm on a global basis. This was evidenced by the spending and debt being incurred on a governmental and individual basis. The book is essentially a warning about impending global economic problems and what each of us as individuals can do to prepare a bulwark against such economic storms. The suggestions outlined in my book are ageless.

The book, Seeking Inner Peace and Financial Freedom: Stepping Stones in a Chaotic World, is available in bookstores or online from Barnes & Noble, Borders and Amazon.com, and from the publisher by calling (800) 288-4677.

Q. What’s the best advice you can give to our guests to help them weather tough economic times?

A. My suggestions are simple: Spend less than the amount earned, and purchase only what is needed, not what is wanted.

Q. Has there been a time when you didn’t follow your own advice?

A. No, frugality was deep-seated at an early age. I was reared that way.

We’ve always liked to travel; Mary Lou and I did that even when we didn’t have much money. In our 60 years of marriage, we have spent money to travel extensively in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

Q. How has being an owner at Ocean’s Reach affected you financially and personally?

A. Our investment in Ocean’s Reach proved to be the cornerstone of our savings program. The rental return and price appreciation over the years has been unparalleled. Ocean’s Reach is a rare piece of Sanibel real estate. It’s like finding a rare junonia shell on the beach, a “Gem by the Sea.”

We’ve watched Sanibel real estate for 50 years, and it has weathered many economic cycles over that time. Value has always been pushed forward by buyer demand and limited supply. It is my belief that the present represents a positive opportunity for acquiring a rare piece of island real estate. The long-term rewards are certain to be outstanding.

Note: Please consult your own financial advisor before making any investment decisions.