December 20, 2014

Business Report

The New Pioneers
When Terri Rementeria returned to the United States after 20 years in Spain, she opened a restaurant in keeping with European culinary traditions. Her Camellia Street Grill features a menu of fresh vegetables from her garden, fish right off the boat, sautéed frog legs and Mediterranean collards. Yet the three-year-old venture isn’t anywhere in Naples, where foodies flock. It’s in Everglades City, a place known for its rural simplicity as well as its history of rough-edged pioneers, drug smugglers and other scofflaws.

Rementeria is one of a handful of entrepreneurs who are fostering a green sensibility and sophistication in this small town on the western edge of Everglades National Park. Find out how.

Tourism Scores
Along with the spring breakers boosting our local economy every spring, hundreds of amateur softball and baseball players head to Fort Myers for the annual Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic.

While the young vacationers populate our beaches, the college athletes head inland for the four-week tournament, staying at hotels and frequenting businesses closer to the playing fields.

From Terry Park Sports Complex to Germain Arena, local venues also draw adults’ and children’s teams who compete in football, soccer, swimming, BMX racing and roller hockey. It translates to millions of dollars flowing into Charlotte, Collier and Lee counties. See who’s winning big in the sports tourism game.

Bargain Hunters
With budget cuts, downsizing and a drop in consumer spending, businesses need to watch every penny. Startups are looking for low rents and good locations, and some existing businesses are looking for less expensive space than they currently occupy.

In Southwest Florida, what does it take to find affordable commercial space—especially at a desirable location? We talked to three business owners who recently completed a leasing quest here. The trio share their trials and successes in the March issue of Gulfshore Business.

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