I don't recall exactly how we first came up with the idea for this issue's cover story, "It's Only Money," by Nanci Theoret (page 76). But it emerged during one of those high-level brainstorming sessions in which we sit around the office tossing ideas back and forth until something sticks. The conversation probably went something like:
"April is our annual Wealth Issue. We've got a story about the 20 most expensive residential real estate deals in Lee and Collier counties. We've got a story about the 'Money as Art' exhibit at the Naples Museum of Art. And we've got a photo essay about the latest in top-drawer jewelry. But we need one more story on that wealth theme. Anyone got any ideas?"
"What can you say about wealth? Either you've got it, or you don't."
"But what if you had an unlimited amount of money.?"
"Yeah, like 'What would you do if.?"
". if you wanted to have a big night out on the town."
" . if you wanted to have the ultimate night out on the town."
"You could rent a limo and start with cocktails at one place, then go for appetizers someplace else, then the main course at another place and . "
"Or what if you wanted to take the ultimate day trip. You could charter a jet just for the day and bop over to the Bahamas just for fun."
"Do people actually do that?"
"Sure, all the time. It's only money."
"How much do you think that would cost?"
"If you have to ask, then . "
"Hey, what if you wanted to play the ultimate game of golf?"
"Yeah, like what if you wanted to play golf with Greg Norman?"
"Or what if you wanted to fill your garage with the hottest cars and motorcycles on the market?"
And it just progressed from there. Before we knew it, we had created six ultimate scenarios-real pie-in-the-sky dreaming about everything from boats and romance to ultra-cool playthings. Then we enlisted Theoret, Gulfshore Life's real estate editor and general, all-around go-to writer, to make everything come true. Or at least go shopping and put a price tag on everything.
"I think the most amazing thing was learning how many people from the Gulfshore think nothing of hopping on jets for a day trip to South Beach or the Bahamas. Or building their own customized yachts," says Theoret, who also co-penned our "Top of the Market" feature about the most expensive real estate transactions. "The whole time I was working on it, I spent a lot of the time just fantasizing and dreaming."
Here's hoping all those dreams can come true. Enjoy the issue.