Murray Homes Recognized For Bringing Fresh Styling To Lakewood Ranch

Murray Homes was featured in the real estate section of the for bringing a fresh, innovative style to home designs in Lakewood Ranch. During the interview Harold Bubil of the Sarasota Herald Tribune and recipient of the 2015 Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award, noted that while many homes in Lakewood Ranch are still the Tuscan-Mediterranean design, Murray Homes is “bucking the trend” by bringing Coastal Contemporary to east of 75.

The Resolute at The Lake Club Lakewood Ranch

Steve Murray stated the waterfront luxury home builder was approached by developers in Lakewood Ranch looking to offer a new experience for home buyers.

Staysail Court, a new enclave of custom homes inspired by the America’s Cup and featuring the innovative design blend of the clean lines of modern architecture with elegant British West Indies style as only Murray Homes can do, is the result.

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Those interested in see Staysail Court for themselves can drop by the model home located at 7926 Staysail Court Lakewood Ranch or visit

Murray Homes Announces New Homes Construction in The Lake Club Community at Lakewood Ranch

Murray Homes is now an official builder at the exclusive Lake Club community with their first model scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2015.

resolute front elevation

Murray Homes, Sarasota-based luxury homebuilder,announces its expansion into The Lake Club at Lakewood Ranch, becoming the eighth official builder in
the exclusive community.

The first British West Indies style model is expected to be completed in the spring of 2015. “We are excited to be selected as a home builder in The Lake Club and are committed to delivering exceptional homes in this prestigious community along with the exemplary customer service our clients have come to expect,” says Steve Murray, President of Murray Homes.

“We are confident the Lakewood Ranch community will benefit from our customer-centric approach and 20 years’ expertise in the luxury home building market.”

An extensive market study has been conducted to understand the style of homes people want. Based on the research findings along with the Murray team insights, an elegant timeless island-style collection has been created. The homes reflect a middle ground between traditional and contemporary. The British West Indies style architecture creates a casual yet elegant open island style home.

“Murray Homes is an ideal partner for The Lake Club, and strengthens our portfolio of existing builders,” says Jimmy Stewart, Vice President of Sales for LWR Communities. “Murray Homes offers a fresh variety of architectural styles and designs to suit every lifestyle and age group, and this new addition to our approved home builders’ team will reinforce our quality offerings at The Lake Club.”

Murray Homes is the exclusive builder in Staysail Court in The Lake Club. The family of homes designed for the enclave has been inspired by the America’s Cup and will reflect the British and European heritage of the Murray family as well as their passion for offshore racing.

The first model, scheduled to open in the spring of 2015, is named after the 106-ft. racing yacht Resolute. She was designed and launched in 1914 and sailed to victory for the U.S in 1920.

For models floor plans and more lake club homes for sale visit

Murray Homes Offers Inspired New Waterfront Home On Bird Key

Boasting the best of Florida living this visionary new home to be located at W Royal Flamingo Dr. on Bird Key has been designed to take full advantage of the Florida lifestyle, blurring line between outdoors and indoors.

340 West Royal Flamingo Dr, Bird Key Sarasota FL
Taking design ques from the Caribbean-style island homes, this amazing new home offers large open spaces that seamlessly transition to a beautifully landscaped outdoor living space with a lush tropical atmosphere.

Despite the large open rooms the well-designed floor plan residents will find an elegant yet highly efficient design that is great for day to day living as well as entertaining guests.

Murray Homes, Sarasota’s premier waterfront builder will outfit this magnificent new home with the finest materials available, and an uncompromising attention to detail.

The beautifully designed outdoor living space opens up to a bayside swimming pool and dock offering residents direct access to Sarasota bay, and the Gulf of Mexico via Big Pass or New Pass.

Those interested in more information about this spectacular new home should contact Murray Homes at 941-906-7000

Sarasota McMansions? Kevin Spacey, Surely You Jest!

Sarasota McMansions? I Think Not!Earlier this week the new political drama ‘House Of Cards‘ featuring actor Kevin Spacey debuted on netflix. In the show Kevin Spacey plays a rather unpleasant, power-hungry politician with an apparent unfavorable view of our lovely city.

In particular his character cited Sarasota’s luxury real estate market while illustrating his disdain for a former employee who left his service.

Money is the McMansion in Sarasota that falls apart after 10 years, Power is the old stone building that stands for centuries.

Well it’s obvious for us his character must NOT have spent much time checking out the array of industry leading hurricane-hardened, luxury homes that line our waterfront neighborhoods. Many of which have been designed by renown architects in both traditional and contemporary styles, have been built with beautiful natural materials, are LEED certified and will certainly withstand the test of time as they must comply with some of the strictest building codes in the country to deal with our frequent threat of hurricanes.

While hearing this kind of casual criticism certainly gets our feathers ruffled, we will admit at least during the ill-fated real estate bubble, there were a few fly-by-night builders with little experience interested in flipping a large well-located but poorly designed home for an even larger quick profit. However those were definitely the exception not the norm. High-end luxury home building in Sarasota is not for the feint of heart, and builders with little experience or resources do not last very long.

Sarasota Historical Remodel By Murray HomesThe many stunning estates that line our avenues and waterways have become a world-wide draw, and competition between top builders ensures impeccable quality and design standards. Murray Homes, we are proud to say, has been leading the pack. As the top builder on Bird Key in 2012 we have always had a passion for building homes that are not only luxurious, well designed and built with the best materials to the highest standards, but homes that will stand the test of time and continue to be an asset for both the homeowner and our community as a whole.

If fact for proof of our luxury home market’s longevity you need look no further than Ca’ d’Zan. John Ringling’s historical mansion. Built almost 90 years ago in1924, this masterpiece of the Venetian style architecture has graced our shorelines for decades.

Sarasota ModernIf the ornate old-world look is not your thing, Paul Rudolph, an icon of contemporary architecture, started the well known Sarasota Modern, or Sarasota School of Architecture movement that has not only lead to the design and construction of decades-old masterpieces, but has inspired a whole generation of contemporary architects to continue to innovate with beautiful and clean designs. In fact many homes in our area gain significantly in value not by being designed by a well-known architect but by simply being next to a home designed by one.

As a builder of of luxury homes in some of Sarasota’s most prominent areas we take the responsibility of creating homes that will add to our areas overall value now and far into the future.

Murray Homes Voted “Best of Houzz 2013”

Florida based Luxury Home Builder Murray Homes was voted as Best of Houzz 2013 by the community

Murray Homes specializes in building high-end luxury homes in and around Sarasota Florida’s premier waterfront locations.
Owner Steve Murray had this to say about the award, “Over the years Murray Homes has won some accolades from different local organizations, but being voted as ‘Best of’ by the design-savvy Houzz community is a real honor.” Murray added,”Our focus as a luxury market builder has always been around design, quality and creating enduring value that goes beyond the latest building fads. The members of Houzz are there to view beautiful designs and get ideas for projects so receiving notice from that group of discerning individuals is gratifying to all of us at Murray Homes and Murray Realty.”

New Buildings in a New Economy

Interior of Sarasota Waterfront Luxury Home Built By Murray Home Inc.As a builder of luxury waterfront houses – $1 million and up – I have pretty savvy clients. They’re not only interested maximizing their living pleasure, they also think of their home as an investment. Many of them come to me saying, “We want it for us, but we also want it to make commercial sense, so where is the market going to be in three year’s time?”
Whilst I don’t have all the answers, I do think that houses are becoming smaller; The 6,000 square foot home is now 4,500 square foot.

Many Realtors and builders have commented on this change in perspective, but what does this 20% reduction in living area actually mean? How does it affect livability? Does it really mean making do with less?

Modern Florida Kitcchen Design Built By Murray HomesIn certain ways, it means actual downsizing. The big homes used to have two dining rooms, a formal one which gets used only at Thanksgiving and Christmas, and a smaller table perched in the corner of the kitchen where people eat the rest of the year.
Instead, I recommend, and a number of my clients have agreed, to have one dining area only, but in the best location possible. That way, every time they eat breakfast, lunch or dinner, they have the best view and can enjoy it.

The same thing holds true for the living room areas. Why have a large living room – usually near the entry – filled with furniture that you only pass to and from the way to the bedroom? It takes up space, has to be air conditioned, and serves as little more than a showroom at a car dealership – no one drives those models; no one sits on that furniture. Why not get rid of it and add the space you’ve saved to your main living area where you and your guests really spend time?

That way, you reduce cost and size by making the house more livable on an everyday basis. As empty nesters, you can have the whole ground floor to yourselves and save the upstairs for guests.

Another great thing to do is to put more emphasis on exterior decks and outdoor kitchens. Here’s how.

On the waterfront, land is at a premium. Often with, say, a 100 by 150 foot property (15,000 square feet), you have a 30 foot setback in the front and at the rear. That pushes the house as far back from the water and the views.

 Bermuda Style Waterfront Home Built By Murray Homes IncThe current “must-have” is a 3-car garage. But do you really need it? If it’s your second or third home, perhaps two and half spaces, for 2 cars and a motorbike/golf cart/kayak, is plenty. Now you can pull the house back even farther and expand the deck.

The result is a bigger deck in back, which is what people in Florida really use and enjoy. Open up the sliders to your living room and it doubles your usable footage for 4 to 5 months out of the year. Chances are, for much of the humid summer, you’ll be gone anyway.

If you follow these simple ideas and principles, you’re going to make the house livable for you and your spouse 90% of the time, instead of building to suit the needs of occasional visits from kids, grandkids and friends.

Let’s face it, your guests will sleep where you put them. They’ll be flexible for a week or two. They’re just happy to be in the sun! But under no circumstances should you compromise your needs and living pleasure.

The reason we have had poorly designed homes in the past is that when the housing market was booming and investors ruled the land, they were buying raw property, developing it and putting up homes they then inflicted on the market. Buyers had no other option than to buy what there was. Needless to say, these investors weren’t always employing the best architects in order to save money.
Now that the market is coming back, it is an opportunity for individuals who are building custom homes for themselves to say what they really want.

That’s why I strongly encourage my clients to use top notch architects. They may be more expensive, but they’re also better. They’ll have the skills and vision to offer clients what they want with proper integrity of design. And that will benefit the resale value down the road.

Steve Murray of Murray Homes Inc.

Steve Murray

Clients may be spending the same amount of money on a smaller house than they would have on a larger house in the past, but they’re giving themselves what they want – a beautifully designed, livable space that will hold or even increase its value over time.

The Future of Luxury Home Design Courtesy of

People often ask me what the trends in exterior and interior home design might be three to five years from now. They are looking to maximize the salability of the home they’re building or renovating – a wise decision. I always encourage my clients to think about the resale value of their home even if they plan to live there for five to 10 years.

Architectural styles come and go  – who is to say exactly what will be the new Spanish Mediterranean? In the past, I used to assure them that if a house is well built according to sound design principles, it should stand the test of time and maintain its residual value.
That’s still accurate up to a point, but I can do better now!

While I don’t have a crystal ball, I do know that future tastes are being greatly influenced by a free new innovative website:

Murray Homes - Sarasota's Luxury Home Builder Profile On Houzz.comMost of my savvy clients know about it and they often arrive at initial design meetings armed with bookmarks and favorite folders gathered from the site.

Essentially, Houzz is a website comprising more than 700,000 photos covering all aspects of interior and exterior design.

You can browse by architectural style or by living areas. The latter includes not only typical areas such as living rooms, bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, home offices, patios and landscape, but also more specific parts of a house like entry ways, closets and staircases, home gyms and wine cellars.

You can also search by metropolitan areas – not just the major North American and European cities but also far-flung places like Australia, Rio De Janeiro, Hong Kong and Tel Aviv even the latest trends in Sarasota Luxury Homes are widely available .

Murray Homes Luxury Home Builder For Longboat Key Project Gallery On Houzz.comWhen you sign up to Houzz you can save your favorites to your folders. That’s how many of my clients and I start conversations about the kind of home they want to have built. Want to discuss faucets or fireplace tiles, tiki bars or crown molding?  There’s bound to be at least one or two photos you can earmark and share.

It beats going through lots of home and living magazines, cutting out pictures and bringing them in to the office in a cumbersome file.

You can also recommend favorite photos of your own – many of the homes I have built are represented on the site – and here’s where Houzz, directly and indirectly, affects the design styles of the future.

It turns out that great architectural photos tend to be those with simple lines, limited clutter and refined detail. Most of the exterior architecture is clean and fresh, with much less stonework, banding and ‘gingerbread’, The interiors are displaying elegant yet uncomplicated finishes in bathrooms and kitchens, more use of LED lights and European fixtures, recessed window treatments and stylish furniture. The photos represent a definite architectural trend….and as a result will begin to drive the new styles that people look to copy.

Steve Murray of Murray Homes Inc.

Steve Murray

Since this look mirrors my own personal tastes, I’m all for it and I peruse the site regularly to keep abreast of what people like and want to see in their own homes.

As more and more people discover Houzz, and like what they see – and what’s not to like? – this will continue to act as a barometer and give insights into the future of design and the pace at which it is evolving.  You want to know what the future holds?  Ask!

Images From The Murray Homes Houzz Galleries