Q & A Interview with RE/MAX Metro Real Estate Agent Karen Nasello
What made you get into paddle boarding?
A few years ago I was invited to participate in the Paddle Against Cancer event that benefits the Moffitt Cancer Center. A friend of mine who is a four time kidney cancer survivor, as well as a few other friends I saw, were starting to get into it. I saw it as an easy way to get on the water and something I could do all on my own with the ease of carrying the board and transporting it on my vehicle. I rented and borrowed paddle boards to get started and really loved it! Great exercise, and again, a super way to get out on the water and relax and explore. Anyone can do it!
Do you have any interesting stories about a property you have sold, something different or unique about that particular home?
I sold a lovely waterfront home earlier this year in the community of Vina Del Mar in St. Pete Beach. It was an original Rutenberg build home from 1972. The baths were mostly original and the kitchen cabinets were original dark green laminate and were all in pristine condition! The cool thing was the seller had the original sales brochure from 1972 promoting and advertising the Rutenberg built home. The language was hilarious as it talked about, “The housewife will love the spacious pantry and convenient kitchen.” Today that language would be considered discriminatory. It was funny to see the pics of families and the hairdo’s, etc. By the way, I sold that home in 7 days for slightly over asking price in a prime waterfront location!
What are some of the places you like to visit when you head out on the beach?
I love to walk the new, concrete beach trail in Treasure Island that goes for a little less that a mile in one direction. Anywhere on the sand at sunset hour! I enjoy the Katiki beach bar in Sunset Beach that has live music most days and many locals. Waltz Fish Shack in Madeira Beach on the Pass is legendary as they only serve their fresh catch of the day from local fisherman and their menu is on a chalkboard (a must!). Middle Grounds Grill in Treasure Island has super atmosphere, great food, a great wine list and a beautiful fish tank with tropical fish.
I almost forgot about the Agave Mexican restaurant in St. Pete Beach with the best fish and shrimp tacos; it’s very authentic and has a nice atmosphere. Also, a shout out to Willy’s Burgers & Booze in St. Pete Beach for the best burgers on the beach!
Anyone/anything in particular in the beach area that is a MUST VISIT/MUST SEE:
Walt’z Fish Shack as mentioned earlier, is a must but I also recommend the new Rumfish Grill in St. Pete Beach with its 30,000 gallon fish tank designed by the guys from the television series, “Tanked”. It’s amazing to see all the beautiful fish from the Gulf of Mexico. As a local, I finally did a touristy thing and went on the dolphin watch boat cruise. It was very cool and we saw many dolphin and many up close. I recommend it. Walk the beach in the early evening and into the sunset hour. That is the best time to be on the beach!
Would you like to give a shout out to the shop where you purchased your paddle board gear?
West Coast Kayak and Paddle Boards in St. Petersburg on Central Ave. near 66th St. They are great people. My board is by Waters Edge which is made in the US on the east coast of FL. Many are made in China. Let the experts give advice on what type of board to buy. There is a huge variety! Also, it is a coast guard requirement to have a PFD aboard your paddle board and you can get the kind that go around your waist and have one for your dog, too. My pics for this interview do not show those as this was a photo shoot but I always carry my PFD for safety.
Would you like to give a shout out to the rescue where you adopted Rebel?
Please support: www.aussieandme.org This is a great rescue group primarily helping to re-home Australian Shepherds and aussie mixes.
How long have you been a real estate agent?
I started in Chicago back in 2001 and then moved to Florida in 2006, where I continued working as an agent.
How long have you worked for RE/MAX Metro?
I started with them in 2009.
Are you a resident of the Treasure Island area, where your RE/MAX Metro office is located?
Yes, I absolutely love living here!
What are some of the things you love about Treasure Island? What makes it such a special place to live?
The Florida lifestyle is all about being outdoors and on the water; it’s the environment. Being near the beach is what it’s all about, especially in Treasure Island. You have great accessibility to the Gulf and the Intracoastal together; that’s a huge draw. Also, there is easy access from the southern beaches, such as Treasure Island, to St. Petersburg’s downtown district. There are many great activities in Treasure Island including paddle boarding, bicycling, water cycling, beach walking, windsurfing, fishing, kayaking and plenty of kid-based activities. There is also lots of great entertainment and live music at the various restaurants and bars in the area.
Are there any unique characteristics about the architecture in Treasure Island?
There is an eclectic variety of homes in Treasure Island, everything from ranch houses dating back to the 1960s to more modern day elevated beach cottages. Many residents are constantly updating and rehabbing older properties, as well. Along the beaches, especially here in Treasure Island, there is a finite supply of waterfront properties available. And living here in paradise, as luxurious as it can be, is actually very affordable. Also, having year round residents in Treasure Island is definitely something that sets this part of the beach apart from the rest; it’s not very seasonal.