If you are searching for a new home or want a taste of the great Gulf coast life, there are plenty of distinctive Lakewood Ranch Homes for sale where you can join a warm, welcoming, and diverse community.
Below is a comprehensive overview of Lakewood Ranch life, what it offers, and why you should consider shopping for your dream home in this planned community.
Brief History of Lakewood Ranch, Florida
The refined living on Lakewood Ranch didn't just happen. The community arose as part of the vision for Schroeder-Manatee Ranch in the early 1900s. Over the years, this working ranch transitioned into a master-planned community, where homes are carefully located for amenities, jobs, and services.
Lakewood Ranch is distinct in that it has been under the stewardship of one family, the Uihlein family, for over a century. Through multiple generations of thoughtful planning, Lakewood Ranch has grown into a thriving community where residents are confident that infrastructure, stewardship, and land maintenance are thoroughly considered.
Living in Lakewood Ranch, Florida
Lakewood Ranch spans from State Road 64 up north, Interstate 75 to the west, and Fruitville Road to the south, covering 47 square miles (33,000 acres). The nearest airports serving the area are the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) and Tampa International Airport (TPA), which are about 20 minutes and one hour away, respectively.
Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) and St Pete-Clearwater International (PIE) are slightly further away. Traveling around Lakewood Ranch is fast and comfortable.
Lakewood Ranch homes for sale offer some of the best homeownership choices on Florida's coast. The community comprises over 20 villages with distinct home styles and amenity options. The villages range from 250 to 1500 homes, most actively selling beautiful new homes.
Lakewood Ranch features well-designed and appropriately priced residential units and lifestyle amenities that appeal to other income, age, and household segments. There is something in store for singles, families, retirees, and seniors. The prices of new homes range from $200,000 on the lower end to $3 million for luxury waterfront homes.
The broad array of Lakewood Ranch homes for sale includes apartments, condos, and neighborhoods with detached and attached family homes, with more under construction. Most households are owner-occupied, with the average homeowner being middle-aged. There are even villages that sell exclusively to homeowners ages 55 and above.
One of the great things about Lakewood Ranch is that it's not just a place to reside but a way of life. Where else can you reside near culture, entertainment, arts, and world-class beaches? From the white sands of Siesta Key to museums and performance arts of Sarasota to shopping at St. Armand's Circle, you'll be able to make the most out of life on Florida's "cultural coast."
Among the best features in the neighborhoods are professionally designed golf courses, miles of trails along nature reserves, active premier sports complexes, top-notch fitness centers, and community centers offering group activities.
Coupled with fantastic year-round warm weather, a desirable atmosphere, and great job markets, it's no wonder the community has grown so quickly over the past two decades.
The Lakewood Ranch Community
Lakewood Ranch is home to about 35,000 friendly residents. The community is vibrant, with a sense of pride, a progressive spirit, and a relaxed attitude. Everyone is welcome, and there's always room for one more. When you get here, you know you already belong here.
Being a primary home community, most of the residents reside here year-round. While some residents have vacation homes, the area doesn't clear out during summer like other areas in Florida. For this and other reasons, the area has been the best-selling community in Florida for all types of homeowners.
You will experience a true sense of community and vibrancy throughout the year. The residents actively participate in community events, take full advantage of the area's amenities, and are a significant part of what makes a living in Lakewood Ranch great.
School Systems in Lakewood Ranch, Florida
Education is a cornerstone of the Lakewood Ranch community, and the CDP has one of the best school systems in Florida, catering to all educational levels. There is an excellent selection of highly-rated public and private schools.
The School Districts of Manatee County and Sarasota County serve the area. Lakewood Ranch also has several higher-learning institutions and vocational schools. Below is an overview of the educational institutions in Lakewood Ranch:
B.D. Gullet Elementary School – one of the best public elementary schools in Manatee County, serving more than 1,000 students in grades PK-5.
Braden River Elementary School – is an above-average school that serves about 500 students in grades PK-5.
Gene Witt Elementary – a highly rated public school with nearly 700 students in grades PK-5.
Gilbert W. McNeal Elementary School – situated on Lorraine Road, this high-performing school has about 800 students in grades PK-5.
Carlos Haile Middle School – an above-average middle school with about 700 students in grades 6-8.
Dr. Mona Jain Middle School – a diverse middle school in Bradenton, serving over 800 students in grades 6-8.
Lakewood Ranch High School – the top high school in the Manatee County school district. This award-winning high school has an enrollment of about 2500 students in grades 9-12.
- Braden River High School – a highly rated high school with 1800 students in grades 9-12.
Other notable public schools in Lakewood Ranch include Robert Willis Elementary School, Dan Nolan Middle School, Freedom Elementary School, Imagine School Lakewood Ranch, and Lakewood Ranch Preparatory Academy.
IMG Academy – is one of the most highly-rated private schools in Bradenton. IMG Academy ranks well in academics, teacher quality, college preparation, sports, club activities, and diversity.
Pinnacle Academy – serves about 100 students in grades PK-12, having one of the highest student-teacher ratios in Florida.
The Out-of-Door Academy – is a top-rated private college preparatory school that serves students from prekindergarten through grade 12. The Academy has two campuses, the Upper School Uihlein Campus and the Siesta Key Campus.
Beyond the spectrum (Pre-K through k-12).
- New Gate Montessori (Grades 7-12).
- Keiser University
- State College of Florida
- Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
- Manatee Technical College
- Meridian Career Institute
Activities, Attractions, and Amenities in Lakewood Ranch, Florida
We have highlighted some activities you and your loved ones can explore.
The Lakewood Ranch Community Development District manages and protects the area's natural resources, offering you access to pristine parks, community open spaces, and scenic trails. If your family loves the outdoors, the CDP has thousands of acres allocated to lakes, nature preserves, and parks that offer numerous ways to explore the grounds.
Greenbrook Adventure Park is the most popular among the 12 community parks in Lakewood Ranch. It features large soccer fields, an inline skating court, shaded playgrounds, and a paw park. You can wind around boardwalks and paths, explore the 150 miles of multi-surface trails or take your pet for a splash at the dog park.
On top of being an excellent place for outdoor family fun, many spaces are home to precious wildlife. You can spot river otters, deer, Florida sandhill cranes, gopher tortoises, and more on a casual stroll. The entire family can engage in other activities in Lakewood Ranch parks, including disc golf, fishing, picnicking, biking, and kayaking/boating.
Sports, Games & Fitness
Sports and friendly competition are a major part of life in Lakewood Ranch, with many amenities and clubs dedicated to different games. Lakewood Ranch has nine golf courses, including private, semi-private, and public. Lakewood Ranch Golf & Country Club is the main golf club in the community. If you love golf, you'll love it here.
It is also not uncommon to encounter neighbors and friends cheering on youth soccer teams at the Premier Sports Campus or tailgating at one of the seven world-class polo fields. Adults and kids can participate in other popular sports and games, including basketball, volleyball, tennis, cricket, pickleball, and casual cornhole. Lakewood Ranch has various sports clubs where you can learn and enjoy these games.
The fitness and well-being of residents are highly treasured in Lakewood Park, with many amenities catering to the same. From jogging groups and cardio sessions to yoga and workout sessions, there's always something to help you and your family stay in shape. You can always find your Zen, break a sweat, or discover a new hobby.
Awaiting just a short drive from Lakewood Ranch are the white beaches and blue waters of the Gulf Coast. Some of the best beaches are situated on Sarasota's coastline and attract visitors from near and far for relaxing times.
The waterways are great for boating, swimming, paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, beach sports, parasailing, watching sunsets, and more. The best beaches in the area include Siesta Key, Anna Maria Island Beach, Lido Key, Longboat Key, and Turtle Beach.
Ranch Nite Wednesdays
Every Wednesday between 6 and 9 pm, Lakewood Park residents gather at Waterside Place town center to enjoy food, drinks, live music, a friendly game of cornhole, and good times. Here local food trucks, dessert vendors, and mobile bars offer a wide variety of treats and drinks as local musicians grace the area with entertaining performances.
The most talented makers, artists, and bakers also display their goods on the night market as part of a long-standing weeknight tradition.
The Farmer's Market
The Farmer's Market showcases the area's best produce and flavors, featuring over 100 curated vendors. A weekly tradition has developed where residents from all over Lakewood Ranch flock to the market to purchase fresh produce, delicious meals, and specialty items.
Aside from the shopping, you can attend a free yoga class at Waterside Park next to the market or bring your kids for creativity activities at occasionally-hosted art workshops. The Farmer's Market also attracts local musicians and bands that spice up every trip.
Main Street is a town center in Lakewood Ranch that boasts world-class boutiques, miniature golf courses, acclaimed restaurants and eateries, a cinema, and regular festivals and concerts. It is a hub of exciting family-friendly activities with retail therapy and a great meal on just about any corner.
The town center is excellent for shopping, strolling, and special events throughout the year. The entire Lakewood Ranch community comes out for the popular Music on the Main event, a free concert series with food vendors, sponsor booths, games, and kid's activities.
St. Armand's Circle
St. Armand's Circle is referred to as the "Jewel of Sarasota" for good reasons. What's not to love about this top-rated attraction?
During the day, it is an outdoor shopper's dream, a place for unique delicacies; somewhere you can relax at a luxurious spa or spend a day on the nearby Lido Beach. In the evening, it's a gathering place for outdoor performances and a magical bustle.
Lakewood Ranch Arts, Culture, and Cuisine
Lakewood Ranch has lots of offerings concerning arts and culture. You can check out exciting exhibits, enjoy a live show at one of the theatres, or learn about the area's history at a local museum. The local arts organizations hold regular events highlighting artists, film, music, and performing arts.
The culture and arts scene at Lakewood Ranch is entertaining and inspiring. You can visit the Anna Maria Island Historical Society Museum, the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, the Florida Maritime Museum, and The Bishop Museum of Science and Nature.
For memorable performances, you can always grace Florida Studio Theatre, Asolo Theatre, Manatee Performing Arts Center, The Players Centre for Performing Arts, and Sarasota Opera. For art lovers, Lakewood Ranch covers you with the Art Center Manatee, Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota, Ringling International Arts Festival, Sarasota Film Festival, and Village of the Arts.
If you want to indulge your taste buds, Lakewood Ranch has a unique culinary scene encompassing casual and upscale dining and quaint cafes. These eateries are spread across the main activity hubs and neighborhood plazas, meaning a great meal is always nearby. One of the top restaurants in Lakewood Ranch is Lucky Pelican Bistro, a gourmet seafood restaurant with unique culinary options for both carnivore and vegetarian tastes.
The Best Neighborhoods in Lakewood Ranch, Florida
If you're considering moving to Lakewood Ranch, here are the top neighborhoods.
Esplanade is among the most highly rated villages in Lakewood Ranch. This gorgeous neighborhood was developed by Taylor Morrison and had 1250 homes. Esplanade has a great mix of single-family homes and condos.
One top draw is a massive resort-style swimming pool with cabana rentals. Next to the pool is the outdoor casual Bahamas Bar offering a Caribbean-style menu. There are four other pools and a spa within the neighborhood.
Golf is a popular sport in Esplanade, with a championship 18-hole course with practice areas. Esplanade also has several tennis and pickleball courts. The residents actively form clubs and organize community events to make the most of the available Lakewood Ranch amenities.
Indigo is a built-out mid-size neighborhood with around 680 homes. This community's Lakewood Ranch Homes for Sale has various floor plans, including large homes and attached villas. Indigo is a scenic neighborhood with several conservation areas featuring many green spaces, palms, massive oak trees, and native Florida flora.
Indigo has an activities director who oversees amenities and manages year-round events. The residents here are active community members, being part of various book and sports clubs. Indigo is also a multi-generational neighborhood with much diversity and cohesion. The amenities you enjoy in Indigo include pickleball courts, a large swimming pool, picnic areas, and nature trails.
If you are a retiree or senior citizen looking for Lakewood Ranch Homes for sale, then Cresswind is an ideal option. This active adult neighborhood is age-restricted (age 55 and above) and features 650 single-family homes. Cresswind is a close-knit community focusing on nutrition, fitness, and relationships.
The residents actively participate in fitness and wellness classes, including cardio and yoga. The neighborhood boasts several pickleball and tennis courts that host daily social plays and two swimming pools. Cresswind is also a golf-cart-friendly neighborhood that holds various golf cart parades throughout the year.
Art is also a big deal here, and it's the only neighborhood in Lakewood Ranch with a kiln. There is an art program where several artists teach classes. Cresswind residents are part of various clubs, including book clubs, weekly poker, mahjong, and wine clubs.
Lakewood Ranch is renowned in Florida's Gulf Coast for its award-winning communities, beautiful homes, and world-class amenities, with lots to offer depending on your lifestyle and preferences. Whether you are single, raising a family, or thinking of retiring, Lakewood Ranch provides exceptional living in a close-knit, friendly, and vibrant community.
With more than 20 unique villages, you can always find homes for sale in Lakewood Ranch best suited for you, make new friends, discover new hobbies, participate in community activities and make the most out of your stay on the Gulf Coast.