Monthly Archives August 2011

Rotarians looking to establish club in Highland Beach


August 17, 2011|By DAVID DIPINO
The Delray Beach Rotary Club is looking to help the residents and business leaders of a neighboring town as part of the Highland Beach Rotary Project.

Hoping to establish a Rotary Club in Highland Beach, project organizers plan to kick things off with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres Sept. 12 at the Holiday Inn Highland Beach, 2809 South Ocean Blvd. The event will take place just before the first “Monday Night Football” broadcast of the season, a game pitting the Miami Dolphins against the New England Patriots.

Tom Coyne, spokesman for the Delray Beach Rotary Club, said Rotary International rules specify that a chartered club must have at least 25 members. Coyne said that based on the interest they have seen so far, members of the Highland Beach group are confident they can meet the requirement.

“Currently, we have 28 people interested,” he said. “We’d like to find more men and women to make sure we have the 25 needed to form the club.”

Coyne and Lance Ganis, an insurance agent who is heading the project, said the Highland Beach club will be open to anyone who lives or does business in the town. Highland Beach has a population of nearly 4,000.

Ganis said he was inspired to help organize a new Rotary Club after having a conversation with a few other men at the Highland Beach Library.

“It’s a postcard residential community with just two businesses,” he said. “We want to help serve the needs of Highland Beach’s older population. The economy over the past few years has changed the world and Highland Beach, as well.

“It’s a great area. Currently we’re looking in service projects for Highland Beach.”

Ganis said nearly 54 percent of the town’s residents are over 65 years old.

Full Article


Delray expanding marketing efforts for more tourism dollars

Delray Beach has a successful, vibrant downtown, a pristine beach and has become an entertainment and recreation destination for South Florida. Now it is looking to reinvent itself to attract visitors from farther away.

A key to the new strategy is more hotel rooms. For years, city officials have clamored for more lodging options that could help support the attractions — restaurants, shops and cultural events — they developed downtown. Now, even as other South Florida cities struggle to attract new businesses and tourists, Delray Beach hopes to buck the trend brought on by the struggling economy.

A Hyatt Place hotel is under construction downtown and two more hotels are in the planning stages, and together, officials hope, they will be the catalyst to transforming the city into a regional play spot, and soon a national or international destination.

“Delray Beach is a unique market,” said Scott Webb, president of Kolter Commercial, the company developing the Hyatt Place Pineapple Grove. “It’s not just a seasonal location.”

Delray Beach, Webb said, has positioned itself as a true destination location, offering an array of shopping and dining options that provide a base for hotel business all year long.

“The location was fantastic,” Webb said of the corner of Northeast First Street and Second Avenue in the heart of the Pineapple Grove Arts District.

With 134 rooms and two blocks from Atlantic Avenue, Hyatt Place is expected to open in September 2012 and cater to visitors looking for mid-priced accommodations.

One of the other new hotels — with 60 rooms, retail and office space — would be on the old library site on Southeast Fourth Avenue; a 128-room Fairfield Inn & Suites would be on West Atlantic Avenue.