Check out the most popular forums frequented by residents and prospective residents of The Villages, and you’ll see the most often discussed community (other than The Villages itself, of course) is Solivita.
Solivita is a national award-winning retirement community located in Kissimmee, approximately an hour and a half south of The Villages. Solivita is being built by AV Homes, a national builder well known for their expertise and experience in the 55+ market.
In many ways Solivita is similar to The Villages, but as with most of our other head-to-head comparisons, Solivita is much smaller in size.
The biggest complaint a lot of people voice about The Villages is the location. Besides what’s immediately available right there in the community (and granted, it’s a lot) there’s not a whole lot else around.
People who want to feel like they’ve got more options close by may want to check out Solivita. While it’s not directly in Orlando, it still sits in what’s called the “Attraction Zone”, so it’s near the theme parks like Disney, plenty of restaurants, and all the shopping and entertainment options you could imagine.
A lot of people I know get part time jobs at the theme parks after they move to Florida for retirement just to keep busy and help fund vacations and such. If something like that is on your radar, Solivita would be the perfect location for it.
As is to be expected, along with a smaller community comes fewer amenities, but the ones they do have at Solivita are first rate.
While some communities try to cram everything into one giant recreation center, Solivita’s amenities are spread out across a handful of centers, much like The Villages does with their amenities.
The Waterfront Galleries include a two-story art and ceramics studio, fully stocked library, three computer labs and game room.
The Riviera Spa and Fitness Center encompasses indoor and outdoor pools, two spas, indoor track, dance studio and sauna.
The upscale resort-style complex The Palms spans 19,000-square-feet showcasing an expansive fitness center, aerobics studio, residents’ business center, members’ club, a 4,000-square-foot heated outdoor lap and splash pool, fireplace piazza and social gathering deck. There are also two heated spas, seven Har-Tru tennis courts, 11 pickleball courts and two lighted bocce ball courts.
Like The Villages, Solivita is a golf cart community, so getting around is a cinch. And, with 4,300 acres of Florida’s natural beauty, there’s plenty of great outdoors to explore. You can even walk, jog or bike the scenic five-mile walking path.
Interested in continuing to learn and grow as a person in retirement?
Every week at Solivita dozens of classes are available to strengthen your body, enrich your mind and make your spirit soar. Here’s just a sampling of what’s offered:
Aqua Dynamics, Step Aerobics, Tai Chi, Body Conditioning, Low Impact Aerobics, Relaxation, Yoga, Zumba, Ceramics, Watercolors, Oil Painting, Jewelry Making, Pottery, Stained Glass, Calligraphy, Note Card Design, Photography, Line Dancing, Ballroom Dancing, Bingo, Bridge, Cribbage, Mah-Jong, Wine Tasting, Lawn, Bocce, Chess, Billiards, Darts, Croquet, Baking, Cooking, and more.
Two Championship Golf Courses
Solivita features two Championship golf courses, The Oaks Course and The Cypress Coarse.
Designed by Ron Garl, The Oaks Course is bordered by a hundred-year-old oak tree strung with hammocks for shady lounging, lush colorful greenery and abundant streams and lakes. Meticulously created to blend in beautifully with Solivita’s 4,300 acres of natural wetlands and hardwoods, this 18-hole, 7,000-yard masterpiece rewards you with exquisite views and an unmatched golfing experience.
Originally designed by Devlin / Von Hagge and recently modified by renowned golf architect George Clifton, The Cypress Course is a 6,800-yard course is home to sparkling lakes and water features complemented by white-sand bunkers. The Cypress golf course proves challenging to even the most experienced golfers.
Kind of like The Villages, homes at Solivita are spread throughout a collection of welcoming neighborhood enclaves.
Solivita’s Tuscan-inspired homes await you in a portfolio of more than 20 brilliant floor plans. These thoughtfully designed homes reveal open floor plans, bright kitchens, stunning great rooms, spacious and dual owner’s suites, luxurious baths, and inviting outdoor living spaces.
Discovery Days Program
Like The Villages offers with their Lifestyle Preview Program, Solivita offers a chance to live like a resident for 3 days and 2 nights with their Discovery Days Program.
You’ll stay in a fully-furnished guest home, have all-access privileges to Solivita’s recreational facilities and you’ll even have a golf cart to explore the community.
If you’re considering communities like The Villages, but are of the belief that bigger doesn’t always mean better, Solivita is worth a look.