Bonita Bay Group Web Sites Win Three International WebAwards

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Three of Bonita Bay Group's revamped Web sites have won 2007 WebAwards from the Web Marketing Association, including first-place honors for Verandah.com in the real estate category. The community Web site for Mediterra and the corporate site for Bonita Bay Group, also entered in the real estate division, received Standard of Excellence Awards, given to entries that achieved a certain score.

Three of Bonita Bay Group's revamped Web sites have won 2007 WebAwards from the Web Marketing Association, including first-place honors for Verandah.com in the real estate category. The community Web site for Mediterra and the corporate site for Bonita Bay Group, also entered in the real estate division, received Standard of Excellence Awards, given to entries that achieved a certain score.

The winners were recently announced by the Web Marketing Association, an organization dedicated to setting high standards for Internet marketing and Web site development. Entries, judged by industry leaders, were evaluated on seven criteria: design, innovation, content, use of technology, interactivity, copywriting and navigation.

Verandah's site, noted one judge, was "the best site I have seen in this judging."

The competition, now in its 11th year, attracted more than 2,400 Web sites from 40 countries. Awards were presented in 96 categories.

"It's quite an honor to be able to say that Verandah's Web site is the best in the real estate industry," said Amanda Wilson Watkins, vice president of sales and marketing for Bonita Bay Group. "Each of the three sites we entered was recognized with an award or honor by our peers."

Bonita Bay Group's Web sites were recently redesigned to offer a better sense of the lifestyle experiences at Verandah and Mediterra, said Terry McKyton, director of e-marketing for Bonita Bay Group. "We really wanted to give visitors to our sites a better feel of what it's like to live in these communities."

Verandah's site, which received a perfect score, opens with an interactive illustration that offers a perspective of moving along the community's 1.75-mile stretch of the Orange River. As the Web user moves the cursor, the illustration pans to the right and activates the site's animation - a breeze tousles a woman's hair as she strolls along a riverfront boardwalk, an angler gets a tug on his fishing line, a young girl waves from a tree swing and a woman rocks on a front porch. Palm fronds and plants rustle in the wind.

Both Verandah and Mediterra's Web sites (MediterraNaples.com) offer video footage of residents talking about the lifestyle experience at their community; photo galleries of homes and amenities; and home finders that allow users to search by price point, home type and features.

The corporate Web site (BonitaBayGroup.com) offers similar interactive features, in addition to video footage, a home finder for all Bonita Bay Group communities and news items. "There's also a calendar of events and activities for each community," said McKyton.

The corporate Web site was honored earlier this year as a 2007 Webby Awards official honoree.

Bonita Bay Group is a diversified company involved in the planning, development, sales and management of master-planned communities, free-standing recreational amenities and commercial facilities. The company is respected for its commitment to meticulous planning, environmental stewardship, integrity and attention to detail. Bonita Bay Group employs more than 1,300 individuals and is currently developing seven master-planned communities - Bonita Bay, Shadow Wood Preserve, Mediterra, TwinEagles, Verandah, Sandoval and Murphy's Landing - along with 14 golf courses and two marinas. Additional information about the company is available at http://www.BonitaBayGroup.com.

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Jennifer Laderer