Though the vision was Josh Freeman’s, it’s the business savvy and TLC of Michelle Freeman that makes Bayside one impressive beachside community in Delaware
You’ve worked hard and sacrificed a lot to get where you are, so perhaps the time has come to give yourself a very special gift. Would you prefer a second-home escape from the stress of the everyday, or are you yearning for a brand-new primary residence that makes you feel as if you were on vacation all year long? Whatever your predilection, there is a paradise community waiting for you in Selbyville that may just be the answer to all residential prayers, and it’s called, simply, Bayside.
It is the vision of Joshua Freeman, who sometime around 1998 decided that he wanted to create a golf-oriented counterpart to the highly touted Sea Colony, which Josh’s father, Carl M. Freeman, had successfully developed around a tennis theme back in the 1970s.
“Josh knew from the outset that he wanted a state-of-the-art golf course as the nucleus of the community,” recalled Michelle Freeman, who ultimately assumed the presidency of the Carl M. Freeman Companies after husband Josh tragically lost his life in a 2006 helicopter accident. “It was also important to him that the community be developed in harmony with the natural environment and provide a beautiful backdrop to Eastern Shore living. So, he put together a development team of about six people, which included me, and we’d go out there every day, scouring the area for plots and property we could acquire to grow our would-be community. Looking back on it, those were fun times.”
Approximately seven years and 1,000 bucolic acres later, the community known as Bayside had its very first resident — and the state of Delaware had its very first Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course, with a panoramic view of the bay.
Just living in a Carl M. Freeman community carries with it a certain cachet. For more than 65 years, the Freeman Companies has created innovative and inviting places to live, work, shop and play. It has developed and managed more than five million square feet of commercial space for shopping center and office use, servicing more than 1.1 million square feet of retail in the process. It’s also developed more than 20,000 homes in 50 residential communities, many of which have won prestigious awards.
Clearly, Bayside is no exception to the uncompromised standards of excellence, comfort and convenience for which the Freeman Companies and its president-CEO are nationally renowned. The neo-traditional coastal community, not three miles from the beach, is essentially structured to offer something for everyone. Featuring the quaint allure of an
intimate yet thriving village community, Bayside has three basic home types to choose from. So, whether you see yourself in a townhouse, villa-style duplex or traditional single-family dwelling, there is a Bayside design waiting to be custom built for you. Two- to five-bedroom homes can range from a cozy 2,000 sq. ft., all the way to a more expansive 3,200 sq. ft. and beyond. Equally encouraging is the fact that most Bayside home values begin in the mid-300s.
To see the public response to their Sun Ridge Crest neighborhood, for example, one would find no evidence of there having been a real-estate slump, not with more than 25 brand-new homes currently being readied for their eager occupants as of this writing. It’s not all that surprising, considering the Sun Ridge Recreational Center not only boasts two pools and five tennis courts but also a cardiovascular room, basketball court and even a full-service café. Meanwhile, there are two other exciting neighborhoods being developed at Bayside currently, called Coastal Crossing and Sea Grass Bend, which are oriented toward The Point and the bay, offering a decidedly coastal feel.
No matter which neighborhood you ultimately select, however, expect to find the hallmarks of convenience right at your doorstep, as Bayside has a mini-mall on its grounds that includes a Harris Teeter grocery store, handmade ice-cream shop, pizzeria, wine & spirits store, Subway sandwich shop and a PNC Bank branch. Bayside also provides miles of pristine trails for walking, hiking or biking, a children’s playground, year-round security patrols, beach shuttles that run to Fenwick Island State Park in season and a host of community activities that range from tennis, golf and swimming lessons to movie nights for teens, book clubs, walking/biking tours, community-sponsored holiday parties and a private pier designed to accommodate fishing, kayaking and other water-related activities.
At the heart of this one-of-a-kind community, however, lies its pièce de résistance: The incomparable Freeman Stage at Bayside. Now in its sixth sensational season, the Freeman Stage is an outdoor performing-arts venue set right at Bayside’s town center that has attracted over 120,000 audience members with a diverse roster of dance, theatre, live music and children’s performances. This year alone, 53 shows — many by stars of international renown — will constitute its performance season, with 65% of them free to the public.
“Our mission at Bayside is to offer something even more essential than a beautiful, top-quality home,” offered Michelle, who in April was named one of Washington D.C.’s 10 most influential women by Elle magazine, “we want to create a total living experience that will enrich the lives of all it touches.”
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