April 18, 2017

Life at The Strand Marin

Appealing to people from all walks of life, The Strand at Loch Lomond Marina is the ideal starting point for life’s new adventures. And for lifelong sailing enthusiast Jim Cole and his wife, Holly, it was the only starting point for life’s next journey. Ready to escape the hectic daily life of the city and get closer to the water, they found their way to The Strand. This is their story.

As decades-long residents of San Francisco, Jim and Holly called the city home but yearned for the warmer months spent sailing near their bayside summer home in Nova Scotia. After selling their summer home, their time in San Francisco was missing one important detail: the wind in their sails. Having retired and finding himself with more free time, the long stretches away from the water became far from ideal for Jim, who lights up recounting the time he braved the Atlantic leg of the intense Clipper Round the World Race as the most senior sailor at age 72. “We loved living in the city. We had a wonderful life there,” Jim recalled. “But it was time for a change.” So, when Holly saw an ad for The Strand in Marin magazine, they both instantly thought it would be a perfect fit for the next chapter in their lives.

Still, moving from their 20-year home was not easy. Not the types to rush such a major decision, Jim and Holly searched from Novato to Sausalito for all their options, only growing more convinced as the search went on that The Strand was the right place for them. “I’ve sailed a good part of the world, and this is the closest you’ll find to a Mediterranean climate,” explained Jim. “The weather’s just amazing all year.” And it was going to be theirs – the decision was made.

After visiting The Strand, Jim and Holly decided to move forward on their journey and purchase a two-story detached home. Jim was immediately struck by the friendliness of the sales team. Referring to the sales person who helped him, Jim said, “She was incredibly helpful during the home buying process – very accommodating, friendly and quick to respond to everything. She kept us in the loop.” And, as far as the home they chose, Jim said, “The first-floor master suite was a real selling point. And the upstairs loft, which we use an office, overlooks the living room. We even have space for a garden and a private patio.” It was everything they wanted, and the entire experience left them reassured that The Strand was the right choice.

Since moving to The Strand, Jim and Holly have started to settle in and have become deeply involved in the community. They joined the all-volunteer Loch Lomond Yacht Club, met Andy of Andy’s Local Market and take regular walks out over the breakwater with their dog, Sailor, to take in the views of the San Francisco Bay and The Strand’s peninsula community park. Having just put the finishing touches on their new garden oasis at home, Jim and Holly are looking forward to more time on the water. And their sailboat is docked just a couple hundred feet away from home in Loch Lomond Marina. In the meantime, they are enjoying all that Marin offers – from the Marin Symphony and MPSF Speaker Series to the renowned farmers’ market.

“One of the hardest parts about leaving the Peninsula was moving away from all the friends we had made over the last twenty years,” Jim recounted. “But, looking back, you could say that we’ve hardly given city life a second thought. This has really been a great move for us. We love that The Strand’s not a 55+ community. And, because it’s all new, everyone comes here without preconceived notions. We’re all in this together. We’re making new friends from all walks of life and in all places in life. It keeps the mind fresher, more active – it’s refreshing and rejuvenating.”

When asked his opinion on The Strand, Jim recounts a conversation with a passerby in front of his home, “She was driving, saw the new homes and was asking about the neighborhood. I’ll tell you what you what I told her. This is the right place at the right time for us – couldn’t be happier. It’s the absolute best choice we’ve ever made.”