Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris is expanding in the Florida Keys with the development of the Valhalla Island Resort.
Morris presented plans for the oceanfront resort in Marathon, Florida, on Tuesday. Once constructed, the resort will be the largest resort property in the Florida Keys.
The Valhalla Island Resort sits on 175 acres and will feature 110 units. Resort accommodations will include one, two, three and four-bedroom cottages, a master lodge, general store, restaurants, a spa, swimming pools and fishing marina, according to a Bass Pro Shops news release.
The deep water accessible, full-service marina will give fishers access to sailfish, swordfish, tarpon, bonefish, permit and snook fishing.
“Conversation-based practices” will be stressed during the construction and maintenance of the resort. Solar and geothermal power, rainwater harvesting and storage, and orienting buildings to enhance natural ventilation will be included in the resort’s design, the news release states.
In addition, the resort will be vehicle-free and all surfaces will be permeable.
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The Valhalla Island Resort is part of Bass Pro Shops’ Signature Nature Resort experiences, which aim to connect folks with nature. Popular established resorts include Big Cedar Lodge on Table Rock Lake, Big Cedar Golf and Big Cypress Lodge in Memphis.
Inspiration for the Valhalla Island Resort comes from the heritage and history of the Long Key Fishing Camp, founded in 1908. The tourist camp put Florida on the map for sportfishing. It included a two-story hotel and several cottages. Over the years, the camp welcomed U.S. presidents, celebrities, and folks like Ernest Hemmingway and Zane Grey.
Unfortunately, the camp was destroyed by the Labor Day Hurricane in 1935.
Bass Pro Shops is working with architecture firms Hart Howerton and Nunzio Marc DeSantis Architects to design the resort. Construction of the Valhalla Island Resort is scheduled to be completed within the next two years.
In addition to the resort itself, Bass Pro Shops has acquired nearby hotel properties to renovate into apartment buildings for workforce housing.