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Coffee Talk
Business Observer Friday, Nov. 13, 2009 11 years ago

Realtor tries to rock marketplace

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Jim Soda, one of more prominent residential Realtors in Manatee and Sarasota counties, has tried all sorts of marketing techniques to sell houses during the recession.

Jim Soda, one of more prominent residential Realtors in Manatee and Sarasota counties, has tried all sorts of marketing techniques to sell houses during the recession.

But up until now he has yet to go to Rolling Stone, Spin and Billboard magazine to showcase properties.

Of course, Soda had never listed a house with a 60-foot guitar-shaped pool in the backyard before, either.

“We're giving this house a whole new marketing theme,” Soda tells Coffee Talk. “We are trying to create a buzz for the home outside the area.” The 5,108-square-foot house is on one acre on the Manatee River, in a gated community in east Manatee County. Listed for $1.5 million — down fro $1.9 million — the home has four bedrooms, five and half bathrooms, 170 feet of river frontage and two dual-sided fireplaces.

Bradenton-area entrepreneur Aaron Dorfman, who has worked in the real estate and auto and home insurance business, built the house in 2004. Sarasota-based Holiday Pools built the pool.

Dorfman, an amateur musician with a guitar-playing son, says he first thought about building a guitar-shaped pool at his house more than 25 years ago, when he saw one while attending a party in Bel Air, Calif. He was instantly hooked on the idea when he heard that guitar legend Eric Clapton had rented that house.

Local Realtors know of one other home in the Sarasota-Bradenton region with a guitar-shaped pool: The Bird Key home of Brian Johnson, singer and guitar player for rock band AC/DC.

And at Dorfman's home, the music theme doesn't stop at the pool. Other musical aspects that dot the two-story home include a bathroom wall that replicates Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon album cover.

Despite the unique music features, the house has faced a plight similar to that of other homes on the Gulf Coast during the recession: Lots of nibbles, but no bites.

Soda, a Realtor with Sarasota-based Prudential Palms Realty, is embarking on a new marketing campaign for the house that includes pitching it to music industry magazines such as Rolling Stone and daily newspapers in music-rich cities such as Memphis, Nashville and Los Angeles.

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