• Houses starting as low as $149,900 in the waterfront community.
  • Heritage Harbor Ottawa is only 90 minutes from Chicago.
  • The community currently has 82 residents and 132 boaters.

Located on 142 acres in Ottawa, Ill., Heritage Harbor is waiting just 90 minutes from Chicago. Boasting a 450-slip marina, community pools (a new pool in the Cottages at Heron’s Landing neighborhood is under construction and will be ready by Memorial Day), restaurants and tiki bars, Heritage Harbor offers what Tammy Barry, director of sales and marketing, believes is the ideal vacation or retirement home for baby boomers and investing millennials.

Plus, the waterfront Ottawa community is developing a home for nearly every price point.

“We kind of went into it because the people from the Chicago and [suburbs] – it’s very limited to the locations within an hour drive to either go for the weekend, or retire and remain close to family,” Barry said.

One of the biggest perks, according to Barry, is the proximity with which Heritage Harbor sits in relation to Chicago. With instant access to the Illinois River, the community is also parallel to bike path, and there is hiking at Starved Rock State Park just a few minutes down the road.

“It’s very high-energy over by our marina district,” Barry said. “You have the restaurant going, a tiki bar, boats coming in and out, homeowners jumping on bikes… otherwise they are hiking around the marina.”

One notable thing that Barry pointed out was the implementation of traditional coastal architecture. She said the mint greens, pastel blues and yellows, and crisp whites allow residents to have “that east coastal feel” with only a short drive from the city.

“We have a lot of options for buyers, too,” she added. “You can buy just a lot and do a custom home, or we have inventory spec homes, traditional town homes, modern town homes, and we have condos.”

Heritage Harbor is also looking into the “tiny house” movement with the new Cottages at Heron’s Landing. The cottages come in a range of sizes starting at 560 square feet up to more than 1,100 square feet. These are modestly priced at $149,900 and $239,900, depending on the style and layout of the cottages.

The cottages are located within 500-foot walking distance of the marina.

Heritage Harbor Ottawa is an extension of the town of Ottawa and is able to capitalize on the city’s services and public utilities.

“Low maintenance is something people are very attracted to,” Barry said.

Heritage Harbor Ottawa currently has 82 residents and 132 boaters in the marina. Barry said the community is very diverse with young couples mingling with retirees.

Barry also said that although 2015 was a slower year sales-wise compared to 2014, Heritage Harbor is on track to see its biggest year yet in 2016.

Email Britt Chester

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