Comment New Urbanism Provides Inspiration for Project

Located on Beach Access Road 1, Sunflower Beach is situated on 50 acres of a protected dunes reserve that overlooks the Mustang Island coast, adjacent to the newly reopened Palmilla Beach golf course.

By Lisa Brown | May 30, 2019 at 10:00 PM

30-A’s Rosemary Beach was the inspiration for the Sunflower Beach community (shown: pool/dining pavilion).

30-A’s Rosemary Beach was the inspiration for the Sunflower Beach community (shown: pool/dining pavilion).

PORT ARANSAS, TX—Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences is modeled on the New Urbanism school of community design that has been instrumental in the success of Florida’s 30-A communities such as Seaside, Rosemary Beach and Watercolor. New Urbanism was founded in the belief that physical environments have a direct impact on happy, prosperous lives and that well-designed cities create healthy places for both people and businesses.

Early in the planning process, the Sunflower Beach team traveled to 30-A to spend time with local resident and urban planner Mark Schnell. There, the team immersed itself in the architecture, sense of community and hometown roots behind Schnell’s design at Sunflower Beach, which places more emphasis on quality time, walkability, quiet lanes, open green spaces and unique architecture. 30-A’s Rosemary Beach is the particular inspiration for the Sunflower Beach community, especially the architectural mix and color palettes used there.

“Mark Schnell was the mastermind/designer/architect behind Sunflower Beach,” Ryan Richter, on-site sales agent, tells “The plan is to only develop 32 of the 50 acres that were previously owned by the King Ranch family, which owned parts of Port Aransas. They were one of the largest landowners in the US.”

Located on Beach Access Road 1, Sunflower Beach is situated on 50 acres of a protected dunes reserve that overlooks the Mustang Island coast. Sunflower Beach has direct access to Gulf waters and downtown Port Aransas. The Mustang Island Airport is 10 minutes away while the Corpus Christi airport is 40 minutes away, San Antonio is a two-hour drive and Austin/Houston are 3.5 hours away.

The planned mix of custom-built homes, cabins, family villas and condos are complemented by a central beach club within only 100 home sites. Beach homes are priced from the $700,000s, coastal lots from the $170,000s, and cabins and condos from the $300,000s.

The team has nearly completed the first phase of 25 new one- and two-bedroom beach cabins priced from $382,000 to $499,000 at The Camp. The latest home type to arrive at Sunflower is The Row townhomes, a small collection of family villas designed by Texas architect, Michael Imber.

Sunflower’s pool and dining pavilion features include a family pool with shallow beach entry, poolside cabanas, separate adult pool with shaded lounge areas and cascading fountain wall, poolside grill and bar, and entertainment stage and covered pavilion for live music and private events.

Adjacent to Sunflower Beach, Palmilla Beach golf course is celebrating its grand re-opening on June 1 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The course sustained damage during Harvey, which offered management an opportunity to retool the layout and golf options.

“The damage to our golf course caused by Hurricane Harvey gave us a great opportunity, not just to rebuild the golf course, but to reinvent it to be much better, especially for vacationing families,” said Red McCombs, developer of the Palmilla Beach Resort and Golf Community.

The new Palmilla Beach golf course includes nine holes of true links-style golf (the only of its kind in Texas), a three-hole short course called The Loop and a driving range. The course also includes a full-size class-A driving range with five target greens plus a short game practice green. Palmilla Beach golf course is open to the public year-round.

“The improvements to Palmilla Beach Golf were influenced by changing consumer and golf trends,” says Joe Shields, McComb’s grandson. “Play at traditional courses is down and Port A visitors want more variety, entertainment and fun from their vacations.”

Port Aransas is the only established town on Mustang Island and inhabits 5 miles of the 18 mile long barrier island. Mustang Island is located north of Padre Island, the longest barrier island in the world and south of San Jose Island, renowned for its shelling. Running parallel to the mainland, barrier islands protect the coast from the full force of powerful storm waves. Surrounding waters include the Corpus Christi Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, the Lydia Ann Ship Channel and the Corpus Christi Ship Channel.

Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown is an editor for the south and west regions of She has 25-plus years of real estate experience, with a regional PR role at Grubb & Ellis and a national communications position at MMI. Brown also spent 10 years as executive director at NAIOP San Francisco Bay Area chapter, where she led the organization to achieving its first national award honors and recognition on Capitol Hill. She has written extensively on commercial real estate topics and edited numerous pieces on the subject.

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The Camp: Construction Progress

It’s wonderful to see the gorgeous details take shape as The Camp Luxury Cabins approach completion!

For more information about The Camp, please contact us here.



Sunflower Beachfront Lot Close-Out Event - May 25th, 2019

We are excited to announce that Sunflower Beach has only 2 beachfront homesites currently remaining.  We invite you to a special close-out event on Saturday, May 25th over Memorial Day weekend, when we will be offering a one-time exclusive promotion.

At the event, you will have the opportunity to experience first-hand the expansive Gulf views at each level of a custom home through an on-site lift provided for our guests.  Guests will also meet Sunflower Beach’s preferred builders and learn about the unique architectural design opportunities available on these home sites.  With a lot width of 60’, you have the opportunity to own an expansive Gulf-front site and a coveted family retreat in nearby Port Aransas.  These lots have direct access to the dune boardwalk, making it a convenient walk to the beach with Sunflower Beach’s exclusive resort-style amenities.

To our special event guests only, we are offering the following close-out incentives: 

5% discount off the total lot sales price with potential savings up to $45,950 


A closing credit equal to 3 years of paid Resort & Home Owner Association Dues

 *To receive this incentive, a Purchaser must submit a 5% earnest money deposit and a purchase contract over Memorial Day Weekend and close on the homesite within 60 days of the event. 


Available Beachfront Lots:

Event Schedule:

  • Saturday, May 25th

  • 6 - 9:30 pm

  • Live Music

  • Boardwalk Cocktail Bar and Hors d’ oeuvres

  • Beach Bonfire to close

As spots are limited, we encourage you to RSVP as soon as possible via the link below: 

RSVP here 

Our Guest Experience Coordinator, Liz Stark, is available to help book your stay for Memorial Day weekend.  Please contact her at 361-416-1396 if you’d like her assistance.



Texas Highways: SandFest Takes Over Port Aransas This Weekend

Incredible sculptures, delicious food, and fun times to be had April 26-28

Written by: Pam LeBlanc

Photos by:  courtesy Texas SandFest

SandFest Photo.jpg

Nothing feels as good as sand between the toes—especially when you’re strolling a beach admiring sculptures made of the same stuff.

Eighteen master sculptors and 23 semi-pros from around the world gather in Port Aransas April 26-28 to coax works of art from mounds of sand as big as mini-vans at Texas SandFest. The invitational event last year drew about 35,000 visitors.

Prep work begins Thursday, April 25, with most sculpting taking place Friday and Saturday. Judging starts at 1 p.m. Sunday. In past years, festivalgoers have watched the likenesses of Mr. Peanut, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and an angel rise from the sands.

“Some of the sculptors feel like the sand talks to them, and we want to see what it is that the sand is saying,” says Lisa Shelton, executive director of SandFest.

Master sculptor Jeff Strong, 65, of Tacoma, Washington, plans to create a melting scoop of ice cream atop a cone for this year’s competition. His past works have included flowing liquid, marine creatures, and a shell sliced in half to show its inner chambers.

“I love making things that look impossible—big arches you didn’t know you could do in sand or things that are hollowed out,” he says. “The secret is having the right shape, and packing it really perfectly with no dry spots or voids in the middle. Water is what holds it all together.”

Visitors can try their hand at sand sculpting, competing in age categories either solo or as teams. (Register in advance online.)

If you go: Three-day festival admission is $15 for adults; $5 for children; and free for ages 5 and under. Proceeds benefit local charities. For information go to

The festival—complete with live music, a beer garden, and more than 100 food and craft vendors—comes nearly two years after Hurricane Harvey ravaged Port Aransas.

“We are so far ahead on our comeback. From virtually being shutdown to right now, we’re just about fully open on every scale, with the exception of some of our lodging that’s going through reconstruction,” says Jeff Hentz, president of the Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau.

The artwork won’t last forever, but that’s OK with these craftsmen. Strong views his sculpture like a concert or a play, something appreciated in the moment that leaves no trace.

“Once people have seen it and I have a picture of it, then I’m happy for it to return to nature,” he says. “I don’t have room in my living room for all these sculptures, and they’re kind of hard to move.”

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New to the Sunflower Family



Where are you from?

We've lived in Fort Worth for 23 years and are originally from the Austin area.  We have 2 kids, Tyler (26) and Hannah (24) - Tyler lives in Dallas and works at SMU and Hannah is a teacher in Norman, Oklahoma.

How long have you been coming to Port Aransas?

Our family has been coming to Port Aransas for three generations now.  Cathy's grandfather started fishing here back in the 1930's and Chris' father grew up in Ingleside and Refugio. 

What type of home will you be building on your purchased lot at Sunflower Beach?

A Texas/Beach Vernacular 

What about Sunflower Beach drew you to it?

We loved the size of the development and the feeling of community.  We're also excited about being part of the early phase of something that looks to be really special.

What is your favorite activity to do when you are in Port Aransas?

Now that we don't have to look at property any longer we'll have to get back to some of our old favorites.  We love spending as much time on the beach as possible and also time in the kitchen cooking whatever happens to be the fresh catch of the day.    



Sunflower Beach Featured in Unique Homes - Living in Luxury Blog

Sunflower Beach is honored to be featured in the following Unique Homes - Living in Luxury blog post.


Jan 25, 2019


Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences is a beach development that has easy access to the Gulf of Mexico and makes an impression with luxury details and a friendly community.

Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences in Port Aransas, Texas greets you with sun, open spaces, a crisp ocean breeze, and comfort. The newly growing beach community offers a variety of luxury real estate options that will attract families and more. A permanent residence here appeals to those who crave the year-round nice weather, proximity to the beach, and the small-town feel. Equally appealing is the option to generate an income with a great rental program that is successful throughout Port Aransas.



The main amenity at Sunflower — The Beach Club — is now open and the whole family will relish in the specialized perks. A luxury pool is included along with cabanas, an event pavilion, and a kid’s lounge. The separate adult pool and the Bar & Grill are what make The Beach Club ideal for everyone. Ryan Ritcher, from on-site sales at Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences, says, “The club is the perfect way for the whole community to enjoy themselves and get to know each other.”

Ashleigh Robertson from on-site sales also speaks to the sense of community at Sunflower Beach, “It’s a big family here. This is the kind of place where it’s safe enough to send your kid to school on their bike.”

Richter explains that at the sales center they make it a point “to really get to know each individual buyer and understand what they’re really looking for.”



Real estate options include custom homes with modern and approachable design. Coastal lots are available with stunning natural features and easy, driveable access to the beach.

The Camp is another interesting investment that is being offered. According to Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences, “The Camp is thoughtfully designed to take you from the warmth of the Texas sunset to the intimate glow of your own fireplace. Each cabin at Sunflower Beach offers attention to luxury that you won’t find anywhere else on the coast. From its seamless indoor/outdoor spaces to camp-inspired amenities, this collection of cabins offers one-of-a kind architecture, style, and floor plans. Modern poolside condos are in the works and for all these options preferred builders Keystone, Newport Custom Homes, and Conner Coastal are available.


Community Features that you and your family will love include, a sweeping and well-kept lawn, parks and play areas, pleasant streets to stroll down, unforgettable ocean views and stunning dune preserves.

Sunflower’s location in Port Aransas is an added bonus for those settling in or just visiting. The delectable cuisine that is available, the friendly beaches, golf cart accessibility and local culture makes this a fun beach destination that is only continuing to grow.




The Camp: Construction Progress

We’re very excited to share the latest construction photos! To learn more about The Camp, please call 361-749-2366 or register here




The fall and winter seasons are arguably the best time of year to be at Sunflower Beach.  We have beautiful weather and island life is at its finest.  These past weeks have been lively as Port Aransas hosted the first annual Beachtoberfest.  This was 6 weeks of action from the Port A “Live” Music Fest that Sunflower Beach hosted at the Beach Club to the Harvest Moon Regatta.  The Regatta is an incredible open water race from Galveston to Port Aransas.  This now annual event offers something for everyone.  Mark your calendars for 2019!

Sunflower Beach is gearing up to host quite a few turkeys in the community for Thanksgiving.  All of our homes will be occupied by guests to enjoy the holiday on the coast.  We will be hosting a Poolside Happy Hour on Wednesday the 21st from 4-5:30 at the Sunflower Beach Club & Pools.  Come by and ruffle your feathers with your neighbors!

The Sunflower Beach Club

The Sunflower Beach Club

There is plenty of holiday cheer spread throughout island during the month of December in Port Aransas. Saturday, December 1st is the day of parades.  Decorate your golf cart and participate in the Christmas Golf Cart Parade for a great cause.  Donations will be accepted for the local EMS Toy Round up - an annual event to support kids in need of holiday cheer.  The golf cart parade ends at Robert’s Point Park, just in time for the Lighted Boat Parade to begin in the City Marina.  The best boat to experience the parade on is the “Red Dragon” pirate ship!

The Red Dragon Pirate Ship

The Red Dragon Pirate Ship

Also, on Saturday, December 1st and Sunday the 2nd, the Art Center hosts the Island Holiday Market at the Civic Center.  This is a great time to get a jump start on your holiday shopping and #shoplocal.

The 23rd Annual Whooping Crane Festival, from February 21-24, is a fantastic festival to enjoy.  Celebrating the annual return of the cranes to their wintering habitat at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, the Texas Coastal Bend is the only place where you can see the world’s last naturally-occurring population of Whooping Cranes.  Birders from all over the world come to Port Aransas to enjoy this educational festival.  To prepare for the event, every Saturday, Parks and Rec hosts a nature walk starting at the Community Park off Ross Avenue. 

Whooping Crane Festival.png

Soon after winter comes Spring BREAK!  Sunflower Beach is the perfect place to getaway for the week.  We look forward to seeing you then.



New to the Sunflower Family


SFB Dobrodziej Family Photo.jpg

1. Where are you from?

  • Matt was born in Poland, and his family immigrated to Corpus Christi when he was 3 years old (I've attached an article from the Corpus Christi Caller Times Dec 1985, where they profiled his family). Matt's family ended up settling in South Windsor Connecticut where he went to elementary - high school. He then moved to Columbia, South Carolina to attend University where you got a BA and Masters in Economics. We are boosters at the school, and season ticket holders for the USC Gamecock Football team, and return back to SC for most home games during the season! After college he moved around a bit (Virginia, Chicago, Florida) and settled in Austin about 7 years ago.

  • I (Allison) am originally from Corpus Christi (born and raised in Calallen - barely north of CC). At 18 I left Texas and moved to San Diego, San Antonio, and finally ended up attending University in Montreal, Quebec Canada - where I graduated with a B of Comm in Marketing. After graduation I moved to Chicago and lived and worked in the city. In 2007 I decided it was time to move back to Texas, to be close to family, and the only city I could imagine living in full time was Austin. In 2016 we made the decision to move out of Austin into the Hill Country and built a home in Driftwood (about 20 miles southwest of Austin).

2.  How long have you been coming to Port Aransas?

  • I've been coming to Port Aransas since I was a child, and summer 2018 was Matt and the girls (Caitlyn 8, Caroline 4) first year to come to Port Aransas (we've been back 4 times in the last 6 months - he's hooked now!)

3. What type of home did you purchase at Sunflower Beach?

  • We purchased a Dune Lot, and plan to build a modern coastal home.

4. What about Sunflower Beach drew you to it?

  • We loved the intimate feel of the community. It's large enough to have the amenities that we love, but not so large that you get lost in the shuffle with everyone else.  We also love the design element of the neighborhood - a mix of Modern, Beach, and 'victorian' - it makes it feel a lot less 'cookie cutter' than other areas.

5. What is your favorite activity to do when you are in Port Aransas?

  • We love to spend time on the beach, soaking up the salty air and sun.  When we're not at the beach, we're either cooking a huge meal for all our friends and family or supporting a local bar/restaurant nearby!



The Camp: Construction Progress

We’re very excited to share the below construction photos! To learn more about The Camp, please call 361-749-2366 or register here



The Camp Ribbon-Cutting - 2.17.2018

Last Saturday, February 17th, we welcomed visitors to The Camp at Sunflower Beach to celebrate the start of construction with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.  So fun to share the excitement of this wonderful new offering with the community!  Please enjoy the photos of the event and construction progress below:

For more information about The Camp's Luxury Beach Cabins, contact us at 361-749-2366 or visit our webpage here:



New Pool Signage Complete!

Just in time for the Spring/ Summer season, these beautiful signs will welcome you to the Sunflower Beach Club and Pools.  They have been completed and will be installed soon!  

Sunflower Pool Entry Sign.jpg