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Date of Issue: November 11, 2009

Commission OKs massage service

Relax, no tension, no worries, the Bradenton Beach City Commission agreed to allow a massage therapy service at the Silver Surf resort.

The commission unanimously voted Nov. 5 to approve a businesswoman’s special exception request to relocate her massage service from the Bridgewalk complex to the Silver Surf.

The city planning and zoning board recommended approval in October.

Amanda Escobio of Island Wellness filed the application, requesting the move from 109 First St. N. to 1301 Gulf Drive N. She plans to provide health and wellness services — primarily massage therapy — in a treatment room at the resort, as well on the resort’s private beach property.

Escobio said other resorts in other areas — from St. Petersburg to Key West in Florida, as well as in Hawaii and Mexico, offer massage services on the beach.

“It seems like a natural progression here,” she said.

The relocation request was put into the special exception process because Escobio is moving from a commercial zoning district that allows for mercantile, food and beverage and professional operations to an R-3 district, which allows for higher-density residential occupancies and “compatible” activities in association with a hotel/motel development.

“This professional services businesses is allowed only as an accessory use” to the Silver Surf, according to building official Steve Gilbert.

Escobio emphasized that her business operation would not require any new construction.

Silver Surf owner Barbara Rodocker also endorsed the massage service. “This is going to add to our community,” she said. “It’s a great project for the Bradenton Beach area. It’s a great project for bringing people here.”

Planning board members had raised a few questions about the proposal, including whether city regulations restricted the number of accessory uses to a hotel and whether any additional signs would be needed.

In addition to the hotel operation, scooters, bikes and boats are rented from the Silver Surf, but Gilbert said there are no limits on the number of accessory uses that might be permitted at the property.

Regarding signs, in its motion recommending approval of the special exception, the planning board included a statement that all signage meet city code and a signage plan be put into place.

Gilbert said last week that he met with Rodocker and Escobio and there is a “workable solution” to consolidate signage.

The commission unanimously supported the board’s recommendation.

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