Must-Do Experiences in Lake Nona

Ready to move to the Lake Nona area? Great! Start with Live Oak Estates, the gated ICI Homes community that features one-acre lots to the east of Orlando’s Lake Nona.

FYI — hurry with this part. Only 16 lots set among oaks, pines, and fresh-water lakes and ponds, remain available. And Live Oak Estates is the only gated community in the Lake Nona area offering such spacious home sites.

But, after you’ve nabbed your lot and selected your customized ICI Homes plan, it’s time to prep for the things you’ll do as an area resident, once the house keys are yours.lake-nona-live-oak-estates

Eat at Canvas Restaurant

It may be the quintessential local spot, sited on — what else? — a lake. Chef Bryan Thoman’s nightly dinner menu features American cuisine accented by Florida’s southern and Latin heritages. Fairly yummy, yes? But Canvas isn’t all sit-down dinners.

The front of the building is devoted to a market where morning commuters can grab fresh coffee and pastries, or non-commuters can order the largest latte and camp out at one of the market’s communal tables. There’s all sorts of nourishing breakfast and lunch fare available until 8 p.m. And, all sorts of gifts, books and home accents — some made by local artists — for sale.

Look at the Glass House, Next Door

To Canvas Restaurant, that is. Imagine a small cottage built entirely of multi-colored, square-ish panes of stained glass. That’s Lake Nona’s Glass House, which shares the same lakeshore as Canvas Restaurant. The Glass House is the work of Brooklyn, New York artist Tom Fruin. It’s part of his ICON Series, with previous installations in Brooklyn, New York and Europe. His work here reflects innumerable sunlight angles by day, and glows at night, when it’s lit from within. You can rent it as a backdrop for special events, such as that family wedding next spring.

Admire the Beacon and the Code Wall

More outdoor art and beloved landmarks in Lake Nona Town Center. Both the Beacon and the Code Wall are fusions of art and science. They’re collaborative designs by Lake Nona artist JEFRE, New York-based artist Michael Counts and 3-Legged Dog, a production studio specializing in large, experimental work.

The Beacon’s prime time is night time, when the 60-foot, funnel-like structure of aluminum panels radiates and pulsates with video, music and interactive elements. It wants you to watch it, and sing and dance with it.

The Code Wall not only serves a practical purpose as exterior masking for a parking deck, but also as a puzzle — binary code is written in its dichroic glass and lit at night by LED lights. Try to decipher its message! Hint: it’s about Lake Nona. Posted plaques help you read all the way around the Code Wall.

Attend Lake Nona Nights

Theses are fun community gatherings each Thursday night at Crescent Park from 6-8 p.m. You’ll enjoy live music, a local market and food from local establishments.

Other local events include Tuesday-night food-truck roundups from 5-8 p.m., at Lake Nona Town Center and, sometimes family-friendly movies on Saturdays in the park.

Sounds like fun, right? Ready to set up Live Oak residency? As Florida’s Custom Home Builder, ICI Homes can help. Click here for info on Live Oak Estates.