Serenity Bay was purchased in 2004, only days before Hurricane Charlie blew into town. It’s owners; Barbara and Don Ihlefeld are Commercial Contractors from the north. We were pleasantly surprised to find that our historic motel had survived the scorn of Charlie unscathed.
The following season we enthusiastically began the renovations necessary to restore it back to its original small-town, Oz-like grandeur. I am pleased to report, once again, it is deserving of its original name.
A never ending, ever changing, fun-filled dream and project, Serenity Bay has slowly become a reality under the playful supervision of myself, my husband, and the motels manager and handyman, Tom Slusarz. Our goal being to create an enchanting and serene get-away that can be enjoyed and shared by my family, friends, and the public.
Don and I have five daughters, three son-in-laws, and seven lively grandchildren who try to meet annually at our little motel for family reunions. We believe that Matlacha offers a truly unique experience that cannot be found anywhere else in Florida.
If you like watching the antics of Florida’s wildlife, there is no better place to be than at Serenity Bay. Nature will perform for your pleasure! It is not uncommon for Dolphins to play in the bay and Manatee’s to swim along the seawall. Eagles, Pelicans and Osprey swoop into the waters to feed, while Cranes, Egrets, and Herons, meander through the yard. Always, fish jump to taunt you to cast a line from the dock, while Otters like little thieves, lie in wait to steal you bait. The amenities of the island are endless.