From Then To Now Wow Jim and Marta Batmasian

It was 1984…D. Robert Graham was the Governor…a buried 18th century cannon was discovered on Boca’s beach, much to the delight of treasure hunters, renewing hopes that a Spanish ship wrecked o the shore would be found. Croquet was all the rage, with the likes of Zsa Zsa Gabor, Joan Fontaine, George Plimpton and Tova Borgnine coming to Boca for the Celebrity Croquet Gala benefitting the financially distressed NPR (National
Public Radio)…in the midst of it all, Miss Gabor announced she was smitten
with a gentleman she described as a Tunisian king who spoke Hungarian and looked like Omar Sharif with dimples. Liz Whitney Tippett, a wealthy American socialite and philanthropist, who was a champion horsewoman and prominent owner/breeder of Thoroughbred racehorses, arrived in her signature racing colors – a fuchsia pantsuit and infamous purple Rolls-Royce. Also in the news was “The Florida East Coast Thanksgiving Holiday Storm”, which produced extensive damage, widespread coastal flooding, severe beach erosion, and the grounding of the freighter Mercedes I for several months along the coastal town of Palm Beach. It ended up on the beach up against the sea wall of Palm Beach socialite, Mollie Wilmot, thereby littering one of Florida’s most expensive stretches of real estate. On the sports front, people still talk about the ad that many have called the greatest Super Bowl commercial of all time: Apple’s “1984” commercial, the
one that launched the Macintosh and led Apple to more than $150 million in sales in the first 100 days of the Mac’s debut. The ad quietly ran in 13 markets around the country in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl, including a station in Boca Raton for one very special reason…Boca was
home to IBM’s PC division, and Apple, some said, wanted to poke “Big Blue” right in the eye. Oh, and let’s not forget the movie “Where The Boys Are ‘84”, directed by Hy Averback (known for his smash movie “M*A*S*H”), that was
released on April 6, 1984 and actually filmed in Boca Raton at the Royal Palm Yacht & Country Club. Truth be told, the  film was a critical and commercial failure. It is into this eclectic world that Jim and Marta Batmasian entered. Having established a successful real estate portfolio
in Massachusetts, which they still own, they had moved from Boston to Boca Raton with the intent to “retire” and raise their two young boys.
That idea lasted all of a couple of months. In the 1980’s, because of an explosion of development to the west of the center of the city, eastern areas began to decay, including the Downtown corridor…the old Boca Raton Mall was experiencing higher vacancies and was occupied by borderline tenants, mostly due to the opening of Town Center to the west. IBM had canceled
a planned $50 million expansion because of Florida’s disputed new unitary
tax. Jim and Marta came, saw, realized how much potential
Boca Raton had, instinctively knew what the future could be like for this beautiful little town of just 60,000 people, and absolutely wanted to be an integral part of that…Read The Full Article Here