KEN and Margaret Appleton traded sea views for a rainforest vista when they sold their Kings Beach apartment last year and moved to Buderim's new over-50s lifestyle community, Nature's Edge.
"It's been a huge change for us, going from a 180-degree sea view to a rainforest," Mr Appleton said. "But we absolutely love it."
They wake up every morning to the sound of native birds calling, he said.
The couple are among 49 residents at the new $100 million lifestyle resort, which hosts 25 homes and has another 30 in construction. A total of 190 are due for completion by mid-2017.
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson on Friday turned the first sod at a $2.5 million leisure centre now being constructed at the site.
The centre will feature a heated indoor pool, sauna, spas and a gymnasium.
Phil Gabel, director of developer Propcorp (Queensland), expects the centre will be popular among the "young, active and mobile" resort residents.
"People usually come from (within) 20km of this area although some have come from Brisbane," Mr Gabel said.
"They downsize, sell their existing home for about $600,000 and they move in here for about $450,000 average, and put the capital in their pocket to enjoy travel."
The Appletons' architecturally designed, 8-star energy-rated house is private and spacious, with a low-maintenance courtyard and is "perfect for entertaining", Mr Appleton said. It also has a direct NBN connection.
"Our friends are very jealous," he said. "We used to be on ADSL2 and, in the last year in particular, our speed went down by one third to what it used to be. Here we've got full speed - as much as we want to pay for."
Mr Appleton was an academic and Mrs Appleton a librarian before they retired 12 years ago and moved to the Coast from Rockhampton. They loved living by the beach but reached an age where they felt it was "time for a move".
Mrs Appleton said they chose Nature's Edge because of the tranquil setting but also because Propcorp (Queensland) promised that the finished development would facilitate a connected, vibrant community of active residents.
"It involves a community," she said. "That's what we're looking forward to - being part of a community."
The leisure centre construction project is expected to take 10 months to complete and will provide employment for more than 50 tradespeople and 12 consultants.
Meanwhile work on the next residential stage is well under way, with 45 villas now being marketed.
Nature's Edge is located at 25 Owen Creek Road, off Mons Road and near Kunara Organic Health Food Store.
- Indoor heated pool and spa
- Art and craft studio
- Library lounge
- 30-seat cinema
- Dance floor
- Sauna and massage areas
- Sun deck
- Indoor / outdoor bar
- Teppanyaki BBQ
- Large alfresco dining and lounge areas