CES Winter Haven & Cabana Club: A 5-Star RV Resort from the Ground Up
Cabana Club Resort isn’t your usual resort. You won’t find it next to a beach, but you will find more than 60 vacation cottages and over 400 RV sites in the heart of central Florida.
“Phase one is already complete, and there are already RVs out there,” said Jeffery Odum, a sales rep at CES Winter Haven. “We’re still working on it, but a lot of the big amenities are up and running, so guests are out there experiencing everything it has to offer.”
What does it have to offer? For starters, a water park, a mini-golf course, a gym, an arcade, dog parks, cabanas, and more. Plus, no resort is complete without palm trees.
To make Cabana Club even more special, it’s all powered by locals in central Florida. The branch team at CES Winter Haven supplied all the electrical material, and Wally Mock with Heart of Florida Electric brought it to life.
“This definitely puts our name out there in our community,” said Wally Mock, owner of Heart of Florida Electric. “We only had local contractors and local suppliers out there, so this gives the people in the community something they can come and see and feel good about.”
For Wayne Watkins, the branch manager at CES Winter Haven, Cabana Club means a lot to him and the local community as well.
“Cabana Club is a boom for everyone who lives and works here,” Watkins said. “Before, it was just trees and groves, but now Auburndale has a brand-new Amazon facility and a big sports complex right next door. It’ll help bring in more tourists and more businesses. Being a part of that growth is special to us.”
The Teams Behind Cabana Club
Ask Wally, Jeff, and Wayne about Cabana Club, and they’ll tell you that this resort’s progress has been nothing short of incredible.
“It literally went from dirt to a 5-star resort in less than a year,” Wally said.
“Cabana Club just appeared out of nowhere,” Jeff added. “It used to be a nursery and old farmland, but now it’s an exclusive RV park and resort that has everything you could ever want.”
When Wally got the offer to handle the installation, he went straight to CES Winter Haven for the supplies to power it. After all, he, Jeff, and Wayne go way back. All three have worked together for the past 30 years.
“Loyal customers like Wally are hard to find,” Jeff explained. “It’s one of the best customer relationships I’ve ever had. We’ve done business together even before he started his own company.”
That shared history is what keeps Wally coming back to CES Winter Haven. Plus, you can’t beat the 80 years of experience Jeff and Wayne have in this industry.
“I can call them any time of day,” Wally explained. “Whatever I need, they’ll do anything to make it happen. We’ve built such a good relationship over the years. They’re very accommodating and have no problem getting on it.”
And Wally doesn’t just know the guys at CES Winter Haven. He’s also been a family friend to the owners of Cabana Club long before they ever started this new project.
“I’ve done work for their family for years,” Wally said. “To watch this idea develop into what it is now and to help them do all the electrical work on it was really nice. Knowing the family, it feels good helping their business succeed.”
All the Small Things
Jeff can take a little bit of credit for that success, too. He was out on the job site almost every day, coordinating deliveries and trying to get a head start on whatever Wally needed the next day.
“I lived out there,” Jeff laughed. “All I could think when we got this job was not to mess it up. At least once a day, I was there to stay ahead of the ball game. I’m very hands-on with every project, but especially with this one. It was bigger than anything we’ve ever had before.”
Cabana Club wasn’t just bigger; it also had a lot more products. CES Winter Haven supplied everything from Tamlite LED fixtures to cables, pipes, poles, switchgear, conduit, and more.
“It was a complete branch effort,” Jeff said, “from the driver making special runs late in the afternoon, all the way down to me and Wayne making deliveries and meeting with the owners. It was a group effort.”
Speaking of attention to detail, it’s the smallest ones that make all the difference to Cabana Club and its guests.
“There are USB charging ports everywhere,” Wally laughed. “This project was different than what we’re used to doing because we had to think about families on vacation or on business trips. What would they need to make their stay more comfortable?”
So, they built everything with comfortability and relaxation in mind. They even installed oversized conduit for the existing services, just in case they wanted to add even more amenities for their guests later.
One thing that’s not small about this job, though, is the impact it’ll have on the community.
Cabana Club will attract a lot of visitors. It’s right in the middle of Orlando and Tampa, and it’s less than an hour away from Florida’s most popular attractions, like Walt Disney’s theme parks, Universal Studios, and LEGOLAND®.
“It’ll bring a lot of money into the community through visitors and tourists,” Wally said. “There’s a huge sports complex next door that hosts baseball and soccer tournaments. Most of the time, teams have to travel in from Orlando and Tampa. Now, they’ll be able to stay right next to the complex and help our community.”
If you want to stay there, you might want to go ahead and look into it now. As soon as Cabana Club partially opened after phase one, reservations filled up in one weekend.
Jeff Odum is already looking to make a quick getaway there himself.
“One of these weekends, I’ll have to rent a vacation cottage,” he said. “Maybe when the last two phases of this project are complete, we’ll all have a nice vacation.”