By JenMedia Campbell

If you live on the water in Riverview, or another town in Southeast Hillsborough County, chances are you’ve met Vivi Lewis, a local waterfront real estate specialist. Making friends on the waterways and reaching record success since 1989, Vivi is dubbed a waterfront expert and lives on the water herself. She is an avid boater with a passion for waterfront living, but the H2O lifestyle wasn’t necessarily easy for Vivi to attain. In short, it was hard work, integrity, and  deeprooted knowledge of the bay area that got her there.

A Tampa native and “Italian cracker,” Vivi was born and raised in historical Ybor City. Her father, having Clark Gable looks and a Ph.D. in spaghetti and meatballs, settled here from his homeland Sicily. Her mother, Minnie Lee, a spunky red-head and bonafide “Florida cracker” hailed from the strawberry patches of nearby Plant City. It was a classic time of yesteryear when families dominated Ybor street corners and started their life anew. Hard brick roads led to old-time neighborhoods where quaint little cubby-holes were proudly called home. Small on house but big on love and values, Vivi, or whom many called “Tootsie,” her childhood nickname has sweet memories of the Ybor life. In time her homegrown knowledge of the area would further bloom.

Growing up in Ybor, the waterfront certainly was no stranger. Just a mile or so from Palmetto Beach and Port of Tampa, one could find fresh hot deviled crabs, cigars, fish markets, and dockside ships resting on waterways leading to the bay. Whether or not her passion for waterfront living began here remains unknown, but soon enough Vivi would call the Alafia River home-sweet-home.

In the late eighties, after working in the accounting field for many years, Together with her husband, Jim, Vivi finally had her slice of waterfront bliss in nearby Riverview. After building a custom home and fine-tuning her boating and fishing talents, she decided to specialize in real estate where she knows best, the Tampa Bay waterways. Thus since 1989 it has been smooth sailing on the river of success.

Her professional philosophy starts with “the customer always comes first.”  Selling countless waterfront properties, Vivi has reached record success which continues to multiply like a domino effect. A sale she closes one week could very well bring her a new client the next. Over ninety percent of new business is by way of referral from satisfied clients. It is this type of advertising, true word of mouth, that speaks louder than any marketing ad.

Tampa Bay waterfront is the lifestyle of choice for many, and when a real estate move comes into play, they call the very best.

To contact Vivi, call 404-6518.

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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.