“ We were always impressed with the amenities and, as longtime boaters, appreciated the marina and enjoyed dining at the Red Dog Grill. Over the years, we made a lot of friends at Heritage Harbor.”

Pamela Beckett, the recently retired CEO of the Starved Rock Country Community Foundation, and her husband Chuck have been Ottawa residents since 2005. For 15 years they watched the area grow, flourish and were excited to see Heritage Harbor Resort and the marina come to fruition.  

“Through my work at the foundation, we had come to know the people and attend events at Heritage Harbor,” Pamela said. “We were always impressed with the amenities and, as longtime boaters, appreciated the marina and enjoyed dining at the Red Dog Grill. Over the years, we made a lot of friends at Heritage Harbor. I became a member of their book club and Chuck helps on the grill at the Tiki Bar over the summer.”

Just 90 minutes from Chicago in Ottawa’s Starved Rock Country, Heritage Harbor Resort is situated along the Illinois River and features a state-of-the-art 152-slip marina as well as several distinct neighborhoods, including villas, cottages, low-maintenance single-family homes and luxury, custom residences.  The community also features the Red Dog Grill Restaurant, Tiki bar and beach as well numerous neighborhood clubhouses and swimming pools. 


“We weren’t looking to buy an investment home at Heritage Harbor but happened to be in the right place at the right time,” Pamela said. “We’d come to help distribute candy at the Easter parade and Tammy Barry wanted to show us a home at Heritage Harbor. It was too big for us, we have a large single-family home in Ottawa, so I asked if she had one of the cottages available. And, as luck would have it, the most popular cottage at the community happened to be for sale.”

The Beckett’s purchased a one-bedroom cottage with a loft and saw an immediate return on their investment.

“Within the first three weeks after our purchase we saw the home’s appraised value increase by $51,000,” Pamela said. “We closed in April and it’s been rented ever since. Heritage Harbor offers a turnkey rental program where they book reservations as well as handle the cleaning and maintenance. It’s nice to know that if a renter needs something in the middle of the night we are not on call. Heritage Harbor handles it.”

Buyers interested in investing in a home at Heritage Harbor can choose from a diverse selection of housing options, including low-maintenance homes in the new Boat House neighborhood. Priced from the $309,000 to $395,000, these homes range from 975 to 1,700 square feet in size with the option to add a finished walkout lower level that adds 975 square feet to the ranch plan and 850 square feet to the two-story..

Ranch-style homes are also available in the new Port Place neighborhood. These custom-built homes range from 1,100 to over 2,000 square feet with two-car garages and optional basements. Homes will surround a common gathering area, which will include a fire pit, benches and strands of overhead lights.

Buyers may also choose from single-family ranch, two-story and first-floor master bedroom cottages in the established West Peninsula neighborhood ranging from 1,490 to over 2,290 square feet in size with two to four bedrooms, two to four baths, charming front porches, guest suites, second floor bunk rooms, optional basements and attached or detached garages. Pinnacle Pointe, a newly introduced waterfront neighborhood with its own pool and clubhouse, offers luxury ranch and two-story designs priced from the $550s to over $1 million or buyers may choose to purchase a homesites and use their own builder. Homes range from 1,705 to over 3,512 square feet in size with three or four bedrooms, two to 3 ½ baths and two-car garages. Homes may include open concept kitchen and family rooms, screened porches, finished walkout basements, guest suites and decks.

“As an owner, we get to enjoy all of the amenities and events at Heritage Harbor,” Pamela said. “We’ve made some terrific friends and are onsite all the time enjoying everything the community has to offer. This spring, we’re planning to join the boat club so we can full advantage of the marina and river.”

Historic downtown Ottawa features a selection of palate-pleasing restaurants, shops, boutiques and hosts a weekly Farmer’s Market in Washington Square through October as well as Redick Mansion candlelight holiday tours and the Chris Kringle Market. The community is less than 15 minutes from 2,630-acre Starved Rock State Park, known for its steep sandstone canyons and waterfalls

In addition to all there is to do in the area, Heritage Harbor is across the street from the 96-mile I & M Canal Biking trail and includes several community pools and parks, including the River Run Dog Park. The on-site activity director also plans year-round activities for residents and guests to enjoy, such as live music on weekends, special neighborhood events and holiday gatherings as well as craft and cooking classes, organized group tours, and the weekly, Saturday 5K walk and run.

“We would never have considered a rental investment anywhere else,” Pamela said. “The overall community personality and amenities at Heritage Harbor as well as its future growth made us want to invest and we haven’t looked back.”


Interested homebuyers can learn more through the ‘Live Like a Homeowner’ Discovery Package currently available at Heritage Harbor.  The package includes a two-night stay for two adults and two children under 21 in a cottage, $50 gift card for the Red Dog Grill, private tour and customized Starved Rock experience for $249.   

Heritage Harbor is located at 111 Harbor View Drive in Ottawa. Please call (815) 433-5000 Ext. 1 to preschedule a one-on-one appointment or email tammyb@heritageharborottawa.com. Enjoy a virtual drive-through of the community by visiting  www.visitheritageharbor.com

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