Windermere is a white-collar enclave filled with professionals. Two-thirds of the residents hold a BA or better. Children thrive here, thanks to their numbers and the social interconnections that develop with families in which education and accomplishment are respected. Based on state-sponsored testing, the town's schools rated nine out of a possible 10. Single-family homes are commonplace, leading to stable neighborhoods. Telecommuting makes many parents available throughout the day. The town's ambience is quiet. Local tours and expeditions focus on a bald eagle swooping down to grab a fish, an egret striding the water and a little bass fishing. Other wildlife skirts the waters by the finest homes of the rich and famous. For the more active, water skiing and the Windermere Country Club golf course are available.

Windermere, Florida, is a small town in Orange County, the home of Disneyworld. With the motto "among the lakes," it is no surprise that it boasts an array of housing designed for those whose lifestyle demands access to or a scenic look at a watery environment. Listings run to the high end and regularly rank with America's most expensive. An 8-bedroom lakeside home with arches and travertine floors is not an unusual offering. It is a good time to buy in the area, as home price values continue to increase-better than 14 percent in recent years.

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