PORT CHARLOTTE'S PREMIERE FLORIST
Robert Gill opened what would become Port Charlotte Florist in 1979, after retiring with his wife Diane to Florida from New York, where they had run a successful florist and garden center. The pretext for the move may have been retirement, but Diane quickly took a job at the Punta Gorda courthouse, and Robert, bored, followed suit.
In Robert's case, it was the purchase of a mom-and-pop flower shop in Punta Gorda. A sleepy little business just across the street from the courthouse, Robert set about bringing it to life. Soon, it was a thriving operation, aptly called "Punta Gorda Flower Shop." It was so successful, in fact, that Robert opened another location across the harbor the very next year. He dubbed this one "Port Charlotte Florist."
In 1982, the Gill's bought a parcel of property along U.S. 41 near the Toledo Blade exit. It was a veritable no man's land at the time. They built the current location from the ground up, a 7,000-square-foot store that remains the one and only shop today. Now, Robert and Diane's son, Dennis Gill, and their daughter, Donna Cardenas, are at the helm, carrying Port Charlotte Florist into its second generation and beyond.