HOMES OF THE TREASURE COAST
The inside of the spacious house is like a museum with
commissioned carvings everywhere of Florida birds of prey,
so intricate they look like stuffed birds. Relics from the Wakemans’
travels to Africa, Central and South America have been
used as design elements in the living and family rooms.
The kitchen island has a granite countertop from Spain that
has a fossil in it that looks like an alien’s head. Melynda made
the lamp shades over the family room wet bar from cactus
shipped from the Galapagos Islands. The bar is made of coconut
shells and cinnamon wood.
Extremely dense suar wood, also known as monkeypod,
was used for the main level flooring, shelves and cabinets
and all of the heavy wooden doors. The wood from a sustainable
forest in Bali was pruned from trees that will grow back.
Rufus, who has owned the River Palm Cottages and Fish
Camp in Jensen Beach for 20 years, is also a semiretired charter
captain. He holds the record for landing a 53-pound dolphin
caught on 16-pound Tippet line in Mexico, the only one
of 10 world records he once held. In 2015, he narrowly missed
being just the third person to complete the Royal Billfish Slam
in one year, catching eight of nine species of billfish with a fly
rod in waters off Australia, Hawaii, Mexico, South America
and the Dominican Republic.
Rufus keeps his flats boat in his gated driveway, which he
calls the motor court that has room for up to 15 cars in addition
to two four-car garages. One garage has an unfinished
man cave on the second floor, he said.
The basement is an enormous 5,000-square-foot game room >>
Even from the air, it is hard
to see the property for all
of the lush landscaping.