|Polo Estates was originally organized in 1955 as a limited partnership of 55 members with the purpose of starting orange groves in the rural area near the intersection of US 27 and US 192. The groves operated until major freezes in the 1980s caused many growers to move their operations further south. Other owners came up with other ideas for the land especially after the arrival of Disney in the early 1970s. The game of polo was never played at Polo Park. Instead the name “POLO” is an acronym for four counties (Polk, Osceola, Lake and Orange) whose boundaries converge at the intersection. The area is also commonly called “Four Corners” and is located on the so-called Ridge the highest land in the state.
One of the original founders of Polo Estates, Jerome Bernstein, had a vision of a community of double-wide manufactured homes in which the home owners would own not only their home but the individual property on which the home was sited. This became Polo Park West.
After a few years Polo Park East was started as a rental park in which residents owned their homes, but rented the home’s lot. In the original design PPE was intended to be a community of 750 manufactured homes. In the beginning phase of construction, a large clubhouse and pool and nine hole golf course were intended to serve all 750 homes. That plan changed when the Bernstein family decided to sell the more limited 250 home site now known as Polo Park East and develop the rest of his property separately.
Accordingly, in early 1996 David Bornstein announced to the residents of PPE that an offer had been made to purchase the land in the park. In compliance with Florida statutes he had to give the park residents the offer of first refusal. This meant that the residents had only 45 days to raise the purchase price of $2,750,000. Richard Emery, the homeowner association president engaged a management company to assist in the process of selling shares to park resident for the purpose of obtaining self-ownership. The seemingly impossible task was accomplished with acquisition being finalized on March 28, 1996. In 2000 PPE obtained 55+ certification.
Over the succeeding years Polo Park East has been transformed to its present state through the dedication of hundreds of volunteers working countless hours on projects large and small. The golf course has become one of the area’s best maintained and most popular. The lakefront has been beautified and is now the center of not only boating and fishing, but many community parties and special events. The clubhouse is the center for dozens of weekly activities and special programs. As a R.O.A. (Resident-owned Association) PPE has a nine member volunteer board of directors which oversees the park’s administration.
One of the most important special events in the history of the park was held at the clubhouse in 2009 when a party was held in observance of the retirement of the mortgage that was taken out to buy the park back in 1996.
Today Polo Park East is one of the most vibrant, attractive, and best run 55+ mobile home parks in Central Florida.