Woman of Influence: Torrie Jasuwan

Philanthropy, real estate dealings and hotel development with a side of reality show stardom: When it comes to well-rounded influence, Torrie Jasuwan looks to cover every square inch.

The St. Petersburg resident kicked 2020 off by lobbying for Senate Bill 54 in Tallahassee on behalf of Baby2Baby, the National Diaper Bank Network, and her own nonprofit organization, Babycycle Diaper Bank. After that was a March opening of Two Mermaids Resort, a boutique Treasure Island getaway billed as laid-back vintage.

In addition to Jasuwan’s civic and hotelier duties, she works as a real estate broker at Luxe Properties International. And if the names Torrie, Albert, Tiernan and Pearson sound familiar, you might be a Bravo-TV viewer: the Jasuwan family has appeared on the reality show Below Deck twice to date, complete with their two small children.

It’s safe to say that in the world of Jasuwan, there’s rarely a dull moment. A few of her recent highlights:

Luxe Properties International

Jasuwan points to her roots as a reason for her success as a real estate broker. The St. Petersburg native knows the area inside and out, she says, and that makes it easier for her to match the right listings with her clients’ needs and wants.

“As a broker-owner at Luxe Properties International, I have recently been focusing on many motel and hotel acquisitions, and sales, as well as large commercial deals and luxury home sales,” Jasuwan says.

That’s a tease toward her next venture – a revamped hotel with plenty of coastal flair.

Fame Below Deck

Search the internet for the Bravo-TV series Below Deck, a show that highlights the cast, crew and passenger experience of luxury yachting, and you’ll see multiple posts naming the Jasuwans. They’re featured in four episodes, throughout two seasons, and are widely regarded as favorites.

The Jasuwans are the only people, to date, who have brought their children with them on the voyage. It didn’t occur to Jasuwan to leave them at home; the family has taken Tiernan and Pearson all over the world.

“It’s such a unique experience,” Jasuwan says. “I knew the kids would do great because they’re used to traveling.”

Are more reality show stints in the Jasuwan future? Perhaps. In the Jasuwan world, anything seems possible.

Diapers: A Dedication to the Cause

Jasuwan stands among boxes and boxes of donated diapers inside Babycycle’s office in Pinellas Park and surveys the situation. It’s a small victory, this sanitary stash, but a victory nonetheless: These diapers represent Babycycle’s commitment to improving conditions for babies and children in need. The organization’s goal is for no child through age 12 to go without basic necessities. Too often, Jasuwan says, that necessity is a clean diaper.

“We’re going on seven years serving children in the Tampa Bay area,” she says. “It’s a necessary journey; when there’s not enough money to keep a child in a clean diaper, both child and parent suffer.”

Children and babies kept too long in soiled diapers often experience rashes and malaise; the guilt of not being able to provide regular diapers changes for a child can lead to parent depression. It’s a vicious cycle, Jasuwan says, and it’s one that Babycycle looks to break. Diapers are a main organization focus; so, too are wipes, clean clothing, food and other necessities.

And Jasuwan is not stopping with the Tampa Bay community. Remember the lobbying in Tallahassee? It’s high time the tax on diapers be eliminated, Jasuwan says. Should the legislation be approved, it will take effect Jan. 1, 2021.

To donate diapers, volunteer or discover more information about Babycycle, visit babycyclefl.org.

A room at the Two Mermaids Resort

Two Mermaids Resort

Inside the guest room, a pillow decorating the bed reads “Paradise: A place of great beauty or happiness; a state of delight.” The wallpaper showcases pastel mermaids and jellyfish; the floors are a rustic gray and white blend. Every detail of the Two Mermaids Resort at 10200 Gulf Blvd. is designed to help guests relax and enjoy the beachside escape.

Jasuwan, and business partner Jeanette Secor oversaw the property’s remodeling and rebranding, taking the former Beachside Palms location and giving it much more than just a new coat of paint. They’ve crafted inviting décor, redesigned and furnished rooms and hope customers see the value in packages such as “Keep it Local,” which includes a one-night stay and a $100 gift card to a favorite restaurant.

This isn’t some side hustle without vision: The “two mermaids” have big plans.

“We’re looking to attract guests worldwide,” Jasuwan says. “By transforming an aging beach hotel into a boutique destination, we’re changing the landscape of Treasure Island.”

She and Secor see endless possibilities in Two Mermaids. The Treasure Island property is billed as a sandy mecca that attracts tourists and unites locals. Long before the first guest arrival, Two Mermaids Resort has hosted Champagne yoga, family movie nights and more.

“With the hotel, we’re looking to create a concept of community—something new and different that will attract everyone from millennials to families to retirees,” Jasuwan says. ♦


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