John Hussey Featured in Orlando Style Magazine | Orlando Power Couples
By Heather Rybka
Married: 20 years
Met: At The Village Tavern in Longrove, Illinois
Motto: “Chart your course”
Power Bar: Redeveloping and revitalizing our cities
In 1987, a Chicago wind blew into town, bringing Holly and John Hussey to stay. A chic couple who are as passionate about their family as they are about their goals, the Hussey’s turned their passion to downtown Orlando.
The Husseys were forerunners of downtown’s redevelopment efforts – buying and restoring historic buildings in its core while others were slapping up suburbs. Working as a team, Holly’s artistic eye will spot a gem in a need of polishing. John brokers the deal, then together they give it new life often building up the surrounding area in the process.
The Angebilt, ABC and Central Arcade buildings are a few of John and Holly’s pet projects. Holly does the interior design- playing up the unique architectural elements while remodeling inside and out. Her most recent jewel is the lobby of the Angebilt on Orange Avenue, which included designing and commissioning elaborate, wrought-iron chandeliers to echo the buildings early 20th century architecture.
“Holly has the vision,” says John, clearly smitten with his wife of twenty years. “She’s always the one who sees it before anyone else.”
“We complement each other,” counters Holly. “He’s 100% left brain, and I’m 100% right brain.”
Holly grew up in an artistic family, filed with art and music. John’s from a working class family with ten kids- three of whom were adopted. Holly studied at the Art institute of Chicago; John studied finance at Eastern Illinois. Together, they’ve used their ying and yang to raise three beautiful children while building a legacy through the redevelopment of tired worn areas. Their company, RealTrend Inc., is branching out to Winter Garden and Nashville with an eye on the international market. The Garden Plaza in Winter Garden is their next project, and will feature a hotel, office, condo, and retail space and the first outdoor conference area of its kind.
They attribute their success to two things; being passionate and goal-oriented. “You have to set goals, chart your course together,” says John. “You can’t sail the boat if you don’t know where you’re going. That goes for family, marriage, and business.”
Holly lights up when the subject of passion arises. “All couples should be passionate about what they believe, each other, how you feel… And that’s what we teach our children. We want them to see us have emotion and to learn to set goals.”
One of Holly’s and John’s goals from the day they married was to work with kids, a goal achieved through their charitable work with Edgewood Children’s Ranch where John is Chairman of the Board. “This organization is incredible. We’re reuniting families and helping kids redevelop themselves,” John says proudly.
“But it’s not about what we give to those kids…it’s about what they give us. That’s the real reward,” says Holly.
“We also love adventure,” she continues, her green eyes sparkling. We’re always looking for a new adventure to keep our marriage exciting and to bring to our kids. And we love sharing our adventures with other people.”
One person they shared an adventure with was John’s grade school buddy, Cameron Kuhn. Their passion for Orlando’s potential convinced Cameron to relocate here, and, as they say, the rest is history.
With passion, clear goals, and sense of adventure, Holly and John Hussey have brought Orlando into the future, with a wink and a nod to its wonderful past.