Commissioners question Brevard Co. nudist resort

Cocoa Beach leaders discuss resort's new 'philosophy'

COCOA BEACH, Fla. – Cocoa Beach city leaders question a motel's decision to become a nudist resort.

Fawlty Towers Motel became a nudist resort on May 1. The motel's owner says he made the change to attract more tourists to his business because he said his business has been struggling for years.

"It's just a niche in the market," owner Paul Hodge said. "There's no competition in 100 miles."

Many Cocoa Beach residents who attended the city council meeting were worried about the city gaining a bad reputation.

"Instead of a beach town, don't want to be this honky tonky, sleaze town," said Eileen Callan.

At the meeting Thursday, commissioners passed a motion directing the city attorney to research the different rules the motel would have to follow. They also asked the city attorney to come back with ideas to prevent another similar motel from opening in the future.

Hodge told Local 6 weekend bookings began to fill up quickly once he made the announcement.

"It's really looking good and turning around," Hodge said. "It's great we're fully booked for the weekend, we've only got one room left."

Tony Perrera, a cab driver in Cocoa Beach, says some of his customers are upset because the resort is three doors down from Shepark Park, which is filled with children during the summer.

"Is this the right thing to do? No, not there," said Perrera.

But some businesses near the motel hope business will boom with the change.

"If he does more business its going to help me," said Ron Abeles, owner of I Dream of Yogurt.

Some businesses are confident they will see a boost in sales.

"I hope it boosts business for us and I think it will," said Ashley Fulkerson, manager at Flirt.

Watch Local 6 for more on this story.