Craig Wheeler

What is your professional role?

Provide oversight for business plan development and guidance for all sales and marketing activities for our developer and financial partners for developments and communities we manage.  Oversight for all business plans being managed for each project managed along with the President of Destination Living.  Balance day to day of these activities while working with developers and financial partners on their future inventory and development plans to stay ahead of any trends or changes in the marketplace to ensure their ability to lead ahead of the curve.    

What are some of your professional achievements?

Taken over and turned around multiple developments including:

  • Taberna (Developer: Weyerhaeuser, New Bern, NC) doubled sales in the first year in 1999.  The community is sold out today and built out
  • Cypress Landing (Developer: Weyerhaeuser, Washington, NC) Doubles sales in the first year in 1998.  The community sold out today and built out
  • Haig Point (Developer: International Paper, Hilton Head, SC) Took over in 1998 from the developer after they had 8 sales in the previous three years.  Sold final 350 homesites over next three years.  The community sold out today and built out.
  • Reunion Resort and Club (Developer: Ginn Company, Orlando, Fl.) Started from inception.  Envisioned community for the developer, branded, sold out $800,000,000 from 2001 to 2007.  Thriving resort today with three golf courses, hospitality, restaurants, etc.
  • Hammock Beach Resort (Developer: Ginn Company, Palm Coast, Fl.)  Began oversight of community / developer sales program in 2000 for the developer.  Branded resort and sold out $350,000,000 from 2000 to  2006.  Thriving Oceanfront resort today with a golf course, hospitality, restaurants, etc.
  • Bella Collina (Developer: Ginn Company, Orlando, Fl.) Started from inception.  Envisioned community for developer, branded, sold out $500,000,000 from 2003 to  2007.  Thriving high-end private club today with Nick Faldo golf course, wedding venue, restaurants, etc.
  • Launched the first Tiger Woods Golf Course in North America for Cliffs at High Carolina in 2009.
  • Listed and sold over 10,000 properties for over $5 Billion since 1993.
  • Earned the trust and recognition of being known as one of the top minds in the industry for branding, marketing, and sales operations for master-planned communities in the US.

What are some of your professional passions and values?

  • Discovering and developing great new sales and marketing talents for our industry.  While most people try to poach talent from other companies in most businesses, one of the things I enjoy the most is looking for young professionals with a passion for success and taking the time to train and develop talent for our industry.
  • I love taking over projects that are stuck or in a “broken” situation and figuring out how to turn them around. 
  • Taking projects that the industry says are “impossible” and creating winning situations (Summerhouse in 2015)
  • Winning!
craig wheeler copy

Where can you find me when I’m not working?

One of three places:

  • My wife and I have two daughters, Kristen (26, married second-grade teacher) and Kaitlyn (23, Nurse).  Both live in Raleigh and we love hanging out with them.
  • On my boat “Destination Reelty.”  I  Will literally go to the dock and just sit on my boat, get online, and make it my second office.  It’s where I can escape.
  • I Have been coaching high school basketball at Coastal Christian HS since 2007.  I started the program as the head coach in 2007 through 2019.  In 2020, I flipped roles with George Greene (one of my best friends) who was my assistant coach.  He is now the head coach and I am his assistant coach.  This is where I can unplug from work, be competitive, and give back.  In 1993 when I first got into this business, I was fortunate enough that the developer at St. James Plantation hired former Washington Redskins running back Jeff Davis as the President of Sales and Marketing and he decided to mentor me.  Without him taking the time to mentor and teach me not only lessons from our industry but also pure leadership qualities, I would not be here today.  Therefore, this is where I can pass the same lessons forward.   

What is your favorite Hobby?

  • Boating
  • Duke Basketball
  • High School Basketball
  • Golf

What is your favorite Team?

  • Coastal Christian High School
  • Duke
  • Dallas Cowboys

What is your favorite food/restaurant?

Fresh Sushi

What is your favorite thing about the Wilmington area?

Pulling up to ICW Restaurants on Boat or just dropping anchor w Friends and Family

A little-known fact/”something you wouldn’t know about me”

I played in golf tournament with Michael Waltrip in 2006.  After much trash talking, we played the 17th hole with loser having to caddy for the other golfer.  Michael Waltrip was a great sport as he carried my bag up the 18th hole.  Very classy guy and great trash talker.