My folks were born and raised in KC and lived there until 1993, when my dad switched jobs. They lived in St. Pete's, in a nice gated community that was like 5 minutes away from the intercoastal waterways.
I visited several times a year until they left in 1998, a move which they deeply regret to this day. My Dad's office was just near the Yankees and Cardinals spring training facilities (at the time - I don't know where they spring train now) and he'd walk over on his lunch hour and watch the guys workout. He was quickly certified to dive and soon began spearfishing. He bought a jet ski early on and we'd go jet skiing in Tampa Bay, which was awesome. We could be 500 yards out and hit a sandbar! A year later, he bought a 25 foot center console fishing boat and we'd go fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. The fish, especially the red snapper, were amazing.
They had a 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom one level house with an screened in patio, a 32 foot pool and jacuzzi. They paid $178k for that place in 1993 but I don't think it's too much more to live there now. They were about 20 minutes from St. Pete's beach and the Don Caesar, which is a feature hotel. All the beaches were white sand, the water was clean and clear. In short, awesome.
One of the coolest aspects of St. Pete's were the bridges that connected it to Tampa. You could park your car and fish off the bridges on walkways constructed below the freeway/bridge. We'd grab a 5 gallon bucket of live shrimp, stick 'em on a hook and bring in everything from snapper, to amber jack to manta rays and more. It was a ton of fun.
The heat and humidity is bad in the summer, but as long as you have A/C and a pool, you'll be fine. It's far less humid in the winter, but it is still humid. I remember going there for Christmas 1995, walking out of the airport and BAM! That humidity! But, I live in a desert so I'm used to very, very dry air. They didn't feel it at all (but they do get dry when they visit Los Angeles, so go figure).
Good luck and keep us posted!