Dining & Shopping
On St. Armands Circle, you’ll find sophisticated shopping and trendy outdoor cafes near beaches, resembling a European-style walking street. St. Armands was originally developed by circus magnate John Ringling in 1926, envisioning a luxury development and upscale shopping. Now one of the premiere destinations in Sarasota, his dream is going strong to this day. Elegant boutiques, fine dining, and ice cream shops go handin-hand with excellent people-watching and the sound of multiple languages as tourists visit from abroad. With Lido Beach just a seashell’s throw away, a visit to St. Armands is the perfect cap to a day of lounging by the waves and soaking in the sun.
Shore restaurant is one of the hottest places for eating out. Offering cool vibes and delicious eats, Shore has two locations – one on St. Armands and the other on north Longboat Key. Inspired recipes and signature cocktails mingle with a mid-century, alfresco décor. The waterfront location on Longboat Key welcomes diners by land or by sea – set on a picturesque marina. Shore St. Armands offers diners an open-air setting to go along with its delicious Key West shrimp and scallop risotto.
Located at I-75 and University Parkway, University Town Center (UTC) is home to more than 250 retail shops and 80 restaurants. This is surely a one-stop shop for anything you can imagine. The centerpiece of the UTC area is the Mall at University Town Center, which includes Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, Dillard’s, Lululemon, Apple, Tesla, and much more. Additional shopping centers include The District East and The District West as well as The Shoppes at University Town Center. UTC is expanding even further with new office space, an entertainment center, hotels, and upscale apartments. UTC also borders Nathan Benderson Park, home to the 2017 World Rowing Championships.
For those who love Italian food and modern vibes, Mediterraneo is a staple of fine dining in downtown Sarasota. Run by Italian owners, Mediterraneo offers artisanal and contemporary Northern Italian-style cuisine and has been rated one of the top restaurants in Florida’s Zagat Survey. The chic atmosphere combines with genuine hospitality; diners will feel like they are having lunch in Firenze or dinner in Milano. You’ll savor the fresh seafood, veal, pasta dishes and thin crust, wood fired pizza.