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Thread: Sarasota / Bradenton

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Sarasota / Bradenton

    After beach hopping between Holmes/Anna Maria/ and Siesta Key yesterday, I'm overwhelming impressesed by the nice neighborhoods surrounding downtown Sarasota. I think most definitely one of the most underrated places in FL to live. I've been around most of the state and it's in par with some of the higher end zip codes ... and vast.

    As I related to Marc, yesterday I finally set foot on the famous Quartz sand of Siesta Key. It probably had the nicest facilities for a public beach I've seen, but it really didn't do anything for me.

    https://instagram.com/p/BI-smGYhoX7/

    It's a great beach for families and young people but I prefer more seclusion.

    I'm in the area for 3 more nights and Anna Maria/Holmes Beach have vindicated for me as the most idyllic beach town in the state. Will likely hit it again in the meantime.

    An hour ago we crossed the Sunshine Bridge and at the public beach at St. Pete. Around the lunch hour we'll move on over to the Undertow and start a tab.

    https://instagram.com/p/BJApurchksv/

    Great trip so far. Only snag is We weren't allowed entry at IMG Academy without an appointment. Might schedule that for early tomorrow as I'm a Tennis buff. Also allowing room for a visit to The Ringling before we leave. Looking forward to it.


    #WeLiveWhereYouVacation 🌴☀️⛱🏊🏻😎

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    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post

    As I related to Marc, yesterday I finally set foot on the famous Quartz sand of Siesta Key. It probably had the nicest facilities for a public beach I've seen, but it really didn't do anything for me.


    I'm in the area for 3 more nights and Anna Maria/Holmes Beach have vindicated for me as the most idyllic beach town in the state. Will likely hit it again in the meantime.
    Yup, Ana Maria Island is an excellent, clean, family friendly beach town with amazing sand & beautiful beaches. Lots of waterfront restaurants and its mostly empty half a year. Only negative is that there are too many weekly beach rentals and I assume this is going to get worse as AirBnb gets more popular as well as interest rates remain low for investors.

    But we loved it and definitely want to go back!

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    It was my impression again, almost all the homes there are listed as rentals. The good thing though is even the Spartan motels with beach access is just fine. The destination sells itself. We happened to stay at a friend's place just E of Gulf Dr.


    We're back home as of early morning. Dog walker was booked solid today. Great three days nonetheless. Aside all the beach hopping we did... and this is probably the only place in FL you can do that. I recommend you hit up The Ringling on your next visit in Sarasota. We all remember the circus as kids, but on this occasion I was blown away, not only of the art but this complex logistical business model. It blew my away.... along with all the circus posters and surviving relics from that period. It had a Viscaya quality to it as the John Ringling winter residence was also part of admission.

    Needless to say, I bought an extensive book about the circus posters at the gift shop and as a family, we downloaded Cecil B DeMille's Greatest Show on Earth last night. Bro, you gotta visit Ringling next time.

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    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Love it over there...I'm surprised you hadn't spent more time out that way since it's not so far from your CFl home. Did a piece on it a while ago, if you recall....

    http://www.miamibeach411.com/news/central-gulf-coast

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    I actually do but St. Pete side of Sunshine Bridge.

    Good read and yes, will be hitting that area more often.
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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post
    I actually do but St. Pete side of Sunshine Bridge.

    Good read and yes, will be hitting that area more often.
    Going back this evening. The owner of the borrowed house of a fortnight ago is still in his native Germany. The keys should be where I left them. Focusing on Bean Point and maybe a chat with the owner of perhaps the most perfectlly situated house in FL... just off BP.

    I'm stiill learing and experiencing new FL geograhpy. I still love Bradenton DT W. Tamiami (41) is a case that needs extensive help.

    Prior the my recent stay, we overnighted at the Longboat Key Hilton when in the area. driving by a new hotel is being built and the Hilton portion is razed. Also along the drive within Longboat we noticed 100's of election signs against we suppose a hotel development. proposition That notwithstanding, the epitomy of Florida Living is pretty much Long Boat Key ... amd anywhere but but Miami. After twelve years in FL mt discernibg eye doesn't lie.
    Last edited by Blackford Oakes; 08-25-2016 at 05:51 PM.
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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Didn't leave yet .... about to.

    I get the pro miami position and the built in factor from some seeking what they've been missing in current or a previous life.

    Miami is pretty easy to figure out. It took twelve years to get in tune with the whole state and I'm loving it.


    The 305 is fun and an act I've seen before. All I'm saying is, from my launch pad ... pretty close to Publix distribution point, this state is incredible and based on experience, more eccentric than Miami. Doug concurred with me. A fine fellow who perhaps shared my opinion about an average looking oriental gal gyrating while at alfreso at The Clevelandar.


    Love Miami for what it is. Conversing with an Argentine with historic ties to an estancia, and as a second born male scoffing the traditional clergy, his brother is is a banker/lawyer in Brickel. and he went diabolical. good place to do that.


    Anyway, Bean Point , here I come. l
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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Marc... Currently driving the extreme end of Anna Maria. Just as stingy as owners at South Seas on Captiva.

    Off the point, it's rental galore.

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    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Yeah Miami is actually becoming the LEAST weird part of Florida pretty quickly. Aside from the perpetual Spanish, once you accept that it's a Latin American city the "Florida Man" news always seems to come from Broward County and points north.

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Meltzer View Post
    Yeah Miami is actually becoming the LEAST weird part of Florida pretty quickly. Aside from the perpetual Spanish, once you accept that it's a Latin American city the "Florida Man" news always seems to come from Broward County and points north.
    Well in Miami you get an occasional naked dude induced on bath salts, eating a guy's face off. That's how pretty much "weird" Miami gets these days.

    It's tough enough to start a conversation in Miami ... the one's I easily get into with in the rest of the state involves great personalities with many that have lived their working life in the north. I find it more interesting to talking to someone that worked a assembly line in Michigan ( something the modern Miamian knows nothing about) than "whatever" the Miami equivilant is.

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    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post
    Well in Miami you get an occasional naked dude induced on bath salts, eating a guy's face off. That's how pretty much "weird" Miami gets these days.

    It's tough enough to start a conversation in Miami ... the one's I easily get into with in the rest of the state involves great personalities with many that have lived their working life in the north. I find it more interesting to talking to someone that worked a assembly line in Michigan ( something the modern Miamian knows nothing about) than "whatever" the Miami equivilant is.
    The bath salt guy that killed that couple was in Jupiter and he went to FSU...The other one was a few years ago around memorial day.

    I agree with Matt, most weird stuff comes from other cities in Florida (Billy Corben usually tweets something like : Wife Kills Husband for Drinking her Beer, etc) Miami just has beautiful beaches, rude people, Spanish speaking, etc.

    Regarding the conversations, I guess maybe if its someone who was born and raised in Miami isn't that interesting..but people that come from Latin America, Europe, etc. that have lived here a while usually have had a pretty cool life and my clients that relocate who aren't in their 20s, from the N.E or S. America, etc. have really cool jobs like in Tech, or free lance, or business owners, etc.

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    Senior Member FredTheCatTravels's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    We just spent a week in Sarasota and I miss those beaches!

    We always go to Crescent Beach on Siesta Key which is just like SKB but a fraction of the crowds. Even during peak season, no crowds. We also love Sand Dollar Beach closer to the Village but parking is impossible.

    Still not a huge fan of AM. Went to happy hour at The Bridge Tender but for the same vibe, I prefer Pass-A-Grille a little north. I do love that it is such a quaint little beach town.

    I think the beaches on the west coast are amazing. It's a little like the difference between a bad diamond and a good one. It's still a diamond.

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Middleton View Post
    The bath salt guy that killed that couple was in Jupiter and he went to FSU...The other one was a few years ago around memorial day.

    I agree with Matt, most weird stuff comes from other cities in Florida (Billy Corben usually tweets something like : Wife Kills Husband for Drinking her Beer, etc) Miami just has beautiful beaches, rude people, Spanish speaking, etc.

    Regarding the conversations, I guess maybe if its someone who was born and raised in Miami isn't that interesting..but people that come from Latin America, Europe, etc. that have lived here a while usually have had a pretty cool life and my clients that relocate who aren't in their 20s, from the N.E or S. America, etc. have really cool jobs like in Tech, or free lance, or business owners, etc.

    The bit I agree with is freelance. That's seems likehow the young support themselves. You have to juggle a few gigs to survive in general. Then there's old school where the great great grandkid of the Taca Airlines patriarch is enough to cover your expenses.


    Unlike a fortnight ago, this weekend I did get about Bradenton along the Tamiami and was a bit disapointed. Huge inner-city problems exist there.

    FredTheCatTravels: I'll check out Crescent Beach next time. I truly didn't care much for Siesta Key ... but I'm weird in a sense because I don't care for Miami ( South ) Beach either. Awesome public facilities as well as the surrounding neighborhoods. I'm cool with Anna Maria and Holmes Beaches. But in term of beaches, Sarasota - Bradenton and acroos the Sunshine Bridge to St. Pete lies Florida's best swath of beaches.

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    Senior Member FredTheCatTravels's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post
    FredTheCatTravels: I'll check out Crescent Beach next time. I truly didn't care much for Siesta Key ... but I'm weird in a sense because I don't care for Miami ( South ) Beach either. Awesome public facilities as well as the surrounding neighborhoods. I'm cool with Anna Maria and Holmes Beaches. But in term of beaches, Sarasota - Bradenton and acroos the Sunshine Bridge to St. Pete lies Florida's best swath of beaches.
    We LOVE Treasure Island, John's Pass, Indian Rocks, Clearwater, basically all of the beaches. My sister in law and brother in law only go to Holmes Beach or South Lido Park at the south end of Lido.

    It's really hard not to love the area.

    I agree about SB, the last time we were there it was a bit ratchet.

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by FredTheCatTravels View Post
    We LOVE Treasure Island, John's Pass, Indian Rocks, Clearwater, basically all of the beaches. My sister in law and brother in law only go to Holmes Beach or South Lido Park at the south end of Lido.

    It's really hard not to love the area.

    I agree about SB, the last time we were there it was a bit ratchet.
    Most of the beaches you mentioned are on the N side of the Sunshine Bridge. Whatever, both sides are probably where Florida's best beaches are. I'm still partial to the the N side as it's more interactive.

    While at the Circle, was pretty much told to avoid Lido. Want to hear more about that.


    In the grand scheme, I hit up many beaches in FL. I'm still disipointed Flagler totally ignored the scent of Julia Tuttle's perfume. It's whatever to me ,,,,,,, and all these other great beaches in-state !

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    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post

    In the grand scheme, I hit up many beaches in FL. I'm still disipointed Flagler totally ignored the scent of Julia Tuttle's perfume. It's whatever to me ,,,,,,, and all these other great beaches in-state !
    Only one left on my list/Dr. Beach's list is Destin. Thinking of hitting it up in December possibly when things slow down for me. Such a long drive from Miami with a toddler so we'll probably stop North of Tampa or maybe at my dad's house in the Villages.

    My dad spent time in Captiva last month and still raving about how clear and beautiful the gulf was after decades of doing gulf beaches. Maybe it was just the right time of year as we've been to Sanibel many times. Or perhaps things just fell in line for the perfect beach day.
    I remember last year when I bought my Mini in Philly and my dad & I did a rode trip home. After 2 days, we ended up at a Marriott Vacation club property in Hilton Head at 7PM and I ran to the beach and it was almost breathtaking. Sure the water isn't clear like Miami Beach or beautiful blue like Cozumel or St. Thomas, but it was clear enough, warm, calm and just perfect after a long day of driving.

    In 2 weeks we're headed to Jupiter for the weekend. The beaches of Juno Beach are nice and Palm Beach is just a tad nicer (no dogs on Palm Beach).

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    Senior Member FredTheCatTravels's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackford Oakes View Post
    Most of the beaches you mentioned are on the N side of the Sunshine Bridge. Whatever, both sides are probably where Florida's best beaches are. I'm still partial to the the N side as it's more interactive.

    While at the Circle, was pretty much told to avoid Lido. Want to hear more about that.


    In the grand scheme, I hit up many beaches in FL. I'm still disipointed Flagler totally ignored the scent of Julia Tuttle's perfume. It's whatever to me ,,,,,,, and all these other great beaches in-state !
    I LOVE Lido! South Lido Park is one of the most gorgeous beaches in Florida including Siesta. Can't imagine why anyone told you to avoid it. It used to get very redneck during the boat races but I think they've eliminated that.

    One of my most favorite beach stories ever is how Mike and I floated in the water one evening through the sunset on Longboat Key. We fixed a big rum drink and floated in those Swimway floats and just watched the sun set over the gulf. It was so amazing and beautiful!

    Marc, my friend owns the beach service on Destin and is always texting me photos. It looks gorgeous!

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by FredTheCatTravels View Post
    I LOVE Lido! South Lido Park is one of the most gorgeous beaches in Florida including Siesta. Can't imagine why anyone told you to avoid it. It used to get very redneck during the boat races but I think they've eliminated that.

    One of my most favorite beach stories ever is how Mike and I floated in the water one evening through the sunset on Longboat Key. We fixed a big rum drink and floated in those Swimway floats and just watched the sun set over the gulf. It was so amazing and beautiful!

    Marc, my friend owns the beach service on Destin and is always texting me photos. It looks gorgeous!
    Ok then, I'm going to have to hit it up. Not sure I was told to avoid it.


    Marc: Destin was one of my first excursions when I moved to FL. As for me at this point it doesn't make sense to go back. It's an 8 hr drive from Orlando. As you know, it's a resort oasis if you're from Alabama. It has a bit of cheesiness built in for that market including tons of outlets and 2nd rate amesements for kids. What I will tell you is the ocean color is truly amazing and a deep emerald. We stayed at Club Intrawest which is the San Destin community accross the main hwy from the beach...... didn't like the pressure of development while on Destin Beach. The rest of stay we went down the rode to Fort Walton. I mention that because you might want to visit the whimsical Seasidecommunity. Same devolpers as Celebration in Orlando but a totally different realm. Perhaps best real estate in the Panhandle.

    As a side note, we broke up the trip in Marianna, well past Tallahasse and set up a picnic at the Florida Caverns. It was a worthy stop but don't expect too much from the guides.

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    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Florida Caverns...I've heard a little about these but what's the deal? Seems unusual given our general lack of elevation. Was it worth a look?

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    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sarasota / Bradenton

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Meltzer View Post
    Florida Caverns...I've heard a little about these but what's the deal? Seems unusual given our general lack of elevation. Was it worth a look?
    Is that the clear, cold water that people swim/snorkel in between Gainesville and Tallahassee where its like caves? I've had lots of friends go there and rave about it.

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