Florida Guide > Shopping
Ellenton Prime Shopping Outlets
If you are travelling to the Gulf Coast beaches or just fancy a break from Disney and a day out for some retail therapy Ellenton Prime Outlets is well worth a visit.
The Outlets are situated just off I-75 at Exit 224 (old exit 43) between Tampa and Sarasota. They are 10 minutes from Bradenton, 20 minutes from Sarasota, 25 minutes from St Petersburg and 30 minutes from Tampa:
5461 Factory Shops Boulevard, Ellenton, Florida. Telephone 941 723 1150.
Opening hours are usually Monday to Friday 10.00am – 9.00pm and Sunday 11.00am – 6.00pm. For those used to the busier Outlet Centres like Premium Outlets in Orlando this is a much more tranquil experience with just as many bargains and the stores often have different stock from the Orlando ones.
The shops are designed in Caribbean village-style architecture and the tropical landscaping provides plenty of seating areas – we usually deposit Granddad in various seats around the outlets! However Strollers and wheelchairs are available for hire for those less able.
AAA cardholders qualify for discounts in various stores and it is always worth enquiring at the Visitor Information Centre (which is situated by the VF Factory Outlet) for discount books. Another useful source of discount vouchers are the on-site guides provided detailing all the shops, these usually offer 10% discounts at various stores. Over 50’s qualify for extra discounts at Osh Gosh on certain days of the week.
As we usually travel from Orlando the children are usually hungry on arrival so our first stop is the Food Court. As ever spoilt for choice everyone wants something different and amongst our favourites are Burger Works/ Lozano’s Mexican Express/New Orleans Grill and the Wok Master, the latter selling a good selection of reasonably priced Chinese that we have come to expect in Florida.
After we have eaten Granddad usually takes our younger girl to play in the Children’s play area whilst the rest of us head to Saks Off Fifth Avenue where we have bought many bargains over the years. Designer sunglasses especially can be cheaper than many other places in Florida. The ladies then proceed to a large Liz Claiborne next to Saks. My Aunt is a great fan of Kasper suits for work and not only are they a fraction of the price in the UK but there are nearly always discount vouchers of at least 10% that can be used with your purchase.
For ladies interested in shoes there are many outlets including Liz Claiborne (this is separate from their main store) and Nine West, prices here are always half the price in the UK and their special offers and sale items offer even more savings.
The men like to visit the usual stores that fascinate them in Florida – Ralph Lauren/Nike/DKNY/Nautica/ Reebok and Rockport.
In total there are over 200 stores at Ellenton, everything from housewares, luggage, shoes, health/beauty and clothes. In addition to those already mentioned there is Gap, Tommy Hilfiger, Versace, Quiksilver, Coach, Samsonite to name but a few.
Well worth a visit for a less crowded shopping experience whilst getting some great bargains.
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Page added on: 19 April 2005
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The following photos have been submitted by our villa owners for this article.