Florida Guide > Places to Visit
Visit St Armands Circle Sarasota
We have on several occasions when we visited the Gulf Coast had a couple of nights stay in a small motel at Siesta Key in Sarasota. This really is a relaxing part of Sarasota away from the bustle of the town itself.
Whist we are there we usually visit St Armand' s Circle for our shopping fix! To get there from the I-75 you take Sarasota (exit 39), then West on State Road 780 to St. Armands Key. Take the Ringling Causeway over Sarasota Bay to St. Armand’s Circle. From US 41 you go West on State Road 780 to St. Armand’s Key. Take the Ringling Causeway over Sarasota Bay to St. Armand’s Circle.
Here these days you will find visitors from all over the United States as well as from overseas but just over a hundred years ago it was just a mangrove island! Mind you Sarasota itself was just a small fishing village.
John Ringling famous for his circus empire planned the original development of St Armand’s Circle and I believe was responsible for building the bridge to the Island. After initial success it lay fairly dormant until the 1940s when a few investors opened restaurants and in the 50s stores began to open.
Today St. Armands has a fabulous selection of shops and it is well worth spending an afternoon browsing here. There are many fashion outlets here from boutiques to swimwear to casual clothing.
You will enjoy the many gift type shops which sell so many unusual gifts. My Mother always spends quite some time in The Rosemary Rabbit Home Collection while my Father usually visits some of the several galleries on site. If you have children with you that have an urgent need for an ice cream there are several places to buy these including Ben and Jerrys.
We usually pay an afternoon visit to St Armands and either have lunch before shopping or dinner afterwards as there are plenty of good restaurants here, our favourite is Hemmingways. They have a lovely lunchtime menu do try either their Caribbean Cheesecake sandwich which is a mouth watering steak in a pannini or the Crab Cake sandwich both are delicious.
Their Happy Hour is 2. 00 to 7. 00pm but you have to sit at the bar for this and they have an Early Bird Special 4 to 5. 30pm with some great meals on and if you want a leisurely evening meal try their dinner menu.
St Armand’s Circle is well worth a visit
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