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Thread: Our recent spring break was spent on Anna Maria Island near Sarasota...It was a peaceful sunny week away from the cold St. Louis weather we left, although quite cool (mid 60's) for this time of year..

  1. #1
    bto is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Apr 2003 Saint Louis Posts: 3,460

    Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Our recent spring break was spent on Anna Maria Island near Sarasota...It was a peaceful sunny week away from the cold St. Louis weather we left, although quite cool (mid 60's) for this time of year...The last 4 days warmed up to high 70's and we enjoyed plenty of sunshine and swimming after that. Flew into Tampa and drove about an hour to the house...We rented a beautiful 3BR house that backed up to Tampa Bay between the Rod "n" Reel Pier and the Anna Maria City Pier.

    We took advantage of the cool start and made our road trips to Sarasota to the Ringling museums..For those of you who ever venture to Sarasota, the trip to this estate is well worth it...The beautiful Ringling (summer) home, situated on Sarasota Bay, has been restored and is absolutely beautiful...We took a guided tour through the house, named Ca d'Zan, and a tour through their art museum and of course, the circus museum, both sights to behold...Great history behind all of it and even the kids enjoyed it immensely.

    We also visited the Mote Marine and Aquarium which was quite fun. Visited Siesta Key Beach one day but spent most days on the lovely beaches of Anna Maria (Manatee Beach)...took bicycle rides, walks to the ice cream shop and watched lots of basketball games as the college finals were on TV while there. We happened upon the best restaurant of the trip and if you are in this area, it is a "must" -Ooh La La Bistro...very, very good food and we experienced no other like it all week...The amberjack (fish) we had for dinner was our first and it was wonderful.

    Anna Maria is a quiet little beach town but charming and friendly...no fast food places (thank goodness), just good old fashioned relaxation, which we all needed!

    Back to cold, unpredictable weather in the Lou and our regular daily grind.

    Did I mention I'd rather be in St. Barths? :)

    Bev

  2. #2

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Bev,

    We have been to Long Boat Key several times and love the area, just a short drive from Anna Maria Island. Amberjack is the best! Glad you had a good trip. We spent a few days in Jupiter over Spring Break in Jupiter!

    Steve

  3. #3
    MartinS is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2003 Snead Island, Florida. Posts: 3,108

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Sorry we missed ya,, we live on Longboat....
    Sometimes there's Justice, sometimes there's just us.

  4. #4
    bto is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Apr 2003 Saint Louis Posts: 3,460

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Martin and Janine! I just saw that you were in Sarasota...We went through Longboat several times...what a great place to live....we may be back another spring break and we'll give you advance warning next time! :) bev

  5. #5
    MartinS is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2003 Snead Island, Florida. Posts: 3,108

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure


    The island is changing from resort to condos quickly now. The Holiday Inn sold and is now condos, very few places to rent by the week anymore. Anna Maria is trying to hold on to the old island charm, but it slips every day.
    Sometimes there's Justice, sometimes there's just us.

  6. #6
    bto is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Apr 2003 Saint Louis Posts: 3,460

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Martin & Janine,

    It is a charming island...People were mostly very nice but I was amazed at the attitude of some of the people working in stores & restaurants...you could tell they had tourist burnout! We were pleasantly surprised by the one restaurant though and had a fantastic meal there...have you ever tried it? I found a site that rents private homes weekly so we jumped on it....I'd been to Sarasota but never to AMI....it seemed to have that small town feel...very nice overall except for the chilly start! I bet it's hot down there now....We loved Longboat and Siesta Key...beautiful :)

    Bev

  7. #7

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    We love AMI also! It certainly does have that old fashioned small town feel. Our favorite casual restaurant was The Beach House. Have you been there?
    Would you mind sharing the name or site for your rental? We are looking for a nice 3 bdrm to share with friends this winter.

    http://www.beachhouse-restaurant.com/

  8. #8
    bto is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Apr 2003 Saint Louis Posts: 3,460

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Maggi,

    We rented from Anna Maria Island Accommodations, Inc.
    Nice people and a decent selection of homes. We stayed in a 3 BR, Am Mer Villa, which was right on Tampa Bay but to the extreme north of the island. It took us a while to get our bearings but we loved it. Yes, we dined at Beach House but our favorite meal was at OohLaLa Bistro....great food.

    I think the site was www.annamariaparadise.com

    Susan was the rep's name.
    Let me know if I can help further.

    bev

  9. #9

    Re: Anna Maria Island Adventure

    Got it! Looks like a good site and a great house. Thanks so much, Maggi

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