Offering all of the advantages of a big city mixed with small town charm, Downtown Sarasota is a sophisticated urban area that draws arts and cultural enthusiasts from around the globe. Originally discovered by the Spanish conquistadors, Sarasota became a popular fishing and trader post before families with names like Whitaker, Webb, Palmer and Gillespie settled in the area in the mid-1800s. The Ringling family, well known as developers, circus magnates and art collectors, made Sarasota their winter retreat for decades. Today, visitors can still see the legacy that lives on from these early founders.

Throughout the year, an array of cultural amenities, dining and shopping, music venues, festivals, beautiful parks, and the allure of Sarasota Bay create an marvelous urban experience. A collection of new sophisticated, architecturally designed high-rise condominiums and hotels dot the skyline thanks to a recent urban development boom driven by demand from professionals as well as retirees.

Greater Main Street boasts downtown’s largest collection of specialty boutiques and markets as a bevy of award-winning chefs serve cuisines for every taste. From Main Street to Palm Avenue you can discover chic boutiques and art galleries, antiques, fine jewelry, pampering salons, and so much more. Downtown residents and visitors alike cherish their Saturday morning jaunt to the Farmers Market for the freshest of produce and local artist’s treasures. Neighboring districts contribute to stylish options including historic Burns Court, lively Palm Avenue, art-centered Towles Court, and the revitalized Rosemary District.

From local cafes and coffee houses to European cuisine and award-winning chefs, this walkable area offers something for everyone. For those seeking a waterfront view while dining, Marina Jack offers fine dining and casual bites, and a perfect perch to watch magnificent yachts and sailboats set sail for an evening cruise.

The Sarasota Bayfront is the epicenter of downtown Sarasota living. A peaceful walk along the waterfront is a magical journey. Sailboats moored in the bay provide the perfect backdrop for the meandering waterfront path sprinkled with inspired sculptures carefully placed to add the perfect artistic touch to the incredible sunsets.

Some of the best features of downtown living are the plethora of activities. Downtown is always bustling with festivals and events, a few of the most prominent are the: Downtown Sarasota Festival of the Arts, the Art Shows in Towles Court, Rosemary Rising Street Festival, Sarasota Chalk Festival and one of our favorites, the Sarasota Film Festival. Renowned for its arts and cultural offerings, Sarasota is reveared as the Cultural Capital of Southwest Florida, offering live performances in theater, music, ballet and the opera. The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art showcases the largest collection of Baroque art and features several international art exhibits and events each year. The historic Asolo Repertory Theatre, originally constructed near Venice, Italy, was carefully dismantled and reconstructed on the museum grounds, and hosts a variety of live performances to packed audiences. With so many options to live, work and play, Downtown Sarasota is transforming city living into a multipurpose destination.

Downtown Sarasota has the perfect blend of the peaceful waterfront lifestyle filled with manatee, osprey, pelicans and heron just steps away from the arts, restaurants, and buzz of Main Street. The real estate market in Downtown is as hot as ever, so don’t miss this opportunity to grab your slice of Downtown paradise, and enjoy this wonderfully unique lifestyle.

Downtown Districts

Burns Square
South of Main Street, Burns Square offers an interesting mix of retail shops, restaurants, salons and galleries. Historically significant, this area was developed by Owen Burns in the 1920’s.

Historic Distric
Encompassing First Street, Orange Ave, State Street, Gulfstream Ave and North Pineapple Ave, the area was recognized on the National Historic Register as of April, 2009.

Main Street
Consisting of Main Street, 1st Street, State Street and, and their surrounding areas enjoy local artisans, galleries, dining, dancing, theatre, symphony, ballet, opera, and great parks.

Palm Avenue
One of Sarasota’s most vibrant areas,  palm lined streets outline this prestigious neighborhood filled with events, shopping, and so much more.

Rosemary District
One of Sarasota’s oldest districts, located east of the Tamiami Trail and north of Fruitville. This area offers a unique bohemian attitude filled with music, dining, and festivals.

Towles Court
Located between Washington Blvd and Osprey Ave, Towles Court is known for its galleries and artisans. Home to the “Third Friday Night Walk,” explore galleries offering a wide assortment of art.