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Florida's Cultural Coast collage

See Why Sarasota Has Become Florida’s Cultural Coast

November 8, 2023 | Read Time: 4 minutes

Located just south of Tampa on Florida’s west coast lives a vibrant community that cherishes its arts and cultural scene and celebrates creativity and a shared sense of community. Sarasota, also known as Florida’s “Cultural Coast” is known for its galleries, venues, and museums full of lively art and cultural experiences year-round. No matter the season, there is enrichment around every corner. Let’s explore some of Sarasota’s most popular venues and experiences, all within a short stroll from Peninsula Sarasota.

aerial of the van wezel on Florida's Cultural Coast

Waterfront Performance Art

Opened in 1970, The Van Wezel is a Bayfront landmark curiously coined the “Crown Jewel of Sarasota Bay.” Striving to meet diverse cultural needs of Southwest Florida’s residents and visitors, the Performing Arts Center presents over 100 performances per season including Broadway musicals, international performers, comedians, dance, and more! The Van Wezel has been a long-standing pillar of the arts and culture community of Sarasota, and its education program brings visiting artists into the community for outreach activities, teaching students “through, in, and about” the arts.

Opera Performances Rooted in Creative Excellence

Celebrating its 64th season, the historic Sarasota Opera House has been named “one of the finest venues for opera in the United States” by Musical America. Located in the heart of downtown Sarasota, this 1,100 seat theater aims to educate and inspire a life-long love of opera and honor artists through presentations of opera, symphony, and ballet. During the Fall and Winter seasons, enjoy a tour of the Opera House on Mondays at 10:30am.

art performances on Florida's Cultural Coast

The Artistic Joy of the Circus

The art of performance was long a part of John Ringling’s life – traveling on the road with his four brothers from a young age for their circus show. Beautifully curated by John and his wife, Mable, the John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art is one of the leading art and cultural collections in the United States featuring John’s collection of over 600 works dedicated to preserving circus history. In addition to the museum, The Ringling Estate has 66 acres to explore including the Historic Asolo Theater for performance art, the state-of-the-art Johnson Education Center, and the Bayfront Gardens.

florida's cultural coast art galleries

Showcasing Local Artists and Galleries

Palm Avenue is an animated stretch in the Bayfront Park area home to numerous fine art galleries as well as excellent dining, shopping, and live performances. On the first Friday of every month, Gallery Row hosts First Friday Gallery Walk where residents and guests are invited to explore Sarasota’s diverse art scene on Palm Avenue. Some highlights include local Sarasota abstract artist Meg Krakowiak’s Art Gallery and Studio featuring contemporary fine art, Palm Avenue Fine Art showcasing both established and emerging artists, and Dabbert Gallery’s original paintings and sculpture.

Florida's Cultural Coast urban landscape

Transforming the Urban Landscape with Art

Also in the Bayfront area, the Rosemary Art & Design District (RADD) is a bustling creative scene that began as a vision of local change-making foundation DreamLarge. Aiming to further the community with enriching artisan works, it has become renowned as the art and design district of Sarasota with year-round exhibits and events. There are striking urban murals seemingly around every corner by artists telling the story of the Sarasota community through art expression. Private mural tours are offered by foot or trolley for a fully immersive and educative experience. RADD also hosts numerous events throughout the year, including networking sessions held every second Tuesday of the month, a running club, bike rides, and other celebrations.

Artist Rendering Of Peninsula At Dusk

Boutique Sarasota Condos Now Under Construction

Sarasota’s thriving arts and culture scene has made it a global attraction, establishing the region as the focal point for a new era of luxurious living. Yet many high-profile buildings planned for the city have stalled due to complications in the permitting process. Just a short stroll away from Downtown Sarasota on Golden Gate Point, Peninsula Sarasota has already begun vertical construction, giving its future residents peace of mind on its delivery schedule.

Anticipated for delivery by the end of 2024, the boutique condominium community is rapidly approaching sellout, with only six residences still available. The two buildings feature just one or two residences per floor, with open-concept floorplans, 10-foot floor-to-ceiling windows, and spa-inspired color palettes that convey a soothing sense of relaxation. Resort-style amenities instill a feeling of exclusivity, including a resort-style pool with a sundeck and a state-of-the-art Fitness Center with the latest high-tech cardio and strength equipment. A Rooftop Residents’ Lounge features glass railings, fire pits, and plentiful seating areas to enjoy expansive, unobstructed views of Sarasota Bay.

Priced from $3.7 million, Peninsula Sarasota is experiencing high demand for its centrally located yet secluded lifestyle. For more information and to preview available floorplans, Peninsula Sarasota’s Sales Gallery is now open daily at 1300 Main Street. Visit PeninsulaSarasota.com or call 941-655-9669 to schedule your Virtual Experience tour today.

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