social distance sign on floor of hotel
Social distancing reminder in the lobby of the Westin Sarasota

What It's Like to Visit Sarasota County Right Now

See what some of the new protocols added during the pandemic look like at hotels, restaurants and attractions around Sarasota County

September 3, 2020

Welcome back to Sarasota County! Wherever you’re from, we’re sure you deserve a stress-free break from the real world, and it sure helps to pick a destination making every effort to help you vacation responsibly.

Whether you’re visiting for the first time or returning for more coastal R&R, things might look a little different than you remember from your last beach vacation. To help you prepare, check out the galleries below to see what the visitor experience looks like now that our tourism partners are ready to welcome you back to the area.

All of these businesses are currently participating in Sarasota Big Pass—two months of destination-wide deals in August and September. Local businesses are offering buy-one-get-one (BOGO), 25% off or $5 off any goods and services when you mention Sarasota Big Pass. Click here to see the deals!

Hotels

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Hampton Inn & Suites Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch

Located off I-75 six miles from the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport is the Hampton Inn & Suites Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch. The hotel is conveniently situated in the Lakewood Ranch area, surrounded by shops and restaurants within walking distance and across from The Mall at University Town Center. Nathan Benderson Park is also a short distance away and offers kayak and paddleboard rentals.

The Westin Sarasota

Standing 18 stories tall, The Westin Sarasota offers breathtaking views of Sarasota Bay and 255 beautifully appointed guest rooms and suites. Located in Sarasota's vibrant arts district, our hotel puts guests in close proximity of the city's best theater, arts and beaches.

Homewood Suites by Hilton Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch

Located off I-75 six miles from the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport is the Homewood Suites Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch. The hotel is conveniently situated in the Lakewood Ranch area, surrounded by shops and restaurants within walking distance and across from The Mall at University Town Center. Nathan Benderson Park is also a short distance away and offers kayak and paddleboard rentals.

Courtyard by Marriott Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch

Courtyard by Marriott offers all suite accommodations, ideal for both work & play. Located walking distance to the Mall at UTC, over 50 restaurants, and Nathan Benderson Park. Just minutes from Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport, Lakewood Ranch Premier Sports Campus, Sarasota Polo Club, white sandy gulf beaches and golf. Fresh, cooked to order Seasonal Food and Cocktails are available in The Bistro.

Restaurants

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Circo

Circo is a spot for rare and/or interesting bourbons and mezcals, fun cocktails and classic margaritas. Born from the marriage of two deeply interconnected cultures; Mexican & American, taco slinging & craftsmanship is what this joint does best. 

Libby’s Neighborhood Brasserie

The goal of Libby's Neighborhood Brasserie has always been a neighborhood friendly and inviting space you can gather with friends and family. Offering a varied menu of Classic American Cuisine with a twist, Libby's showcases an eclectic array of seasonally available produce and products. Small plates to full-dinner options allow diners a variety of delicious choices and even better price points. Libby's is also the spot to find sophisticated wine and cocktail offerings.

Attractions

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Marie Selby Botanical Gardens

Selby Gardens is a living museum perhaps best known for its collection of more than 6,000 orchids. The downtown Sarasota campus offers breathtaking views of Sarasota Bay just a few minutes from Siesta Key. Located just south of Sarasota in Osprey, Selby’s Historic Spanish Point campus is a family friendly living history museum on a 30-acre historical, archaeological and environmental site on Little Sarasota Bay.

Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary

Big Cat Habitat & Gulf Coast Sanctuary is a non-profit safe haven for all animals in need. The mission is to educate the public about current animal issues, foster appreciation and to stress the importance of habitat preservation. Experience a family friendly, up close adventure of the exotic kind!

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