The Mall at UTC is one of the great places to shop in Sarasota County

Shop Sarasota County's Mall Scene

Sarasota County's mall shopping scene is endless. From major shopping destinations such as The Mall at University Town Center and Westfield Sarasota Square, to the boutique shops of Southgate Mal, enjoy an overview of the Sarasota County mall scene.

One could spend days, weeks -- even months -- making the journey through Sarasota's endless array of shops, boutiques and department stores. Lucky for you, we've simplified the process and selected five shopping venues that include Sarasota's newest mall, two staple malls, one outlet mall and a shopping plaza.

The new kid on the block

Brace yourself for a world-class fashion-and-dining destination that has taken Sarasota County by storm. The Mall at University Town Center, located on east University Boulevard near I-75, opened its doors October 2014. The 880,000-square foot, two-level shopping center features more than 100 fashion-and-lifestyle retailers and restaurants where you can shop, eat, drink and be merry!

The mall features three two-level anchor stores: Saks Fifth Avenue, which occupies 80,000-square-feet; Macy's, 160,000-square-feet; and Dillard's, 180,000-square-feet. Retailers such as Anthropologie, H&M, Lilly Pulitzer, and Lululemon Athletica have also taken up shop in the beautiful University Town Center, as well a chic Apple store.

For the beauty addicts, there's Aveda, Bath & Body Works, Brow Art, Diventi Bella, Kiehl's, L'Occitane, LUSH Fresh Handmade Cosmetics, MAC and Sephora -- and the list keeps going, all the way to The Art of Shaving. If you're looking to spruce up your home, check out Crate & Barrel, LoveSac, Pottery Barn and Z Gallerie. And for stylish children's fashions, Gymboree, Gap Kids and Jamie & Jack should do the trick.

But the shopping options don't end there. In addition to yoga apparel chain Lululemon Athletica, which closed its small showroom on Pineapple Avenue and reopened an enormous showroom at UTC, athletes can find the perfect gear for sweaty workouts at Champs Sports, Fit2Run, Foot Locker and Tina Stephens.

The culinary delights range from BRIO Tuscan Grille, The Capital Grille and The Cheesecake Factory to Kona Grill and Seasons 52.

Check out the Mall's "Passport to Shopping," at the customer service desk, which features deals and savings at a number of stores!

Sarasota County staples

Located just minutes from the downtown city of Sarasota, Westfield Southgate continues to remain a shopping epicenter. The mall, which opened in 1956, recently completed an $8 million renovation that features upgraded furnishings, fixtures, landscaping and color schemes and offers dedicated seating areas for shoppers to relax.

Westfield Southgate continues its upscale transformation with the addition of specialty shops to the existing 36 and a new movie cinema.

Enjoy a movie at the luxurious seven-screen Cobb CineBistro cinema. Prepare to be pampered, wined and dined in ultra-chic leather rocking chairs, in-theater dining featuring a fresh, chef-created American Bistro menu, a full bar-and-wine list and specialty cocktails. The Cobb CineBistro will feature first-run movies and independent films in a 35,000 square-foot theater with 3D capabilities for adults age 21 and older. Guests can also enjoy a bar, dining lounge and patio.

From the Macy's anchor store, Ann Taylor, Coach, White House Black Market, Francesca's Collections and Chico's to Cali Day Spa, Bare Minerals and the delightful Ziti restaurant, Southgate mall truly is a resort-shopping destination.

But Southgate isn't the only Westfield location. Situated south Sarasota, Westfield Sarasota Square features a comprehensive collection of favorite stores ranging from Sephora to the Suncoast's only Costco. The center also features the Suncoast's largest and roomiest IMAX movie theater. 

On a budget

Just a hop, skip and a jump from I-75's Exit 224 lands you at Ellenton Premium Outlets, a collection of 130 designer and name brand outlet shops in a charming outdoor setting. The shopping possibilities are endless, for guests have their pick of Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5th, Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, Lacoste, J. Crew, BCBG Max Azria, Coach, Kate Spade New York, Banana Republic Factory Store, Aeropostale, Under Armour, Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store, and more -- all with savings of 25% to 65%.

North of University Boulevard on Cooper Creek Boulevard -- directly across from the UTC -- are the Shoppes at University Town Center. This shopping plaza features an eclectic mix of national retailers and top restaurants. 

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