Date Archives: September 2017

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Five favorite places for date night in Sarasota

Sarasota Date Night Spots
Sarasota homes
are among the most enticing in the Sunshine State. Found on Florida's southwest coast, the city of about 56,000 people has been known as Circus City or even simply "Paradise."

But did you know that Sarasota is also a great place for a romantic date? 

No matter whether you are meeting someone new or celebrating an anniversary, Sarasota will provide plenty of amazing places to do it. Over the years, it has attracted some of the top chefs and world-class restaurants. Plus, there are lots of other things to see and do both before and after you eat.

Let's consider some of the most romantic options for your big night out.

  • Marina Jack II Sightseeing Cruise
    Sarasota offer many sightseeing cruises you can book for the afternoon or even for a sunset dinner excursion. The Marina Jack II is docked behind the restaurant of the same name which offers full waterfront dining and seafood classics. Lunch, dinner, group events, and even weddings are held aboard the Marina Jack II.

  • Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
    If your date loves flowers, you won't want to miss this opportunity to experience the richness and beauty of nature. This "tropical urban oasis" sits on the shores of Sarasota Bay. It is home to a world-famous conservatory, fern garden, bamboo grove, banyan grove, and much more. You'll see exotic species as well as the iconic mangroves that contribute to Florida's unique look.

  • The Ringling Museum
    The Ringling Museum consists of permanent exhibits dedicated to the Ringling Circus, a private art collection, and the estate grounds of the 56-room mansion opened in 1926. After 5 PM, it's free to walk the manicured grounds and drink in the many breathtaking sights. During the day, the Historic Asolo Theater offers live performances from celebrated theater groups. You can truly make a whole day of it at this unique museum and architectural treasure.

  • Siesta Key Beach
    Stay anywhere on the coast of Florida for very long and you'll soon realize that one of the best things in life is free: The sunset. While there are many lovely places to see it, Siesta Key Beach is the most romantic by far. It's been praised for "the whitest and finest sand in the world" – since it is 99 percent quartz and highly reflective, it feels cool no matter the time of day.

  • Celery Fields
    Celery Fields is the perfect place for an outdoor picnic. A recreation area sprawling over more than 360 acres, it attracts colorful birds throughout the year. Dotted with ponds and shaded by gorgeous old growth oaks, willows, and pines, it offers all kinds of opportunities for a romantic moment away from it all. Keep your eyes open for more than 200 bird species including the eastern meadowlark and barn owl. The shores of Ackerman Lake attract many couples, especially throughout the spring.

Make Sarasota Your Home

Do you want to enjoy Sarasota's small town charm and big city amenities all year round? Contact Wagner Realty and our REALTORS® in Sarasota will be glad to help you. Our team offers years of experience and insight into the local real estate market.



Famous Homes in Sarasota - Ca dZan

Ca' d'Zan - Home of John Ringling

Sarasota Ringling Home
Sarasota's neighborhoods are teeming with gorgeous, modern, waterfront homes, but one building still stands out nearly a century after it was first built. One of the most beautiful and historic homes in Sarasota, the Ca' d'Zan, was restored to its former glory at the turn of this century. Today, the bayfront mansion's Venetian-inspired architecture and opulent furnishings are just as impressive as they were in 1926, when the Ringling family moved in and hosted glamorous parties on the water.

Whether you want to step back into the Roaring Twenties, catch a gorgeous sunset, or learn more about Sarasota's history as a circus town, this mansion-turned-museum is a must. Here are some of our favorite things to do at the Ca' d'Zan.

Sarasota's World-class architecture

Admire World-Class European Architecture

When circus magnate John Ringling started building the Ca' d'Zan ("House of John") in 1926, his family was one of the wealthiest in the world. Instead of pinning their dream homes on Pinterest, they traveled through Europe for inspiration, and the authentic masterpiece is a great example of Venetian and Spanish architecture from the 1800's. The Ringlings spent $1.65 million (more than $20 million today) and imported most of their materials – and design ideas – from Europe, and the manicured grounds and well-preserved mansion may transport you to the middle of Italy with their authentic details. For example, the roof is tiled with a cargo ship's worth of salvaged Spanish antique tiles, and the home itself is modeled after the Doge's Palace in Venice, Italy.

Enjoy Gorgeous Sunsets Over Sarasota Bay

There are plenty of places to watch the sunset in Sarasota, but this mansion offers one of the oldest and most beautiful vantage points. As the sun begins to set over Sarasota every night, bursts of color illuminate the blue bay and cast a golden glow over the Ca' d'Zan's marble walls. Once a month, donors gather on the outdoor terrace for live music and gourmet dinners during this natural spectacle. It's easy to see why Mable Ringling commissioned a custom dock and gondola for the property. In the 1920's, servants would take Mable and her friends for picturesque sunset gondola rides along the shore. Towering Banyan trees, colorful gardens, a six-story tower, and a patio right on the sea wall complete the picturesque outdoor experience.

Take a Walk through the Ringling Family's Life

The mansion was donated to the State of Florida in the late 1930's, but it deteriorated so much in the decades to come that Ethan Hawke and Gwyneth Paltrow filmed Great Expectations there in 1996. By then, the dilapidated mansion was the perfect fit for a reclusive Dickensian widow's dusty, crumbling manor. Fortunately, that's all changed, and the well-restored mansion now looks a lot like it did when the Ringlings first moved in. Renovations began in 2002, and today the mansion is meticulously restored and furnished with much of its original artwork, décor, and furniture. Restored murals by famous artists depict vivid circus and Renaissance scenes customized for the Ringlings themselves. Even clothing in the closets, liquor bottles in the bar, and silver in the butler's pantry are original possessions of the Ringling family.

Our REALTORS® are eager to help families like the Ringlings start a beautiful new chapter in Sarasota, Florida. Whether you want a mansion on the bay or an apartment downtown, we will make sure your search is productive and your deal is fair. Contact Wagner Realty today to find a real estate professional that can help you find your dream home in Sarasota.

Contact Wagner Realty

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