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St. Armands Circle and Lido Key

If you’re looking for great day trips near Anna Maria Island, St. Armands Circle should be on your radar. St. Armands is a grassy, palm-filled island shopping center surrounded by a plaza divided into four quadrants of stores, boutiques, and restaurants.

This hub of upscale boutiques and excellent restaurants brings a little bit of city life to the laid-back island community of the keys. Close enough to Anna Maria Island, but still far enough to feel like a getaway, this is a great destination for an afternoon shopping spree or a date night with your partner.

This sophisticated shopping and dining mecca is located on St. Armands Key, a small key just off mainland Sarasota that is directly adjacent to Lido Key. Here are some of the things to do and places to eat at St. Armands Circle, one of the best day trips near Anna Maria Island.

st. armands circle shopping

Shop ‘til You Drop

St. Armands is home to tons of high-end boutique shops for you to browse, including fashion, footwear, jewelry and gifts.

Shops include well-known brands like Tommy Bahama, Lilly Pulitzer, and Sunglass Hut. Check out Foxy Lady for a wide range of styles of clothing and accessories from designers like Nicole Miller, Michael Stars, and Joseph Ribkoff. If you’re in the market for a new bikini, Swim City offers suits and beach apparel for both men and women from companies like Body Glove, Eco Swim, Freya, Speedo, and more

St. Armands has plenty of gift and specialty stores, too. Like it spicy? Visit Pepper Palace, a shop that carries pepper-based sauces, rubs, and salsas ranging from mild to six million on the Scoville scale. To taste-test the latter, you have to sign a waiver.

Stop by the Florida Olive Oil Company for some gourmet cooking ingredients. Head to Scent Sense for handmade artisanal soaps made with natural and organic ingredients that are locally sourced. For pet gear and dog-related home décor, visit The Black Dog, a general store chain that sells apparel, accessories, and canine accessories with style.

st. armands circle restaurants

Dine in Style

St. Armands is a great place to enjoy lunch or dinner out, as it boasts a quiet neighborhood-style environment with lots of patio space.

15 South Ristorante Enoteca (15 South Blvd. of the Presidents) offers upscale Italian until 10 p.m. and classy nightclub by night. It has excellent brick-oven pizza, pastas, and other Italian entrees. True to its name, enoteca, which means wine repository in Italian, 15 South has an excellent selection of wines from around the world. They often have a pianist tinkling jazz tunes while you eat.

The Columbia (411 St. Armands Cir.) is a traditional Spanish chain that dates back to 1905. Try their famous 1905 salad – make a meal out of it by adding turkey or shrimp. They also have an incredible Cuban sandwich, lobster croquettes, and a long list of local fish dishes.

Head to the Crab & Fin (420 St. Armands Cir.) for a seafood-oriented, upscale-casual dining experience. This restaurant features generous portions of fish and seafood from around the world, as well as local catches of the day. Try the cioppino, an Italian-influenced San Franciscan fish stew. They have an extensive wine list, as well as beer and cocktails.

st. armands circle spa

Relax at the Spa

St. Armands has a few excellent spas and salons you’ll want to visit.

The Met (35 South Blvd. of the Presidents) allows you to both get a massage and pick out something nice to wear for dinner. This fashion house and day spa offers an afternoon of pure luxury in its elegant tranquil environment, as well as a men’s and women’s clothing store, and in-house jewelry store.

There’s also Cristobal’s Massage (upstairs at 11 S. Blvd. of the Presidents), a spa dedicated to providing high-quality therapy services by trained professionals with years of experience. Try a relaxation, deep tissue, aromatherapy, or even couple’s massage on your day trip from Siesta Key.

This is just a small sampling of what’s available to you at St. Armand’s Circle; in total there are over 130 merchants that you can easily access on this walkable key, along with a beautiful walkway filled with stunning classical Greek and Roman replica statues, some of which were owned by John Ringling, extraordinary water views and landscaping, and interpretive signs.

This must-see attraction is just a 25-30 minute drive directly south of your Anna Maria Island vacation rental – you can head south straight there through Longboat Key on a very scenic ride along Gulf Drive.


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