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Five Spots: Sarasota

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Ritz EXT

The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota / HERALD-TRIBUNE ARCHIVES

At the risk of angering the denizens of all the other dazzling communities being spotlighted in TICKET +, for the highest concentration of top spots, your best bet is downtown Sarasota, the center of the county of the same name and, well, all of Southwest Florida.

EAT: Mozaic
1377 Main St., Sarasota; 951-6272; mozaicsarasota.com
Chef/owner Dylan Elhajoui weaves Northern African and Mediterranean ingredients and techniques into a menu that still manages to be more eclectic American than ethnic, in a cozy, multi-level interior space that has a distinctly urban feel that's different than most downtown sport. Mozaic's wine program is sharp and loaded with well-priced items by the glass and bottle and the desserts are some of the best in the area. – Brian Ries

DRINK: Cock & Bull Pub
975 Cattlemen Road, Sarasota; 363-1262; the-cock-n-bull.com
Tucked into an old wooden house out near the interstate, the Cock & Bull is a destination for both beer and music lovers. With over 40 draughts and over 900 different bottles, the pub houses one of the best selections of craft beer and imports in the area, while Cock & Bull’s back yard is a frequent stop for both local and touring musicians. – Brian Ries

SHOP: The Woman's Exchange
539 S. Orange Ave, Sarasota; 955-7859; sarasotawex.com
The greatest consignment store in Florida? We think so. Dedicated to the support of Sarasota and Manatee counties' local arts community since its inception in 1962, The Woman's Exchange is where you will find an army of dedicated volunteers working to ensure that the ever changing inventory is filled with fantastic finds like Baccarat crystal, Tiffany silver and Gucci handbags. – Wade Tatangelo

PLAY: Livingstone’s Amusement Center
5947 Clark Center Ave., Sarasota, 925-7665, livingstonesamusements.com
With over 50,000 square feet, Livingstone’s has something for everyone, from indoor paintball to go-karts, video games to pool tables, rock climbing to skee ball. There is also a full bar, as well as an adults-only area if you want to escape the frenzy of the gaming areas for more refined amusement. – Brian Ries

STAY: The Ritz-Carlton
1111 Ritz Carlton Drive, Sarasota; 309-2000; ritzcarlton.com
The actual hotel in downtown Sarasota offers everything you would expect from a Ritz-Carlton plus many rooms providing stunning views of The Ringling Bridge and Sarasota Bay. But what makes our Ritz extra special is its Beach Club on Lido Key. It's a ridiculously alluring pool and restaurant resort right on the beach that also includes the Lido Key Tiki Bar, one of the places on the west coast of the state to imbibe an umbrella-studded beverage while watching the sun sink into the Gulf of Mexico. – Wade Tatangelo

Last modified: February 19, 2014
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