Beyond Sarasota County’s 35 miles of coastline lies a haven of arts and culture, eclectic events and exquisite dining. The various cities along Florida’s Gulf Coast® are as unique as the different sands on each shore and feature hidden pieces of paradise. Start your journey with the county’s staples – downtown Sarasota, Siesta Key Beach, and the City of Venice – but be sure to leave time for new adventures. You’ll see recent growth in areas such as the Rosemary District, Newtown, and the southern city of North Port, now the home of the Atlanta Braves CoolToday Park Spring Training facility. You’ll quickly discover there’s a variety of new ways to experience Sarasota County.
Beachfront properties can be found on the pristine Lido Key and the tranquil Longboat Key. Lido Key properties include the retro Sandcastle Resort with its 179 guest rooms and 2,500 sq. ft. of meeting space and the luxurious Lido Beach Resort, consisting of 223 guest rooms and 6,000 sq. ft. of meeting space– giving groups various price point options so that everyone has an opportunity to meet beachside. Longboat Key, known for its luxurious exclusivity features the all-in-clusive Resort at Longboat Key Club which boasts onsite marina, golf course, tennis garden, and spa.
For groups that prefer the convenience of a downtown location in Sarasota County, they will also have the luxury of a waterfront view. Each of our full-service downtown properties are located on, or very close to, the Sarasota bay front. The Hyatt Regency Sarasota is Sarasota County’s largest property with 294 guest rooms and over 20,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. Less than a half mile away is The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, consisting of 266 guest rooms and 26,000 sq. ft. of meeting space. Each property is within walking distance of all that Sarasota’s vibrant downtown has to offer, including dozens of restaurant and nightlife options, multiple performing arts theaters, and a plethora of boutique and specialty shops.
Home to award-winning and legendary restaurants, Sarasota County is brimming with culinary experiences. From outdoor dining, fresh, local seafood to authentic Amish cuisine and new restaurants popping up monthly, Sarasota has one of the largest groups of independent restaurants and hosts the most restaurants per capita for small cities. And, you’re sure to dine in style as our restaurants overlook beaches, skylines and downtowns, and our many food and wine events are accompanied with local brews and craft cocktails.
Make a statement with teambuilding that pushes attendees to break out of their comfort zones.
1. Circus Arts Conservatory: Offers a variety of circus-theme group activities the flying trapeze to aerial silks along with other custom events to fit your organization needs.
2. Big Cat Habitat & Gulf Coast Sanctuary: Groups can participate in animal encounters or demonstrastions amidst more than 150 exotic and domestic animals.
3. White Buffalo Saloon: Weekly line dance lessons, along iwth doord, drinks and live, music performances; private teachers available for group classes.
4. Axe & Bull: Sarasota's only indoor axe throwing facility, groups are encouraged to cater and bring food and drinks to enjoy.
5. Sarasota Honey Company: Beekeper Experience Tour or private adults tour about bookeeping, benefits of the hive, agriculture and honey taste testing.
TOURS: TROLLEYS, TIKIS & YOUR OWN TWO FEET
The deep history, the rich culinary scene and diverse terrain of Sarasota County are best experienced on a tour.
1. Key Culinary Tours: Custom group and specialty food tours in St. Armands Circle, Downtown Sarasota and Venice.
2. Discover Sarasota Tours: Offers over eight types of tours about fascinating people, enchanting places, and intriguing events that shaped Sarasota’s rich culture in an air-conditioned trolley.
3. Sarasota Walking Tours: Travel back in time, walk in the present and discover the future through one of America’s most interesting and historic cities; private custom designed tours available.
4. Cruisin’ Tikis: Corporate retreats, events and conferences charters; maximum of six people per tiki boat; for larger groups, you may rent additional tikis and cruise together.
5. Endless Summer Eco Tours and Rentals: Electric bike rental and group tours with free delivery and pickup to your hotel.
Sarasota and Manatee County businesses who host meetings in Sarasota County are applicable for the Bring It Home Meeting Incentive. The incentive is distributed in the form of a hotel room rebate, equal to $10 per room night generated.
- Program dates must be consecutive.
- Must have a minimum of 10 rooms on peak night for eligibility.
- Valid only for corporate, association, government, nonprofit, social, military, education, religious, & fraternal groups.
- Personal lifetime gatherings such as birthday parties, bar/bat mitzvahs, weddings, anniversaries, commemorations, commencement ceremonies, funerals, reunions, baptisms, etc. are not eligible.
- Festivals, carnivals, street fairs, expos, etc. are not eligible.
- Groups must be a registered corporation or organization (W9 required).
- Room blocks must be booked at hotel(s) located in Sarasota County. A list of these hotels can be provided upon request.
- Group must not be receiving any additional funding through Sarasota County Tourist Development Tax (TDT).
- Interest form must be received and acknowledged by Visit Sarasota County prior to hotel contract date.
To apply for the Bring It Home Meeting Incentive, visit SarasotaMeetings.com to reach out to a Visit Sarasota County (VSC) Sales Team member.
In addition to providing referrals for vendors and other local professionals, the VSC Sales Team can create and distribute RFPs to hotels on behalf of the planner, personalize and mail or email Save-the-Date postcards or eblasts, help plan and accompany on site visits, and facilitate visitor services from welcome bags to onsite personnel sharing destination advice. VSC can also help plan CSR activations and pair your company to one of the 2,154 nonprofits in our county that best fits your mission and values. Let your Visit Sarasota County destination expert do the legwork on your next meeting, and check out all the great group venues, dining and only-in-Sarasota experiences at www.SarasotaMeetings.com