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St. Petersburg Beach

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by terrier, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. terrier

    terrier Well-Known Member

    Mrs. T. and I are planning to head to Florida for some R&R the second weekend of March, and the most convenient beachside accomodations we could find were on St. Petersburg Beach (five-story hotel on Gulf Boulevard). Anything we should know about the area, or what to visit or avoid?
    Let's just say we're a little older than the MTV spring break or BET beach party demographic (why we're hitting the Gulf instead of the Atlantic). I'm hoping to get in some swimming, some volleyball and maybe a nice meal or two.
  2. In Exile

    In Exile Member

    I've vacationed in that precise spot twice with my family, and once with a buddy for spring training (can't remember the name, the Sand Piper? next to the Great Western Motel?) and Mrs. Exile and I are over 40. There's not a huge spring break scene there. There's a great seafood restaurant nearby in Passa Grille just past the very pink old Don Carlos or something hotel (Babe Ruth used to stay there, and the Red Sox do now, I think), specializes in crab cakes - Passa Grille is an older, funkier neighborhood about a four-mile beach walk or short drive from St. Pete Beach. You can walk the beach for miles - I'd put in 6-8 mile runs everyday before it got hot. Lots' of restaurants on the boulevard, LOTS of retirees lining up at 4:00, and an Irish bar called Boston Bob's that's run by this Boston couple. A few relatively quiet and okay beach bars, and then there's rest of Tampa to explore if you want- Ybor City in particular. If you want to take in some spring training games, avoid Tampa and head an hour south to Bradenton where the Pirates are - small little ballpark, still cheap, or if you want to ditch Mrs. Terrier, there are always the gentlemen's establishments on Dale Mabry Highway. Only downside is that each time I've gone down there, we've seen someone dead in the street - a retiree who dropped of a heart attack.

    You'll have fun there.
  3. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    You're probably thinking of the Vinoy, my hotel of choice in the area. Even if you don't stay at the Vinoy, stop by late afternoon-early evening and relax on the big front porch with a nice cigar. It's a pleasant scene.
  4. pallister

    pallister Guest

    Downtown St. Pete is nice, and it's rarely crowded.

    I'll second the Bradenton spring training idea. McKechnie Field is really nice, which makes up for the fact you're watching the Pirates.
  5. andyouare?

    andyouare? Guest

    And if you get a chance, go to Ft. Desoto. It's a state park so no annoying touristy beach stores. Rent a two-person kayak and pat manatees on the head, and if you're lucky porpoises swim right next to you. Beautiful.

    If you're in downton St. Pete (near the stadium) check out The Independent bar. (If it's still there?) They have beers from all over on tap. All these strange Eastern European brews. Very strong. Very good.
  6. Brooklyn Bridge

    Brooklyn Bridge Active Member

    There is also the Kennedy assassination/Cuban Missle Crisis museum, which are in the same building (or at least relatively close IIRC). The missle museum is cool becuase it has rooms set up like the 1950s, complete with TVs and radios telling you to duck and cover--like that's going to help.

    You also HAVE to check out the Dali museum....
  7. Stone Cane

    Stone Cane Member

  8. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Active Member

    I agree with the n00bies. :D

    Visit the Salvador Dali museum. However, do not sing "Hello, Dali!" upon entry.
  9. In Exile

    In Exile Member

    Dali, YES!
  10. Editude

    Editude Active Member

    Grouper sandwiches at the Hurricane in Pass-a-Grille.
  11. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Rooftop at the Hurricane is great at sunset for a drink, but the food is overrated and overpriced IMO. Dockside Dave's a few miles up Gulf Boulevard has the best grouper sandwich in Tampa Bay.

    And this thread should be St. Pete Beach, the city commission formally changed the town name to forge its own identity!
  12. jackandcoke

    jackandcoke Member

    Have to second cranberry's mention of the Renaissance Vinoy. It's a terrific property that's classy and relaxing. If you have a Marriott VIP card, you can usually get a favorable rate. Relaxing on that sprawling front porch with a cold beverage around dusk is the way to go.
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