What is the meaning behind celebrating Memorial Day?

What is the meaning behind celebrating Memorial Day?

We all love celebrating holidays, the picnics, family gatherings, great food, days off of work or school. But what is the meaning behind Memorial Day?

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

Wikipedia says,

Memorial Day is a US Federal holiday wherein the men and women who died while serving in the US Armed Forces are remembered. The holiday, which is celebrated every year on the final Monday of May,was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service. It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries.

Annual Decoration Days for particular cemeteries are held on a Sunday in late spring or early summer in some rural areas of the American South, notably in the mountains. In cases involving a family graveyard where remote ancestors as well as those who were deceased more recently are buried, this may take on the character of an extended family reunion to which some people travel hundreds of miles. People gather on the designated day and put flowers on graves and renew contacts with kinfolk and others. There often is a religious service and a “dinner on the ground,” the traditional term for a potluck meal in which people used to spread the dishes out on sheets or tablecloths on the grass. It is believed that this practice began before the American Civil War and thus may reflect the real origin of the “memorial day” idea.

Memorial Day is not to be confused with Veterans Day; Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, while Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans

For many Americans, the central event is attending one of the thousands of parades held on Memorial Day in large and small cities all over the country. Most of these feature marching bands and an overall military theme with the National Guard and other servicemen participating along with veterans and military vehicles from various wars.

One of the longest-standing traditions is the running of the Indianapolis 500, an auto race which has been held in conjunction with Memorial Day since 1911.It runs on the Sunday preceding the Memorial Day holiday. The Coca-Cola 600 stock car race has been held later the same day since 1961.

We here at Tropical Beach Resorts love to celebrate holidays, and we love celebrate them with you and your family. So pack up the car and the kids and head to Siesta Key! Have a safe and happy Memorial Day long weekend!

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, FL 34242
800-235-3493
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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Do I need a car when I visit Siesta Key?

Do I need a car when I come to Siesta Key?

Siesta Key Beach

Siesta Key Beach

This is a very frequently asked question of the guests coming to visit us here at Tropical Beach Resorts. It is really a personal preference depending on what you are planning to do while you are visiting our little slice of island paradise. But here are some tips and facts to help with your decision.

Siesta Key is a 7 mile barrier island off the southern end of Siesta Key. The island is about 11 Miles, or a 20 minute drive from Sarasota Airport (airport code ‘SRQ’). There are all the major rental car companies available at the Sarasota Airport. A taxi ride from the airport is approximately $30-$35. We suggest having the ride set up prior to landing to avoid waiting and ease of transportation. We recommend using the service Night Ride, they have nice town cars and the drivers are knowledgeable of the island and our resort specifically. Check them out at www.newnightride.com or call them at 941-922-0400.

If you are traveling into Tampa Airport or St. Pete/Clearwater Airport, the distance is a solid hour drive. Shuttles are available for around $90 plus gratuity for groups of 2-4. Larger groups will need to secure vans, which are an add’l expense. There are all the major rental car companies at both airports. You have some options here…you can keep the car the entirety of your stay or some people will get one-way rentals and drop them off at Sarasota Airport and then taxi to the hotel. For private cars, check out www.newnightride.com or for shuttle rides, we suggest www.supershuttle.com. The shuttles offer either shared rides, which are a bit cheaper or you can reserve the entire shuttle for larger parties.

If you are at the hotel and you decide you need a car to go on a Sarasota adventure, there is an Enterprise Rent-a-Car right off the island and they will come to the hotel and pick you up. This is good if you only need a car for part of your stay (www.enterprise.com). Nearby attractions include MOTE Aquarium, Selby Gardens, Ringling Museum, Myakka State Park, St. Armands Circle, just to name a few!

Once you are on the island, there are a number of free shuttle services which work on a gratuity-only system. They run from early morning until after the bars and restaurants close. There are a great way to get around the island and not have to worry about parking, which can sometimes be tricky during holidays and on weekends. They will pick you up here at the hotel and then you can just call when you are ready to come back.

 

Sun Ride Pedi Cab

Sun Ride Pedi Cab

There are so many activities within walking distance of the hotel, if you are coming to the island to just kick back and relax, you will be in good shape! There is a grocery store, 7-11, drug store, post office, plenty of shops, restaurants and bars which you can walk to within 10-15 mins or less! And if you are just looking to hit the beach, the rooms are only a minute to three minute walk from the sand. There is a local marina that rents pontoon or motorboats to explore the intercoastal, you can go parasailing, jet skiing, stand-up paddleboarding, biking, the outdoor activities are endless! There is the Siesta Key Village which is 3 miles north of the Tropical Beach Resorts, which has an abundance of other stores, restaurants and bars.

There are also plenty of local restaurants that deliver to the hotel, so you never have to leave the property if you don’t want to. We also have a service that will stock up your room with groceries or other gifts, such as flowers, etc.

Contact the friendly staff here at Tropical Beach Resorts for more information on specifics or other questions you might have! 800-235-3493

 

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, Fl 34242
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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What is the Village that everyone is talking about!?

Siesta Key Village

Siesta Key Village

Siesta Key Village is in the heart of Siesta Key with designer shopping, local dining, laidback nightlife and more! Located just steps from the beachfront, The Village is a quaint and cool island strip where there is just enough to explore but not so large that you feel overwhelmed. By your second visit you will feel like a local!

The village is the perfect spot to take a break during your beach day and get a bite to eat at one of the outdoor restaurants or grab an ice cream cone at the popular SubZero Ice Cream. Need more sunscreen, towels, beach toys for the kids or some souvenirs from your trip? You’ll have plenty of shops that you can browse through that will have a plethora of Siesta Key shirts, hats, bumper stickers, you name it, so you can truly embrace being a tourist at the most beautiful beach in America. But don’t worry, there are more to the shops in the Village than touristy sea shells and postcards, there are also unique stores and trendy boutiques. Treat yourself to a trendy new designer dress at The Foxy Lady. Stop by and “try before you buy” a bottle of wine at Siesta Key Tropical Wines. The Local Bean is coffee shop in paradise that supports local art, local venders, and serves an awesome cup of organic. fair-trade coffee. If you have a little extra time, drop in for a class at Studio Rubylake. The exercise studio has a noncompetitive, laid back and peaceful atmosphere focusing on working out for fun and relaxation, and releasing stress – and a Vacation Package: $25 for unlimited group classes for 7 days. One of my personal favorites is Siesta Key Bead Shack. This boutique sells hand crafted jewelry and beads, and you can even design your own jewelry.

Siesta Key Village becomes a popular nightlife spot after dark. If you’d like to enjoy a few drinks and listen to some live music then you’ll love the Siesta Key Oyster Bar, The Hub, or Gilligans. Are you looking for breakfast, lunch or dinner? Laid back, casual or fine dining? Japanese, Italian, Mexican or American? You’ll find such a wide variety of dining experiences here you wouldn’t even have to eat at the same restaurant twice during your visit – unless it becomes your favorite!

Siesta Key Village

Siesta Key Village

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite eats:
The Old Salty Dog
5023 Ocean Boulevard
Siesta Key, FL 34242
(Very family and dog friendly!)

Jo To Japanese Steakhouse
5218 Ocean Blvd.
Siesta Key, FL 34242
(Great Hibachi. Kids love to watch the chefs perform tricks)

Blasé Café
5263 Ocean Blvd
Siesta Key, FL 34242
(Home of Siesta Key’s best martinis)

The best part is there is are free services that will cart you around anywhere on the key from 10am 2am! So don’t worry about having a few daiquiris because you can be dropped off right at your hotel or condo door. Also, it’s the perfect way to avoid the public beach parking. Save this number on your phone for your trip, you’ll be happy you have it later! 941-306-9097

Siesta Key Free Rides

Siesta Key Free Rides

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And one last thing I would like to mention about the village… All the shops and eateries are locally owned and individually awesome. No chain stores or strip mall feel here! Each place is unique and the area has truly kept the classic beach town feel.

Why not ask a staff member at Tropical Beach Resorts which local spot in the Siesta Key Village is their favorite – the locals know best! They can offer all the little suggestions to make your trip the island get-a-way of your dreams!

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, FL 34242
941-349-3330
Reservations 800-235-3493 –
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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Tour the gorgeous city of Sarasota from the seat of a bike!

Bike Tours in Sarasota

Bike Tours in Sarasota

 

Sarasota Bike Tours is a unique way to experience Siesta Key and beyond. They are the first and only bike company in Sarasota and they plan for everything you could need! Bikes, helmets, kayaks, snacks or picnic lunch and a local guide are all provided for you. Taking one of their trips allows you to enjoy the more hidden beauty of Sarasota while being active with friends or family. The owner of the tour company is a Sarasota native, so he knows all the best back roads, nature and architecture to explore from the seat of a bike or kayak through Sarasota, Siesta key and Lido Key.

Siesta Key Sunset Tour

Want to explore the number one beach in the U.S.A? With this tour you can experience a leisurely ride on the roads and on Siesta’s white sand beach. Take in the renowned Siesta Key sun set while enjoying a glass of wine or beer with your snack at the end of your trip, which is all provided by Sarasota Bike Tours. The tour starts and finishes in the Siesta Key Public Beach parking lot, and if you are staying on Siesta Key they can usually begin and end at your condo, hotel or beach house.

Duration 2 hours

Distance 5-7 miles

Price $49 (This tour includes a snack and beverage.)

Siesta Key Ride & Kayak Tour

This tour also starts at Siesta Key Public beach, and then continues down Midnight Pass Rd to Turtle beach, where you will be prepped for a kayak trip through old Midnight Pass, the Jim Neville Marine Preservation and turtle lagoon . You will conclude with a short ride back to the Siesta public beach, or your condo, hotel or beach house.

Duration 4 hours

Distance 8 miles

Price $99 (This tour includes a box lunch.)

Why not enjoy an adventure off of Siesta Key on your vacation? Sarasota Bike Tours also has excursion to explore Lido Key and our beautiful downtown area:

Downtown Historic Tour
Lido Beach Sunset Tour
Lido Key Bike & Kayak Tour
Ringling Mansion & Sarasota Bay Front Tour
Taste of Sarasota Tour

Sarasota Bike Tours offers a 20% discount for guests who bring their own bike.

Prices include bikes, helmets, and all equipment. Sarasota Bike Tours accept requests for any tour on days not previously booked. Feel free to call if you have any questions or special requests.

Contact Info:
Jason Crain
(941) 313-0613
jason@sarasotabiketours.com
http://sarasotabiketours.com

The knowledgeable staff at Tropical Beach Resorts are happy to suggest a wide variety of activities during your visit to Siesta Key, Florida. Let us help you plan the island get-a-way of your dreams!

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, FL 34242
941-349-3330
Reservations 800-235-3493 –
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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Do you want to swim with manatees during your Florida vacation?

A beautiful Florida manatee resting

A beautiful Florida manatee resting

Do you want to swim with manatees during your Florida vacation?

Do you want to swim with manatees during your Florida vacation?

Get up close and personal to the gentle creatures!

Get up close and personal to the gentle creatures!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do you want to swim with manatees during your stay in Florida?

Have you ever gotten up close and personal with a manatee? Well here is your chance! I have lived in Sarasota, FL for many years now and have always been telling people about the gentle, sea cows, but have never had the opportunity to go and swim with them.
We recently took the short drive up to Crystal River, FL and rented our own pontoon boat to go and explore the warm springs where the manatees had their own sanctuaries. It is about a 2.5 hr drive North up 75 for the trip, but is soooo worth it! Make sure to get your snorkel gear, wear a wetsuit and get your underwater camera! The springs are a little chilly for us humans, but they are the perfect temperature for the manatees while the gulf is heating up with the spring temperatures. The best time to view the manatees is in the winter months from November to March.  There are many different tour options, or you can be your own tour guide and take out kayaks or pontoon boats. But heed the speed advisories, these gentle manatees are always around and motor blade marks are evident on many of the creatures, so always be careful to  boat slowly and cautiously in these waters as well as any of the close to shore waters where the signage and inlets advise to do so.
The Florida Game and Wildlife Commission has set designated spots where no humans can enter, but can only observe these docile creatures in their natural habitat. In these sanctuaries, you will see so many manatees just floating, bobbing up and down and gently rolling about each other. The manatees are resting most of the time in the sanctuaries, but then there are many others which are outside and swimming about all through the river and its small canals. You will see large mama manatees swimming with their smaller babies right behind them, it’s truly an beautiful sight.
While snorkeling around these sanctuaries and through the river, manatees come right up beside you, brush past and keep swimming on like you are not even there! The law says you cannot touch them and you are not to be bothering them in their habitat, but you can get right up close to them and they’re not afraid of coming to visit! The animals are quite large though and at some points, the water was murky and you couldn’t see them coming, so don’t be surprised if they sneak right up beside you or underneath you….it’s just their space and you are in it!
You will also see an abundance of other fish and wildlife during your excursion. We saw sheepshead, snook, and many more tropically colored fish. There are also beautiful egrets, blue herons and other birds sailing through the air above.
Make sure to put this adventure on your list of things to do while visiting Florida, It is an activity that you will never forget and you will be talking about for a long time! These beautiful, graceful, yet at the same time cute and clumsy animals are a truly magical experience and will truly make you feel like one with nature.
Need directions and more information on visiting the manatees? Come speak with the local, knowledgeable staff at the front desk at Tropical Beach Resorts. We are happy to look up information, print out maps and any other helpful tidbits that will aid in your enjoyment of your precious vacation time.

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Siesta Key, Fl 34242
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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Where can you and your children go for Easter on Siesta Key?

Easter Sunrise Service on Siesta Key

Easter Sunrise Service on Siesta Key

Siesta Key is home to several beautiful churches if you prefer a more traditional service:
St Boniface Episcopal Church
5615 Midnight Pass Rd, Sarasota, FL 34242
www.bonifacechurch.org

St Michael the Archangel Catholic Church
5394 Midnight Pass Road
Sarasota, FL 34242
www.stmichaelssiesta.com

Siesta Key Chapel-Presbyterian
4615 Gleason Ave, Sarasota, FL 34242
www.siestakeychapel.org

The Easter Bunny visits Siesta Key!

The Easter Bunny visits Siesta Key!

 

If your little ones are looking for some Easter fun, the 14th Annual Easter Egg Hunt & Games on Siesta Key for kids ages 1 – 6 takes place April 19, 2014. Siesta Key Oyster Bar is sponsoring the event this year. Sign the kids up to this event for face painting, Easter egg hunting, goodie bags, fire truck tours and more family fun; but, do it quick because there are only 125 spots! The festivities will take place at Beach Access point #5 at Beach Road and Ocean Blvd from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.  Tickets are $10 and each child will receive an Easter Bunny or stuffed toy, goody bag and participate in an Easter Egg hunt for eggs stuffed with prizes. The rest of the family will enjoy the trip to the beach too with trolley rides around the key. So mark the date on your calendar, April 19, and sign up through instructions on this link:  http://www.siestakeyvillage.org/images/pdf/easter_registration_2014.pdf

 

 Tropical Beach Resorts on Siesta Key will have an Easter Egg Hunt at 9:00 a.m on April 20, 2014 for all the kids staying at the resort this Easter vacation!  See the front desk for more information on this! Let the knowledgeable staff at Tropical Beach Resorts suggest more fun activities for kids during your visit to Siesta Key, Florida. Let us help you plan the island get-a-way of your dreams!

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, FL 34242
941-349-3330
Reservations 800-235-3493 –
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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Have you ever seen the ‘Green Flash’ at sunset on Siesta Key?

Have you ever seen the ‘Green Flash’ at sunset or even sunrise on Siesta Key?

the green flash

The green flash is a naturally occurring phenomenon

There’s an old Florida legend that says if you are watching sunset at just the right time, you just may see a green flash. But as it happens, the green flash is a natural phemonemon!

Here’s what Wikipedia says: “Green flashes and green rays are optical phenomena that sometimes occur right after sunset or right before sunrise. When the conditions are right, a green spot is visible above the upper rim of the disk of the sun. The green appearance usually lasts for no more than a second or two. Sometimes (rarely) the green flash can resemble a green ray shooting up from the sunset (or sunrise) point. Green flashes occur because the atmosphere can cause the light from the sun to separate out into different colors. Green flashes are a group of phenomena which stem from slightly different causes, and therefore some types of green flashes are more common than others.

Lots of people will claim that they have seen the green flash at sunset, but they are tricky to find and don’t happen all the time. While there is no optimal condition that will guarantee a green flash sighting, a green flash is best observed with a clear view of the horizon and in an area that is free of pollution. It is more likely to see a green flash when there is visibility of several miles, almost to the point of the curvature of the earth, and the sky is cloudless.

Green flash sightings frequently occur at the ocean, where more of the atmosphere is visible and the line of sight is virtually parallel to the horizon. Prairies also have the appropriate conditions for a green flash sighting. One popular but inaccurate explanation attributes green flashes to the sun shining through the waves on the ocean. However, the light entering a wave is bent downward, into the water and cannot escape.

Another common misconception is that a green flash is afterimage, a result of the saturation of the red cones in the human retina or that it was an enduring image that remained after the sun had set. But sightings of the green flash at sunrise made both of these ideas implausible.

Siesta Key has some of the most brilliantly colored sunsets, expansive rays of glowing reds, golds, oranges, pinks, purples, and blues, and also reflecting clouds with clear skies. Sunsets are quite the event on Siesta Key with crowds of people flocking to the beach to see the sunset every evening. After the sun sets, you’ll hear a variety of celebrations occur. Some people clap, cheer, some play music, while others sound off an airhorn. Whatever the celebration, it is an event not to be missed while visiting this special island. Don’t forget your camera and your own type of celebration!

What’s the best thing to do for sunset viewing? Walk to the beach from Tropical Beach Resorts!! With just a short walk from the hotel, the cool, white sand is waiting for your enjoyment! The hotel provides beach chairs and beach towels for you to take to the beach, so you can spend time enjoying the beautiful views!


Tropical Beach Resorts

6717 Sarasea Circle
Siesta Key, FL 34242

941-349-3330

http://www.tropicalbeachresorts.com
http://www.facebook.com/tropicalbeachresorts

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Ever wonder why Siesta Key has such amazing sugar white sand?

Siesta Key White Sand

What makes Siesta Key sand so white

The sugar white sand of Siesta Key explained:

Siesta Key White Sand

What makes Siesta Key sand so white?

I have to tell you that growing up as a Sarasota local with countless hours spent on the beautiful beaches of Siesta Key I took the sugar white sands a bit for granted.

My search for the truth behind our perfect sand came while visiting cousins up north one summer when I was shocked to find out I needed to run from the shore to my towel because the sand was so hot!

Ok, it was obvious that the sand was made of larger, rougher grains and not at
any where near as pretty as the beaches of Siesta KeyŠ but who would have
guessed it would scorch my feet! All of my beach experiences on Siesta Key
did not require shoes until you hit the parking lot, in fact we would often
leave our flip flops at the edge of the sand, ­ a pretty common practice for locals.

check out this white sandman!

None of that cold snow here, the only white, fluffy stuff is Siesta Key sand!

 

Most other beaches are made mostly of coral, but Siesta Key’s sand is 99%
quartz crushed into a pure white fine powder. Because quartz is a crystal it
actually disperses the heat from the sun and leaves Siesta Key beaches cool
to the touch. Harvard University¹s geology department discovered that
through millenniums, quartz from the southern Appalachian Mountains down the
rivers until it was eventually deposited into the Gulf of Mexico and then
onto the coast of Florida. No one can tell exactly how long this process
takes, but because the grains of sand are so fine we know it to be eons in
the making.

Sugar white sands of Siesta Key

Sugar white sandy shores on Siesta Key, FL

Siesta Key white sand

The sand feels like cool, powdered sugar between your toes!

 

Siesta Key is widely recognized for having the BEST sand in the world! It’s
fine, white and feels almost like powdered sugar in between your toes while you walk across the beautiful beach. In 1987 at the Great International White Sand Beach Challenge, it was scientifically proven that Siesta Key obviously has the whitest, softest sand beach in the world. And since sand like ours takes eons to create, Siesta ended any future challenges for this title.

 

 

If you want to experience the best beach with the whitest sand in the world,
Tropical Beach Resorts is the perfect place! It is located just steps from the pristine
beach with beautiful rooms, lush tropical gardens, sparkling pools and
the friendliest staff on the island!

For hotel reservations or surrounding area information please visit us
online at www.tropicalbeachresorts.com or call us toll-free at
1-800-235-3493.

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sara Sea Circle
Siesta Key, Sarasota FL 34242
941-349-3330
800-235-3493

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Renew your vows on Siesta Key this Valentine’s Day

Register today to “Say I Do Again” while renewing your vows on Siesta Key… The #1 Beach in America!

Siest-Key-Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

Romance is in the air…. Whether you are a newlywed or have been married for decades, its the perfect time to let your special spouse know they’re the one that makes your heart skip a beat! Renew your wedding vows on Valentine’s Day with your toes in the beautiful white sands of Siesta Key! This annual event, held by Sarasota County Parks and Recreations, attracts more previously married couples renewing their love every year. There will be music, giveaways and beach full of happiness and love. Experience the beach wedding you never had or relive the memories! You don’t want to miss out on this romantic experience on such a special occasion.

MUST REGISTER TODAY! Registration can be completed online at parksonline.scgov.net or by calling 941-861-9930. Registration ends Monday, Feb. 10 and there is no on-site registration. The cost is $5 per couple. If you can’t make it this year, you can always plan for next Valentine’s Day or take a peek at the expected 500 couples attending the event on the beach!
The ceremonies will start at 6pm this February 14, 2014.
948 Beach Road, Siesta Key

For local information on Siesta Key hotels contact:

Tropical Beach Resorts
6717 Sara Sea Circle
Siesta Key Sarasota Fl 34242
1-800-235-3493
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

 

 

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The New Year Resolution you must keep!

Make time to relax and take care of you!

Make time to relax and take care of you!

The New Year Resolution you must keep is to do something for yourself and relax!

As we say goodbye to 2013 and 2014 begins, that New Year Resolution is raised. What are you resolving to do this year? Lose weight? Quitting smoking? Be more organized? How about something that you will actually keep? Resolve to make time for yourself and actually relaxing while doing so.

We live in such a busy world where our lifestyles always feel rushed and like there’s never time to take care of ourselves. Here at Tropical Beach Resorts, we want to help you find that time in your busy life where you can just take a time-out, put away all the mobile devices and make time to relax.

Trips to the beach can be as easy and relaxing as you make them, but we go the extra step to make it effortless. From the time you book your reservation to the time you check out, the staff at Tropical Beach Resorts is here to assist you with any vacation needs. From booking dinner reservations, grocery delivery, to daily housekeeping, beach services, and help with transportation around the island, we have you covered. Our local knowledgeable staff has all the best recommendations and truly cares about you and making your precious vacation time here in Siesta Key the absolute best that it can be.

So sit back on your beach lounger, grab something cold and refreshing to drink and take in some beautiful, Siesta Key sunshine.  Siesta Key is truly a magical place and we hope that you find that special peace when you come and visit. Dig your toes into the powdery, sugar-like sand and breathe in the salty, Gulf air. Let all your cares float away. It’ll make for a healthier, happier you in 2014.

Happy New Year from all of us at Tropical Beach Resorts!!

6717 Sarasea Circle
Sarasota, FL 34242
941-349-3330
www.tropicalbeachresorts.com

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