Image Alt

Pursuit of it All

Manasota Key Resort: Your Ultimate Retreat on Florida’s Gulf Coast

Nestled between the lively cities of Sarasota and Venice lies the hidden gem of Manasota Key, an 11-mile barrier island graced by the beauty of Florida’s Gulf Coast. Positioned between the breathtaking Gulf of Mexico and the lush mangrove forests of Lemon Bay, it’s a serene haven waiting to be discovered.

Never heard of Manasota Key? Neither had I!

This area embodies a leisurely, unspoiled charm that often escapes the tourist radar. It’s the quintessential Florida island escape, tailor-made for folks yearning for tranquility and adventure.

My husband and I were invited to this lovely paradise by our sister and brother-in-law, Misty and Jeff, for a long weekend getaway at Manasota Key Resort. It’s hard to believe, but in all the years we’ve known each other, we’d never actually had the chance to spend time together away from our bustling families.

Manasota Key Resort, a Dreamy Paradise Getaway

In all honesty, I didn’t know what to expect from the resort. My husband and I had not done a ton of research prior to our trip because work deadlines had been demanding. Essentially, we packed some bags, crossed our fingers and boarded the plane. But to say we were impressed would be an understatement!

We stayed in Building 2, Room 111, just a few steps away from a gorgeous Gulf of Mexico view off of the private resort beach. We had a two bedroom suite with a kitchenette that you could tell had been recently redecorated in what I can only describe as an “upscale beach vibe.” (Don’t get me started about the wood plank walls and molding. I must have 15 pictures in my camera roll of them alone. So stunning!) Immediately outside of our room was the ocean and a cabana with a host of amenities including hammocks, lounge chairs, outdoor games, a pool and even a beach bar!


Manasota Key Resort Accommodations


We spent our mornings together sipping coffee, listening to the waves and spending quality time with one another. Anyone who has children or a demanding job (or both!) can appreciate what a rare, beautiful and special opportunity that is.

And as happy as we were with our room accommodations, we were even more in love with the property and area itself. Manasota Key Resort is a five-acre natural sanctuary that has beauty around every corner. It was evident that a tremendous amount of thought and care had been put into the design of the resort, you literally wanted for nothing. And most importantly, the staff was warm and friendly and the resort areas were pristine.

I’m pretty sure we spent more time in the outside spaces then inside spaces. (It was just so beautiful!)

Florida's Manasota Key Resort Amenities

Florida's Manasota Key Resort Bikes for Rent

Some of my favorite things, in no particular order included:

  • Lemon Bay Market (food, shopping, drinks, relaxation)
  • Two words: yard games (golf, corn hole, ping pong, you name it!)
  • Water sport opportunities (paddle boards, kayaks, canoes)
  • A sport court (pickle ball, tennis, foursquare and even hopscotch)
  • Outdoor grilling area that even included a pizza oven 
  • Lovely lending library 
  • Guest bikes
  • The private beach

Florida's Manasota Key Resort Lemon Bay Market

Of course they had all sorts of other amenities as well including fishing docks, pools, a laundry room and fitness studio. We wanted for nothing, honestly. I personally adored being able to walk over to the market area order a mimosa or glass of wine and sit by the fire pit at night. (Or eat breakfast and drink coffee bayside in the silence of the morning!)

Florida's Manasota Key Resort Bay Views
We absolutely loved strolling in the morning sunshine. We walked for miles every morning and we were amazed by the wildlife in the area. From birds to manatees, dolphins to lizards and turtles, there was never a shortage of creatures.

My happiest discovery of the trip was the fact that we found ourselves situated right beside Stump Pass Beach State Park at the south end of Manasota Key. This area tapers to a long, thin tip and has a lovely hiking trail which allows you the option of experiencing both the bay and ocean. For avid seashell collectors like myself, this spot is a dream come true. The angle of the coastline makes it an ideal spot for finding treasures like conchs, tulip shells, and even shark’s teeth. Speaking of which, did you know that Manasota Key is renowned as the “Shark Tooth Capital of the World”? It’s true! The beaches here are rich with ancient shark teeth just waiting to be discovered.

Florida's Stump Pass Beach Park Trails

In my mind, no trip would be complete without visiting local establishments and trying out their best dishes! We had some memorable times out on the town sipping cocktails and eating wonderful food. Manasota Key has a variety of dining options, ranging from casual to fine dining restaurants. We visited The Waverly Restaurant for both dinner and lunch and spent a special evening dining on the back patio of Magnolia’s on the Bay. I highly recommend the Sea Scallops and Shrimp Skewer & Skirt Steak at Magnolia’s and the Smoked Fish Dip and Blue Blitz chips at The Waverly. And although not in the immediate area, if you get a chance to visit Charlotte Harbor, stop into the Waterside Table Restaurant and order a Coastal Buck (aged rum, orgeat, pineapple, spicy ginger) and the Tuna Poke Wontons. You’ll thank me, I promise!

Florida's Manasota Key Food and Drinks

The most anticipated part of each day at the resort was soaking in the breathtaking sunset views. As the sun dips below the horizon in Manasota Key it casts hues of pink, orange, and gold across the sky. Every evening the spectacular vistas never failed to leave us in awe. It was impossible not to stop what you were doing and watch the show.

Florida's Manasota Key Resort Sunset

My husband and I try to take long weekends away as often as possible during the year to both recharge our batteries and spend time alone together. Rarely do we stumble upon a getaway as tranquil and enchanting as our stay at the Manasota Key Resort. It was the perfect blend of beauty, nature and gentle living that our entire group needed. We left that weekend refreshed and excited to plan our next visit!

Blogger. Marketer. Deadline juggler. Flibbertigibbet. A fan of all things glitter and girly, Jen’s passions include gabbing with girlfriends, running marathons, sipping (okay, gulping) cocktails and waxing poetic about the tortured soul of Professor Snape. Rarely found without her nose in a book (or her iPhone), she acknowledges that her level of geekery might not be for everyone. Consider yourself warned. Her ultimate goal in life is to be a professional wanderer of the internet or Amy Poehler’s BFF. (Both totally accomplishable, of course.)

Post a Comment