I was a bit dubious pulling up to the grand entrance of the Ritz Carlton Sarasota. Everyone seemed to be elegant- donning heels and suits, emerging from shiny Benzes. I was immediately put at ease, however, as the friendly staff greeted our boys with nothing but warmth. ( Despite our lack of seer sucker and bow ties!)
They were never bored with an seemingly endless stream of games: life-size chess and checkers, pool, air hockey, ping pong…
Andy and Brady took a peaceful kayak ride down the channel. (The Ritz also had paddle boards.)
Colby successfully caught a big catfish off the deck with poles the hotel provided.
Our family enjoyed our amazing balcony view.
And lost our worries in the sunsets.
We took full advantage of the Ritz’s private beach club*,where a friendly lollipop toting staff was always there to greet us.
The pool, which seemed to be constantly abuzz with excitement, provided hours of fun and a little sunburn on the side.
There were lemon water stations and aloe vera by the pump. Poolside lunch, and umbrellas to offer shade. Someone was always coming by to refresh your ice or primp your head pillow.
The water was perfectly turquoise and there were boogie boards for little boys to borrow.
We came back to our rooms happily exhausted, to chocolates on our pillows and more treasure box gifts.
Welcome glasses of champagne
Copies of the latest Afar in the room,
Free morning ice coffee,
A bottle of my husband’s favorite wine, and a concierge who got us in front of a 30 person waitlist at a nearby restaurant.
If the Ritz Carlton wasn’t wonderful enough already, it’s location made it perfect.
A gorgeous palm tree lined bridge for jogging or pushing strollers, a little downtown teeming with local shops and restaurants, and a marina filled with boats to ogle at.
Will we be back? With or without the kids the answer is simply, “Of course.”
Stay: Ritz Carlton Sarasota
*The beach club is a quick 3 mile drive, with valet provided as well as luxurious locker rooms. There is also a free hourly shuttle provided by the hotel.
In addition to eating at the hotel here are some local (kid friendly) recommendations:
Breakfast: First Watch
Dessert: Settimi’s Gelato