Year 1982: I, a native Virginian, had been to and seen ocean resorts from Athens to Luzon. My son had just joined the faculty of the University of South Florida. My wife and I went to visit him there. Figuring it would be nice to have a beach condo in Florida for future visits, I got a real estate agent to show me the small, secluded ones. At this one, it was “laid back” in time. I saw that it’s most important occupants were a pair of herons which would visit any fellow citizen whenever a door was left open. They were treated as royalty because they ruled the place, where all occupants were “family.” If you were lucky at night time a mysteriously distant peacock would sing you to sleep.
Ah, 1953! It was a great year. Gen. Eisenhower was inaugurated as President, with Nixon as V.P. Postage stamps were 3 cents. No computers and e-mail. Some things, though, remain the same. The sign at G.B’s front hasn’t changed much since the hotel/motel was built in 1953, except for being “lit up.” The place is officially designated as “Historic” because it was one of the very few remaining properties built simply as a small beachfront hotel. Though of the past, G.B. is modern, with all the electronics, etc.
930 Ben Franklin Drive, Sarasota. A short walk down the street and you’re in government protected wildlife parkland reserved for native flora and fauna. Back to 930. There, the beautiful beach with its fine, white sand lights up at sunup. Sundown is glorious, directly across the water. The Lord made this place for you and me. God, may it last forever!
GULF BEACH CONDO HOTEL
MATHEW J. BOWYER CREATIVE WRITING
MEMBER: AUTHORS GUILD & AMERICAN PHILATELIC SOCIETY
Being near the water is happiness for me. In 1983, I purchased a unit at Gulf Beach Resort Motel in a property exchange offered by my realtor in Lakeland, FL. Since then, many relatives and friends of mine from New York to CA have enjoyed visiting the resort for our family parties, weddings, and simple beach get-togethers.
While serving on the board of directors for many years, I have observed the large “family” of owners strive to improve the historic motel and work diligently to hold the place together while all around us, resorts were being razed. During 2003, it was a struggle to gain Historic Designation while confronted with developers who wanted to tear it down. Gulf Beach Resort was the first motel built on Lido Key in 1949-50, and is the last one standing today.
The association’s determination to keeping a modest-priced condo-hotel right on the water of elite Lido Key offers the average-income clientele a beach place for vacations — and making fabulous memories of sunsets, surf, and fun.
My family and I love being at GBR, and many of our friends enjoy meeting us there for beach parties — for 29 years and counting. I will continue to upgrade my unit and enjoy looking down the beach from the common balcony. And it never ceases to make me happy when somebody tells me they had a good time while renting my unit.
Ronell (Ronni) Jones
The Sarasota Ski-A-Rees water ski team continue to perform from February to May at City Island on Sarasota Bay.
The free performances are open to the public and are held Sundays at 2:00 pm.
The team began in 1957, and now has about 50 members ages 6 to 75. The community supports this event with business and local residents helping with equipment from jump ramps to wardrobe. The Sarasota Marine Patrol handles safety issues.
When the team began it was more of an amateur event and now has grown to high skill talent performing four-tier pyramids.
Athletes enter and often win championship titles at the state, southern regional and national levels.
Mark your calendars for Sundays and take advantage of this fun filled family entertainment. You won’t be disappointed!
While you are in the area, check out Gulf Beach Resort Motel on Lido Key. Gulf Beach offers great rates and a family friendly environment. We are located directly on the beach of Gulf of Mexico and ten minutes from City Island.
Visit us on the web,
The Gulf Beach Resort Motel is pleased to announce that all rooms now have access to free Wi-Fi hi-speed internet access. Now you can stay connected while you get away from it all – just ask for your complimentary access code when you check in.
Our free wireless internet connection allows you to check your email or surf the web from anywhere on our property from your room to the beach!
Scenic Wonders and Fun Activities abound on Lido Beach, St. Armands Circle, Sarasota, Longboat Key and surrounding areas!
Fine Shopping and Dining – Walk to St. Armands Circle
John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art
Fishing, Hiking, Swimming
Golf, Tennis, Mini-Golf
Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
Main Street shopping and dining
Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
Mote Marine Aquarium
Myakka River State Park Wildlife & Nature Tours
Shop Prime Outlets – Ellenton
Red Barn Flea Market – Bradenton
Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo
Legoland Florida Park & Water Park – Winter Haven
The Florida Aquarium – Tampa
Busch Gardens Africa – Tampa
SeaWorld Adventure Park – Orlando
Universal Orlando Resort
Walt Disney World – Orlando
Anna Maria Island
For a complete list of area attractions and activities please visit www.visitsarasota.org/events
“We really enjoyed our stay. The weather and beach were great! The unit is fixed up so cute and has everything in it that we needed. The staff was so helpful and friendly. It was like being around family. We hope to be back next year!”
“We really enjoyed our stay. Very cozy and the location is just great. It was a perfect stay!”