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BEST OF BROADWAY

STRAZ Center

If you love Broadway musicals, the STRAZ Center is just the ticket. This extraordinary 335,000 square foot performance center stages some of Broadway’s greatest hits Including Cabaret, Wicked, An American In Paris, and other Tony Award-winners, as well as grand opera and a variety of concerts, performances and events. With five halls, three restaurants, a coffee shop and the Patel Conservatory, it’s the second largest performing arts  center in the U.S. Find it at 1010 N.W. C. MacInnes Place, Tampa. Info 813-229-7827

 

 

BEST Rib Eye

Bascom’s Chop House

It’s hard not to love everything on Bascom’s menu. The seafood which is delivered daily and beautifully prepared, is always top drawer and the center cut prime chops are as good as they get.

 

But it’s the glorious, 16 oz bone-in Ribeye that has us hooked. Hand cut from Certified Angus midwestern grain-fed steer, this rich, well marbled steak is served charred outside with an intense, rich steak flavor that’s hard to find. If you like great steak, put this one on your bucket list! Find it at 3665 Ulmerton Rd., Clearwater. 727-573-3363

 

BEST RESORT FOR AGES 2 -12

Legoland

If there’s anything that makes you long to be a kid again, it’s this totally awesome 150-acre interactive theme park specifically designed for kids 2 -12 years old.

 

With more than 50 unique rides, 10 theme zones and all kinds of really cool attractions, it is the absolute bomb! Lots of special events here, too. FYI: The water ride, “Quest For Chi” is an absolute  blast!  Find it at 1 Legoland Way in Winter Haven. 877-350-5346

 

 

BEST ATTRACTIONS DEAL

Tampa Bay City Pass

With the Tampa Bay City Pass, you can save a whopping 53% off combined admission to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay along with four additional attractions in the Tampa Bay area including The Florida Aquarium, Lowry Park Zoo, Clearwater Marina Aquarium (home to Winter, star of the  popular Dolphin Tale movies) and your choice of either the Museum Of Science and Industry (MOSI) or the Chihuly Collection.

 

City Pass Booklets are valid for nine consecutive days beginning with the first day of use. Such a deal!

 

 

Best French Restaurant
La Cuisine

Located at the heart of Ocala’s beautiful and vibrant historic downtown, come indulge yourself with our award-winning menu and dedicated service in a unique French-Bistro atmosphere.

 

Owners operated since 2009, La Cuisine in Ocala has all the old-world charm of any romantic hideaway in Paris. Patrice and Elodie are here to welcome you! In line with the French traditional way of cooking, every dish is made from carefully selected high quality fresh products and ingredients, prepared in-house and cooked to perfection with a modern twist. Whether it is a business dinner, family brunch or a romantic evening for two, La Cuisine is definitely worth a closer look.

 

We are open Tuesday through Sunday starting at 5pm and Sunday Brunch 11am to 2pm (closed for lunch and Mondays).

 

(352) 433-2570.48 SW 1st Ave, Ocala, FL 34471

Across from the Marion Movie Theatre

 

 

 

BEST CIGAR EMPORIUM

Davidoff Of Geneva

With 5,000 square feet of humidified space, this smoking-hot cigar emporium showcases a unique collection of premium cigars, must-have accessories  and curated pieces.

 

But what really puts it over the top are the added amenities which include multiple indoor-and-out smoking lounges, private lockers and  an elegant full service bar with top shelf libations. Yowza! Find it at the Metwest International Shopping Center, 4142 Boy Scout Blvd. near Tampa’s International Mall and Airport.   Info: 813-513-7560

 

BEST SUSHI WITH A VIEW

Jackson’s Bistro Bar & Sushi

Amazing sushi, fantastic water views and  a large outdoor dining patio/ tiki bar make this happening harbor front spot the perfect place to click your chopsticks and revel in an extensive lineup of fresh sashimi, sushi appetizers and all kinds of signature specialty rolls.

 

Some of our favorites: the Maine Lobster Tempura Roll with eel sauce and spicy mayo along with the Happy Sumo Roll (blue crab, spicy tuna, cream cheese & cucumber topped with eel and tempura chips – yum!). There are plenty of American options, as well, including succulent Point Judith Calamari Rings with sweet chili spicy mayo and some of the biggest and tastiest coconut shrimp on the planet. Find it at 601 S Harbour Island Blvd., Tampa. Info: 813-277-0112

 

 

Best Southern Cooking
Ivy On The Square
Southern Cooking At Its Best

Marjorie”Mimi” Hale and her family are the epitomy of “Southern Hospitality.” Owner of the hip Ivy On The Square in Ocala and the the landmark Ivy House Restaurant & Catering in Williston, Mimi is renowned for her delicious, yet simple meals, most of which are created from cherished family recipes.

 

Mimi’s signature Baked Krispy Chicken tops the list of house favorites which includes other southern specialties like

Fried Green Tomatoes, Cheese Fritters and BBQ Shrimp & Grits. There’s also a wide selection of seafood and steak dishes along with an extensive gluten-free menu. Happy Hour is 2-4-1 drinks every Weds - Sat from 3 - 7pm as well as

Late Night Tapas & Cocktails on Fri & Sat from 9 - 11pm. In Ocala and in Wiliston at 106 NW Mail St. (352-528-5410).

 

 

Classic Burger
Shulas

If you love Don Shula’s famous steaks, you’ll really flip over his fresh, juicy char grilled burgers. The legendary NFL Coach raises the bar with a big beefy patty that is always made fresh from his own signature blend of Premium Black Angus Chuck, Short Rib and brisket, perfectly seasoned and served with

lettuce, tomatoe, pickle and your choice of cheese on a brioche style bun.

 

Once you’ve tackled one of these bad boys, you’ll never suffer another “Mac-Attack” again. At the Hilton Univeristy of Florida Conference Center, 1714 SW 34th St., Gainesville (305-664-2321). Info:

 

 

Best Wild Hang
Zoo Tampa
Featured On Animal Planet Voted the #1 Family Friendly Zoo in the US, this 65 acre lush tropical habitat is home to more than 1300 resident animals and offers lots of opportunities to get up close and personal with giraffes, rhinos, exotic birds, stingrays and more. The emphasis here is on endangered and vulnerable species as well as on conservation and education. Love manatees?

 

At the David A. Straz Jr. Manatee Hospital, the Zoo’s veterinary and animal-care staff treat sick, injured and orphaned manatees before returning them to the wild after rehabilitation. The Zoo also cares for the most diverse group of Florida wildlife anywhere, and has won numerous awards for animal preservation. There’s also a cool splash pad for kids, rides and play areas.

 

Lowry Park, 1101 W Sligh Ave. Tampa, Fl 33604

Daily 9:30 am - 5 pm | 813-9358552

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