It’s not one of South Florida’s sexiest destinations, but Sarasota has been a favorite of snowbirds and Florida residents for that very reason. It has exquisite beaches and enough good food and entertainment to keep you busy for a week or two, but without the hustle of Orlando or South Beach. It’s an hour south of Tampa and about three hours northeast of Miami, just about mid-peninsula on the Gulf of Mexico. Couples come to stay in the resort hotels and enjoy the artistic treasures such as Barnum & Bailey circusmeister John Ringling’s palace, the Cá d’ZanCá d’Zan, and his stunning collection of old masters. Families flock to the beachside condos of Siesta Key to bake on the pristine white sand, chow down beach food and mix with locals and snowbirds in the dozens of boutiques around St. Armands Circle.