This article is part of a series called “Detours" designed to take you a little off the beaten path from the beaches and attractions of St. Pete/Clearwater, to discover other, lesser-known local favorites like family-run stores, unique galleries, and tantalizing restaurants. Read on and take a Detour into authentic St. Petersburg and Clearwater, Florida!
Real Old Florida Charm at The Getaway
With its two spacious tiki bars and mélange of wooden docks and decks, pavers and palm trees, The Getaway has injected much-needed vitality into a long-neglected stretch of waterfront highway on the northeastern edge of St Petersburg.
In less than two years, The Getaway has established itself as a popular urban oasis among locals and visitors alike. The 1-acre complex, which overlooks picturesque Old Tampa Bay, is easily accessible by car — with ample parking — and has spaces to dock 30 boats.
A Caribbean Oasis in the Heart of St. Pete Florida
A creaky old bar called the Banana Boat preceded The Getaway. That place used the Bay-facing land as a parking lot. “We felt like it was the reverse of the way it should be,” says Dave Burton, one of The Getaway’s owners.
It took the partners a full year to develop the scrubby sandlot and rundown building into “the kind of place we love to go in the Caribbean and Florida keys,” Dave says. “We gave it a resort feel, so that people could feel as if they were escaping, even if it was for a quick meal 10 minutes away from home.”
Starting as primarily a happy hour spot with food trucks, The Getaway has added features, most recently a kids play area and a kitchen built from repurposed shipping containers. The restaurant features Caribbean-influenced fare, including a raw bar and smoked offerings along with sandwiches and burgers.
Brightly colored wooden beach chairs, tables and umbrellas fleck the grounds, inviting guests to kick back, sip a libation and have a relaxed chat while gazing out over the water. Those looking for a more boisterous time congregate under the thatched roofs of the tiki bars.
The Getaway Events and Nearby Happenings
On select weekend nights, The Getaway hosts some of Tampa Bay’s best bands in an outdoor-concert setting. These free events have enhanced the place’s growing reputation as one of Tampa Bay’s top multi-faceted entertainment/party attractions.
13090 Gandy Blvd. N.
Mon-Thurs.: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Fri.-Sun: 11 am to midnight
While you’re in the neighborhood, check out these other local gems:
Located next door to The Getaway, I.C. Sharks is a combination tiki bar, seafood market, bait-and-tackle shop and boat rental.
13040 Gandy Blvd. N., St. Petersburg, 727-498-8568
Situated in The Getaway complex, this shop specializes in stand-up paddle boarding — lessons, rentals, adventure tours, fitness and events. 13090 Gandy Blvd. N., St. Petersburg, 813-598-1634.
This been-there-forever place offers no-frills, classic old Florida dining, specializing in steamed blue crabs and smoked mullet. Hearty eaters will appreciate their all-you-can-eat specials. 11400 Gandy Blvd., 727-576-7813