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Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant and Pub

North Longboat Key     diamond_spacer      (941) 383-2391


 Relax and enjoy a taste of “Real Florida” overlooking picturesque Sarasota Bay. Known just as much for its outdoor dining under the ancient Buttonwood trees or on the covered open-air deck as it is for serving the freshest Florida seafood available and produce from their own organic and hydroponic farm. The Mar Vista was part of an original land grant of the island’s first settler, back in 1885. A perfectly positioned haven for all watercraft users, the Mar Vista has a private 14 slip dock with a deep draw for larger vessels making it easy for hungry boaters, kayaks or really any type of watercraft enthusiasts to Dock and Dine at ICW #39.

mar mar left top   mar right top

Lunch and dinner is served under the trees, on the shaded deck or inside the restored bait shop reminiscent of the early 1900’s. Mar Vista is the gem of Longboat Key, rich in history and character. Leave a dollar bill on the wall to ensure
your return visit. 

Mar visa Crab
Steamed Crab Pot
Seasonal: Oct.15th until May 15th

Farm to fork, tide to table, sustainable, heritage, and locally sourced menu items are what sets Mar Vista apart from other restaurants in this area. Although it is touted as a “Classic Dive” the Mar Vista was recognized as One of the Top 10 Places to Meet a Millionaire, MaryLou Whitney, USA Today Newspaper, June 18, 2002. Ever changing Daily Features include items like Mount Cook King Salmon, the highest scoring farm raised Salmon by the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch Program

Nearby Florida Secrets:

The Sandbar Restaurant

Beach House Restaurant

 

A Real Florida experience with fresh Florida seafood, their own farm’s produce picked and plated same day and sustainable menu items.
Full bar.

Mar Vista Dock 2

(941) 383-2391

760 Broadway Street
Longboat Key, Florida 34228
See Map Below

Arrive by Land or Sea
ICW Channel Marker 39



 
History of The Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant and Pub

Once the dock for supply steamers bringing dry goods to the key and taking seafood and produce to points north, Mar Vista welcomes diners to Intracoastal Mile Marker #39 for waterfront dining on expertly prepared, freshly caught seafood, salads with same day picked and plated produce from the restaurants farm, and steaks, burgers and locally sourced wild boar. The menus are accompanied by a full bar and a selection of fine wines including the company’s signature brand, Lola. 

Early developer and major Longboat Key landowner Rufus Jordan used a block making machine in building and overseeing the construction of a number of early residences in his subdivision on the north end of the island beginning in about 1912 and a number of buildings were soon about thereafter constructed utilizing rusticated stone blocks made on or near the construction site by himself or local labor. It is believed that Rufus Jordan constructed all but one of the rusticated concrete block historic structures, the Walters/Holt House, that survived within the original area of Longbeach.

The Rufus and Annie Jordan House, “Mar Vista”, is one of the twelve oldest surviving structures on Longboat Key. Although the house has received some modifications over time, it continues to maintain its historical significance. The restaurant and house retain its original integrity of location, materials, feeling and association to a high degree. 

A hurricane struck the west coast of Florida and Longboat Key in 1921. The docks and most of the island’s dwellings were destroyed but Mar Vista and the Jordan house stood intact.

Eventually Mar Vista was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Sipes, relatives of the Jordans, in 1940. In 1942, the Sipes turned the house into five rental apartments.

The property was sold in 1947 to their business partners, Captain Don Nimmo and Ray Smith. They built the Pub Cocktail Lounge(on the site of MarVista restaurant) and designated it as a fish camp, selling bait, tackle, and beer. Hartig said it was probable that the Jordan House was used for lodgings for out of town fisherman.

Charlotte and Edward Sibole bought the property in 1950. They added a room to the rear building, The Pub, and relocated the bait shop. They continued to lease apartments in the Jordan House. It soon became one of the most popular restaurants and watering holes on the Key.

The former Jordan House continued to be used as apartments until the 1980’s when the MarVista Corporation, with Ed Chiles as owner, bought the property.

Mr. Chiles has retained much of the original charm of the property and buildings to keep in tradition with the Old Florida style. To this day, it is one of the favorite spots for locals to wind down the day and catch up on neighborhood news.

Since Chiles purchased the property he has made improvements including seating under the ancient Buttonwood trees, adding a solid gazebo style deck covering, and renovating the bathrooms and bar area. Further remodeling plans include adding a sushi bar in addition to second story deck seating overlooking beautiful Sarasota Bay, making the view from this island treasure even more spectacular.


Note: Buttonwood Trees were used by Indians to cook with. It was a favorite fuel for smoking fish making an excellent firewood emitting very little smoke while burning. The Indians would place wet palm fronds over the holes and place the fish or game on top of the fronds. The horizontal limbs allowed for a semi flat cooking surface. These trees are over 100 years old and still stand tall providing shade for diners at the restaurant.



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