The new restaurant inside the Embassy Suites is making a conscious effort to involve the Tampa community in its menu, using local businesses like Jamison B, Revolution Ice Cream, Joe & Sons Olive Oils and the Deviled Pig to supply ingredients. Dishes like the crisp skin salmon with farro, Niman Ranch burger with Nueske’s bacon, and sambal chili wings incorporate international flavors, while the beer list is hyper-local — highlighting brews from local breweries like Coppertail, 7venth Sun and 3 Daughters.
Embassy Suites Tampa Downtown Convention Center
513 S. Florida Ave.
Park & Rec
The St. Petersburg favorite is scheduled to make its Tampa debut in June with a two-story adult playground. Menu items are grown-up versions of childhood favorites (pizza, sandwiches and burgers, spiked shakes), plus cocktails like the signature Party Pouch — basically an adult Capri-Sun. Park & Rec will bring the fun, too, like giant Jenga, giant beer pong, retro arcade games and skeeball.
290 S. Meridian Ave.
Kava is hot thanks to its purported mood-lifting, anxiety-busting effects when brewed into a tea. Kava Culture is the latest place to grab a shell (the traditional vessel for serving kava) in Tampa, taking the place of the former Indigo Coffee. Beyond kava, the cafe also serves kratom, coffee, kombucha and a selection of food items like breakfast sandwiches and vegan snacks. Kava Culture is open from 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily and also hosts live music and art events.
514 N. Franklin St.
Gulf Coast Sourdough Sandwich House
The step from bread to sandwich is a logical one, so the minds behind one of Tampa’s biggest bread bakers is converting the front of its baking facility to a retail cafe. Gulf Coast Sourdough surpassed their Kickstarter fundraising goal to support the opening of the shop, which will serve a variety of yet-to-be-announced sandwiches and sides made with the bakery’s famous sourdoughs, red pepper bread, turmeric and black pepper bread, and asiago loaves. The shop is expected to open this summer.
5214 N. Nebraska Ave.
Can’t stop, won’t stop seems to be Armature Works’ 2019 motto. After opening multiple new stalls inside the Heights Public Market, the Euro-American restaurant Oak & Ola and the rooftop bar M.Bird, the seafood restaurant Stones Throw is now opening on Armature Works’ front lawn. So far the restaurant has teased oysters, a raw bar, fresh fish and craft cocktails ahead of its anticipated June opening.
304 W. 7th Ave.
Water Street Tampa update
Sparkman Wharf’s neighbors and visitors have surely noticed the serious construction in and around the plaza. Renovations are currently underway to create 150,000 square feet of new loft-style office space at Sparkman Wharf, along with ground-floor retail space for 10 new yet-to-be-announced tenants. Construction is expected to wrap up next year. Meanwhile, Water Street Tampa became the first neighborhood to achieve the WELL Design & Operations designation under the WELL Community Standard for its implementation of designs and policies that improve residents’ well-being. Water Street initiatives will include wide, walkable sidewalks, water bottle refilling stations, active programming in public spaces and accessible air quality data.
615 Channelside Drive
Hampton Inn + Home2 Suites
The Channel District’s first hotel is set to debut by July 1, when its first guests are slated to arrive. This is Hilton’s first dual-brand property in the Bay area, with a mix of standard Hampton rooms and Home2 suites. For locals, the hotel is also bringing the neighborhood’s first Starbucks location to the hotel’s first floor, with garage parking exclusively for coffee shop customers.
1155 E. Kennedy Blvd.
22nd Street Coffee
Founded out of the back of an Ybor City bakery in the 1960s, 22nd Street Coffee recently opened a coffee shop at the front of their current roastery. The shop is serving up its own blends of drip coffee, plus espresso, cold brew and specialty coffee drinks (like the summer special Loco for Choco Coco with coconut cold brew, chocolate drizzle and homemade coconut whipped cream), plus Cuban pastries, empanadas and devil crabs.
208 N. 22nd St.
Summer concert season is here, and there’s a little something for everyone. For theatre lovers, a live orchestra will accompany Hugh Jackman as he runs through hits from Broadway and films like The Greatest Showman and Les Miserables, while reggaeton fans won’t want to miss Puerto Rican rapper Anuel AA. Fangirls of all ages are in for an epic summer, with Shawn Mendes, Lionel Richie and the newly reunited Jonas Brothers all in town. Finally, Queen makes its long overdue Tampa debut (seriously, the band has never played here) with frontman Adam Lambert in mid-August.
Hugh Jackman – July 5
Jeff Lynne’s ELO – July 7
Anuel AA – July 21
WWE Raw Live – July 22
Shawn Mendes – July 27
Lionel Richie – July 28
Jonas Brothers – August 10
Queen + Adam Lambert – August 18
With the kids out of school for the summer, the Straz Center has plenty of family friendly entertainment options in July and August, like the stage adaptation of the best-selling book The Lightning Thief and Paw Patrol Live. For the grown-ups, Constellations (performed by the Straz’s in-house theater company, the Jobsite Theater) explores the possibilities of decisions made and unmade, while actor John Cusack will stop by for a special screening of the ‘80s classic Say Anything on July 24.
The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical – July 9-14
Constellations by Nick Payne – July 10-August 4
Aerial Dragons: Hypnotica – July 13-14
Say Anything & John Cusack – July 24
A Night in Spain – July 26-28
Paw Patrol Live! Race to the Rescue – July 27-28
Latin Nights – August 15
85 South Show – August 17
The museum will continue celebrating Tampa’s beer-brewing history throughout the summer. “History by the Pint” looks at brewing’s early days in Ybor, the effects of Prohibition and the home-brewing movement through August 11. Kids ages 7 to 11 can take a unique approach to the traditional history lesson with the museum’s weeklong camps. The first uses pirates and explorers to examine Florida’s past, while the second looks at history through the experiences of three different American Girl characters.
History Adventure Camp: Swashbuckling Summer – July 8-12
History Adventure Camp: American Girl – July 22-26
In Tableau and Transformation, the Tampa Museum of Art is highlighting 20th century photos from its permanent collection that push the boundaries of the form in one way or another, from darkroom effects to the composition of the shot. Featured photographers include William Wegman, Eileen Cowin and James Casabere. Opening in August, Robert Rauschenberg: America-Mix 16 will show the museum’s rarely seen collection of the artist’s work in its entirety — 16 photogravures of objects and vignettes Rauschenberg found during his cross-country travels.
Abstract Expressionism: A Social Revolution – through August 11
Echoing Forms: American Abstraction from the Permanent Collection – through August 18
Ancient and Modern Glass from the Permanent Collection – through August 18
Tableau and Transformation: Photography from the Permanent Collection – through October 20
Robert Rauschenberg: America Mix – August 9-January 5
The theatre’s Summer Classics Movie Series is back, and this year it’s with a little audience participation. Fans chose to add Grease to the series’ lineup in the theatre’s online poll, but Tampa Theatre returned the favor by making the screening a sing-along. Later in the summer the theatre hosts its annual BeerFest fundraiser, where guests can sample craft beers and bites from local breweries and restaurants, and a conversation with the award-winning author Colson Whitehead.
Sing-Along Grease – July 7
All That Jazz – July 14
Jurassic Park – July 21
An Evening with Colson Whitehead – July 25
BeerFest 2019: Ferris Brewer’s Day Off – July 27
The Wizard of Oz – July 28
Because of Sam Screening – July 29
WarGames – July 30
The Philadelphia Story – August 4
9 to 5 – August 11
The Shawshank Redemption – August 18
The Silent Clowns – August 25
Casablanca – August 31