Tampa has recently been named as one of the top ten best cities for business travelers in the US, according to a study by On Call International. That's no surprise - Tampa certainly has a lot to offer for travelers of all kinds! If you've come to the Bay area solo for work and are looking for the best places to hang out, do some people watching & grab a meal or snack, read on...
Best Places to Dine Solo When Traveling to Tampa
Downtown Tampa has a wide range of options for a business person in town dining solo. Consider the beautiful Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina - it's got some of the best views and amenities in the area, such as the full-service Spa Waterside, and the most happening rooftop pool and bar this side of South Beach. The Waterside also has several delightful and affordable dining options for the solo traveler, such as their Waterside Grill, offering fresh local seafood, prime steaks, and artisanal cocktails; and Champions Sports Bar & Grille, one of the most popular places in town to watch the big game and grab ginormous wings. Additional dining options include a breakfast buffet, Continental breakfast, or a grab and go breakfast; you can also enjoy lunch, dinner, and Fresh Bites delivered right to your room. Situated on Tampa's beautiful Riverwalk, you will find one of the many Pirate Water Taxi docks next door at the Tampa Bay History Center, where you can hop aboard and head up the river to local favorite dining spots like Ulele and Rick's on the River. Or grab the Cross Bay Ferry at the Tampa Dock next to the Marriott and head over to dine in St. Petersburg at the famous Vinoy Hotel.
*Nearby Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina restaurants include The Sail Pavilion at the Tampa Convention Center and the Columbia Cafe, both within walking distance - great places to people watch on the waterfront!
Aloft Tampa is also very popular with both business travelers and tourists. Located in a prime downtown area right on the Tampa Riverwalk, guests can enjoy Aloft's super hip W XYZ Bar, featuring locally influenced appetizers. then take a stroll along the river to Malio's, a world-class steakhouse with an interesting history spanning more than 50 years. Malio's opened in its original South Tampa location in 1969 - and rumor has it Elvis and Frank Sinatra once dined there!
*Nearby restaurants perfect for solo dining include Paninoteca and Taco Bus Downtown. Both located on Franklin Street, one serves Mediterranean, the other authentic street Mexican. Franklin Street is another energetic spot to sit, relax, and watch the world go by.
As a business traveler in Downtown Tampa, you have several options, some of them free, for transportation along the downtown corridor. You can ride The Downtowner, a FREE on-demand electric car service running through downtown and the Channel District out to the University of Tampa until 11 pm each night. Or you can take the TECO Line Streetcar System for a small fee.
The Rocky Point area is totally worth checking out as well - close to TIA, and you can enjoy beautiful bay views all around. The Bay Harbor Hotel in Tampa is located right on the water and features lush tropical surroundings, a poolside bar, gorgeous sunsets, and the hip Beach Bar & Restaurant. Located next to the hotel, Beach Bar & Restaurant is a 20,000 sq. ft. contemporary casual indoor/outdoor concept serving fresh seafood, utilizing local ingredients to create American classic dishes. The views make dining solo at the Beach Bar - whether it is for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a late night bite - one of the areas best!
*Nearby restaurants include Bahama Breeze and Oystercatchers - with the more casual Breeze offering Caribbean-inspired fare and Oystercatcher's serving an upscale seafood experience in a comfortable modern space.
The Bay area offers visitors or business travelers tons of great choices for dining solo. Are you a frequent visitor to the area? We invite you to share your favorite places to dine below!
Cover photo courtesy of Beach Bar & Restaurant.