Have a Duma Key day and travel to Stephen King’s Sarasota with this guide to dining, eating, sleeping and playing on Florida’s gulf coast.
Duma Key is Stephen King’s first Florida-based novel about a fictional island near Sarasota, Fla. King, a seasonal Sarasota resident, includes many area businesses and tourist attractions in his latest thriller. King fans traveling to Sarasota can have a Duma Key day by experiencing some of the locations the book’s protagonist Edgar Freemantle visits.
Duma Key Day Travel Guide to Stephen King’s Sarasota: Dining
Casey Key Fish House: Fresh seafood and tropical libations are served at this casual spot. Chill out in the tiki bar for an Old Florida experience. (801 Blackburn Point Road, Osprey, telephone: (941) 966-1901)
Morton’s Gourmet Market: In Duma Key, Edgar’s groceries are purchased from this market. Though not a restaurant, Morton’s is the place to be seen grocery shopping in Sarasota. Pre-made dishes can be picked up for gourmet meals to be enjoyed on the beach. The original Morton’s is located in Southside Village. (1924 S. Osprey Avenue, Sarasota, telephone: (941) 955-9856)
Ophelia’s on the Bay: Romance and culinary artistry collide on Siesta Key’s waterfront creating exquisite entrees and divine desserts for the palate. Reservations suggested. (9105 Midnight Pass Road, Sarasota, telephone: (941) 349-2212)
Duma Key Day Travel Guide to Stephen King’s Sarasota: What to See
Casey Key Road: Access Casey Key from the north at Blackburn Point Road to drive over the old-style 1920s swing bridge. The curves of Casey Key Road wind between the Gulf of Mexico’s aquamarine waters and the posh island estates.
Ringling Museum of Art (formerly known as the John & Mable Ringling Museum of Art): A visit to Sarasota isn’t complete without a visit to the winter estate of the circus magnet. Browse through the 21 galleries ranging from European classics to contemporary American pieces. While touring the Ringling Museum of Art, wear a beret like Edgar. (5401 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota, telephone: (941) 359-5700)
Palm Avenue Art Galleries: While Duma Key’s Scoto Gallery isn’t found here, Palm Avenue is the “artsy side” of downtown Sarasota (mentioned on page 92) for its collection of art galleries. The first Friday of each month, Palm Avenue opens its doors and invites visitors to stroll through galleries, sip wine and enjoy live musical performances.
Selby Public Library: This two-story downtown library is architecturally beautiful inside and out. Check out the tropical fish aquarium in the entrance way to the children’s section. (1331 First Street, Sarasota)
Duma Key Day Travel Guide to Stephen King’s Sarasota: Where to Stay
The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota: Edgar’s family and friends enjoy the luxurious accommodations of this downtown resort during his art show and it’s the location of a special reunion for Edgar. But does life end up happily ever after on Duma Key? [Note: For those who read Duma Key, Room 847 does not exist at this Ritz.] (1111 Ritz-Carlton Drive, Sarasota, telephone: (941) 309-2000)
Duma Key’s storyline shouldn’t scare off potential Sarasota visitors but rather pique their curiosity.
Duma Key: A Novel, by Stephen King
Hardback: 607 pages
Publisher: Scribner (January 22, 2008)
Author’s note: This article originally appeared on Suite101 in 2008.