Owner of Bartow’s famed Wonder House pins hopes on zoning change

During its heyday, the Wonder House attracted curiosity seekers willing to pay a small admission to view up close a true one-of-a-kind residence considered an architectural marvel. A Bartow treasure, it featured inventive, modern conveniences such as hollow columns that collected rainwater from the roof. The water was piped through walls, feeding plants that were […]

St. Petersburg’s newest hotel opens with craft beers, cocktails and Cozy Corners

Last spring, Ryan Tarrant applied for a job with the new Hyatt Place nearing completion in downtown St. Petersburg. Among the questions an interviewer asked:What does this hotel need to succeed?”I said, you’ve got to be involved with the arts,” Tarrant recalls. “You have to have craft beers. You have to have craft cocktails because […]

$200 million later, why are St. Pete’s poor black neighborhoods worse off?

The predominantly black, high-poverty neighborhoods south of Central Avenue have long attracted politicians courting voters with plans to turn them around.Improving the neighborhoods he dubbed Midtown was key to former Mayor Rick Baker’s vision in 2001 of a “Seamless City” where persistent racial and economic inequities would melt away. Thirteen years later, newly elected Mayor […]