Insider Shopping for Antiques
Though Sarasota has no designated antiques district, fine shops and auction houses pepper the downtown area and extend from Anna Maria Island to Englewood. Dealers in our community have access to exceptional estates and an extraordinary base of retirees who’ve amassed collections of fine furniture, art and jewelry. Indeed, the thrill of the hunt in Sarasota applies to them as much as their customers. And, thanks to sophisticated Internet marketing to supplement local sales, the treasures gracing these pages may very well reach the far corners of the globe.
Just Desserts Twenty-first-century lifestyle changes have lessened demand for impeccable fine china and crystal, which makes this dessert set for 12 ($1,400) an incredible buy. Tiffany commissioned the set in France in 1867, and original Tiffany-inscribed paper liners separate each plate. Sarasota Antiques, 539 S. Washington Blvd., Sarasota (941) 809-2388.
Dreamy Deco The glamour of streamlined Art Deco style never fades, and this knockout late-1920s sideboard replete with inlaid marquetry would make a brilliant statement in rooms decorated in eclectic style ($1,800). Blue Moon Antiques, 134 S. Pineapple Ave., Sarasota (941) 365-0978.
Seats of Power Fashioned in the style influenced by Napoleon I, these antique Regency chairs (c.1800) with luxurious striped silk fabric are among the treasures to unearth at a shop devoted to the best of international decorative arts, both old and new ($9,000 the pair). Marianne E, 60 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota (941) 373-1260.
Woven Legacy This rare Persian Serapi carpet (c. 1800–1840), woven in the Heriz area, shows the influence of earlier Armenian dragon rugs (price on request). Art to Walk On, 16 and 18 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota (941) 951-5454.
Perfect Pitch This oversized pair of hand-wrought sterling silver water pitchers ($9,250 the pair) are the functional art of Taxco, Mexico-based superstar Emilia Castillo, daughter of renowned silversmith Antonio Castillo. Crissy Galleries, 640 S. Washington Blvd., Sarasota (941) 957-1110.
Mad for Ming Asian antiques here attract tourists and residents alike, with wonderful buys on Ming Dynasty ceramic vases of impeccable pedigree from the late 1600s (from $1,480). Coco Palm Gallery, 1255 N. Palm Ave., Sarasota (941) 955-1122.
Magnificent Obsession Pablo Picasso’s fascination with bulls and Minotaurs makes this 1960s signed original 17-inch Madoura ceramic charger with engraved bull fighters all the more significant to collectors ($13,000). Burke Antiques, 12 S. Palm Ave., Sarasota (941) 952-0042.