Award-winning beaches and a sizzling arts scene make St. Petersburg, Florida, the perfect beach-and-culture getaway. A growing community of glass artists find inspiration in the sparkling ocean and spectacular Gulf sunsets right outside their door. Delve into this magical art form at:
- Chihuly Collection, 400 Beach Drive NE: Fantastical pieces by internationally-acclaimed glass artist Dale Chihuly are showcased in a building specially designed for them by architect Albert Alfonso. Why a permanent Chihuly museum in St. Pete? The artist began visiting the area in the 1980s and returns often for special events. The massive Ruby Red Icicle Chandelier was created especially for the collection. Other popular Chihuly series on display include Nijima Floats, Tumbleweeds, Persians and Ikebana.
- Morean Arts Center, Glass Studio & Hot Shop, 719 Central Avenue: The Chihuly Collection is presented by the Morean Arts Center which also operates a glass studio and shop at its location on Central Ave. Visitors can watch glass blowing demonstrations, purchase glass art created by local artisans, even sign up for glass blowing classes and workshops.
- Duncan McClellan Gallery, 550 24th Street South: Glass artist Duncan McClellan uses both ancient and modern techniques to create bold contemporary pieces. McClellan's community outreach programs contribute to the development of glass as a creative medium both locally and internationally. His gallery--a beautifully renovated, former tomato packing plant--is located in St. Petersburg's hip Warehouse Arts District and represents fine glass artists from around the world.
- Warehouse Arts District: The Warehouse Arts District is a flourishing cultural hub in St. Petersburg. Approximately 225 artists work in the District's square mile, 15 of them glass artists. Ride the free trolley to "where art is made" on the WAD's popular Second Saturday evening events.
St. Petersburg, Florida, was voted the "Number One Mid-Sized City Destination for the Arts" in 2012 by America Style Magazine. For more on the area's natural and cultural attractions, beach vacation deals and more, see Visit St. Petersburg/Clearwater.