Pier Park in Panama City Beach has Great Shopping and Entertainment
Shopping, restaurants, entertainment, even an amusement park, Pier Park has it all.
Across from the beach and within walking distance of Panama City Beach hotels, Pier Park is a unique open-air shopping mall offering dining, entertainment and some of the country's top retail stores. With Caribbean style architecture and over one million square feet of shops and restaurants, this regional lifestyle center is the area's premier shopping destination.
Shopping and Dining
There's plenty to see and do here from browsing through long time retail-chain favorites to exploring one-of-a-kind shops with unique beach-themed merchandise. Anchored by Target, J C Penney, and Dillard’s department stores, the mall also is also home to Hollister Company, Old Navy, Coldwater Creek, Chico’s, American Eagle Outfitters, Bath & Body Works, and Victoria’s Secret. Ron Jon Surf Shop heads the list of beach stores that includes Beach Scene and Footprints Coastal Décor.
Beach themed restaurants can be found across from the Dan Russell City Pier on Front Beach Road. The list includes Guy Harvey’s Island Grill, Reggae J’s, the Backporch Seafood and Oyster House, and Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville. Quick snacks are available at several eateries like Panera Bread Company, the Candy Maker, and the Great American Cookie Company, and great Italian food is served at the Olive Garden and Guglielmo's Italian Grill.
Other entertainment includes the Grand Theatre with 16 screens and 3-D capability, the Paint N’ Place, where patrons can paint their own pottery, and Mirror Maze & Lazer Craze, a family fun house with a labyrinth of mirrored passages and dead ends within the mirror maze, and a corridor of laser beams crisscrossing in a black room in the Laser Craze.
Night life can be found at several venues, but Tootises Orchid Lounge, a famous Nashville nightspot that opened its second location at Pier Park, is one of the most popular. True to its Nashville roots, Tootsies features the live music of up-and-coming artists.
Beachcomber by the Sea - 17101 Front Beach Road, 850-233-3600. This beachfront hotel offers a heated, gulf-front pool, gulf-front accommodations with private balconies and fully-equipped kitchens.
Tidewater Beach Resort - 16819 Front Beach Road, 850-636-8000. This beachfront resort offers one, two and three-bedroom condo units, all with fully equipped kitchen, walk-in closets, washer/dryers and spectacular views of the Gulf.
Legacy by the Sea - 15325 Front Beach Road, 888-886-8917. Located across the street from Gulf World Marine Park, this 14-story beachfront hotel offers gulf-front rooms with private balconies and fully-equipped kitchens.
Note: This article first appeared January 10, 2010 on Suite101.com. It has been revised and updated here.
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