In 1881, Loring chase visited the city of Osceola for the first time. The moment he saw it, he envisioned a thriving place with heritage and relaxation for the visitors that would visit from the North to spend their winters in Florida. Along with his partner Oliver chapman, they began to plan out the blueprints for what became known as Park Avenue. In 1885, the Winter Park Company was founded, and is still a thriving business today. Once the town was charted in 1887, their mission became clear, to “plant trees, keep the sidewalks in repair, fix up parks and encourage sociability”. Today, Park Avenue has become “a thriving city with educational and cultural amenities as well as diverse restaurants and shops” that will be fit for anyone.
Hidden away in a quaint courtyard, Brandywine books has been a local fixture for decades. It is a small, well organized bookstore with a wide selection of many categories. They are an above average bookstore with several collectible firsts, but also with hidden nonfiction titles that are rarely seen or talked about. This is the perfect spot if you are someone that wants to get away from all the hustle and bustle and just wants to curl up with a good book in a quiet and peaceful setting.
If you want premium seafood and steaks and melt in your mouth, blu on the avenue is the place for you. It brings the modern West and East coast cuisines together with a twist. Inspired by locals and Orlando tourists, they feature fresh seafood, the “Best” clam chowder, salads, sandwiches, steaks and so much more. Their concept is simple: deliver the best fresh seafood, prime steaks and classic cocktails in a laid back and relaxed environment that bring our guests back each and every time.
The Café de France first opened its doors in July of 1982. Over 30 years later, it continues the tradition of being owned and operated by French natives and follows the pattern of the many little restaurants in France. Their ingredients are brought in daily and they are freshly prepared on the premises. With specials changing daily and a large menu of options, the café de France is a great place to enjoy the ambiance of France without spending thousands of dollars.
The Albin Polasek museum and sculpture gardens offers 3 unique year round experiences that their guests can enjoy. The outdoor sculpture gardens is three acres situated on the shore of Lake Osceola. This colorful backdrop provides for numerous sculptures by Polasek and other 20th century artists to be featured in all their magnificence. The gallery is a variety of local, national and international artists to display their works. Since this gallery changes throughout the year, there is always someone new to feature and many works of art to admire for their guests. Finally, the home and chapel of the late Albin Polasek is a sight to behold. The house showcases many of his own works, as well as his private collection of works that he has collected during his lifetime. www.polasek.org
If you are an Orlando native or visiting for the first time, Park Avenue is a sight to see. From walking through one of the parks, to sightseeing in one of their three museums, it is a place of localism and sophistication that will keep you coming back every time.