New, culinary-themed hotel opens in Tampa

December 19, 2013 • Business

This Dec. 17, 2013 photo shows Norwood Smith, vice president of sales and marketing for Mainsail Lodging and Development Group, showing moveable wine racks during a tour of the new Epicurean Hotel in Tampa, Fla. Tampa’s newest hotel, which opened this week, is focused on food, with a restaurant, bakery, culinary theater, wine store and cooking classes onsite. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — In the past, the Tampa Bay region hasn’t been high on a foodie’s travel bucket list.

Sure, there are some tasty Cuban sandwiches in Tampa and fresh grouper in restaurants along the Gulf of Mexico.

But cutting-edge culinary trends haven’t surfaced here – until now.

The Epicurean Hotel, a $35 million, 137-room hotel, opened on Tuesday. The entire concept revolves around food: There’s an 80-seat restaurant, patisserie, culinary theater, wine store, rooftop bar and cooking classes in a theater that looks like it’s a Food Network set. While a vacation centered around food is nothing new in Napa wine country, rustic Vermont or Login to read more

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