Poets & Writers Retreat
with the charm of centuries ago
History of Garst House
Garst House, an inspiring “Old Florida” two-story five bedroom home built in 1913. Owned by the Garst family since 1925. Your writing project—start, continue, or complete—in the privacy of your own room (or on the grounds, or the front veranda). You will feel as though you are living over a century ago, in the Florida winter sunshine (unlike no other), or when the occasional rain pours down and pounds on the tin roof while Florida breezes flow through the many tall unique windows, wide hallway and extra doorways. Each furnished private room comes with A/C, heating, high-speed internet, a writing desk, and a comfy bed. We have a varied and eclectic library of books, both obscure and popular fiction, religion and health. We hope to add an "autographed copy" of your book to it as well! There is a wide front veranda with outside tables and chairs ready for writing inspirations with a cup of coffee or tea. A green space of 2.5 acres—with gardens, flowers, paths, birds, squirrels, butterflies and the occasional wild rabbit—are available for private walks and inspiration. Tall oak trees drip with Spanish moss, and the tallest tree in the neighborhood, colloquially called a “monkey puzzle” tree (Araucaria araucana), stands proudly in the front yard just past the stairs of the front porch. Not only is the tree tall, but it is also quite unique. Because of the longevity of the species, it is described as a living fossil. Its circumference at its base is about 5 feet around, and towers above the house and grounds at well over 100 feet high.
When you need a break from writing, you are only minutes from area beaches (the white sand and sea shells unique to Florida), shopping, restaurants, night life, Myakka State Park, Bradenton and Sarasota art galleries, and other attractions. Siesta Key Beach (16 miles from the Garst House front door) has been rated the Number 1 Beach in America (in 2017), and google searches currently give the beach a 4.8 out of 5.0.
A Continental breakfast is included with your stay. Preparing your own hot breakfast (including coming soon, gratis, fresh eggs from our hen house) is also an option. Tea and coffee (also gratis) are always readily available, as is the on-site washer and dryer.
For an additional fee, you are welcome to share an evening meal with your hosts, Lynn (an editor) and C.C. Carter (a poet, songwriter, and good southern cook) along with other guests, or in the privacy of your own room. We try to accommodate special dietary needs, whenever possible, or for an additional fee if necessary.
There are two large common baths—one with a deep claw foot tub, and the other with an extra large walk-in shower.
The house is shared with three resident cats and a small watch dog. Two of the cats do not venture past their rooms upstairs, and one wanders about, but not in the guest rooms, unless invited.
Four writer / poet rooms may be available in any given period, October through April, with a minimum thirty-day residency, based on a month-to-month occupancy agreement. Contact Chris or Lynn at 941-245-1530, or visit the Contact Page of this Garst House website (www.GarstHouse.com).
We look forward to hearing from you, and helping you meet your creative goals!
Patio dining at local river in Palmetto
Visit next town over, Palmetto, for riverside dining. Then cross the bridge back to Bradenton to enjoy Bradenton's Village of the Arts.
Why Choose Garst House
Feel as though you are living over a century ago. A quiet green space, yet conveniently located near award winning beaches, shopping, sightseeing, restaurants, art galleries. Nearby Sarasota, St. Pete and Tampa.
Easy To Book
Contact Chris or Lynn at 941.245.1530 to discuss your needs. A quiet accommodation to complete your writing project. Or venue for small meetings and intimate weddings. Also available as a unique film location.
Clean and Safe
And handicap friendly.
Rooms upon availability. Either singularly, or booked as the two-room Fitzgerald Suite, plus the private Molly Bloom room on the upper story.
Chris and Lynn
Lynn, Third Generation Garst
Husband of Granddaughter