SRQ Magazine proudly presents Building of the Year, a competition celebrating the new commercial, mixed-used and public buildings, enhancing the skyline along the Gulf Coast. Judged on design concept, function and usage, integrity of design, creativity and features, we recognize the stunning structures that garnered this year's top awards.



Photo 1


Platinum: INFINITY | DSDG Architects

Longboat Key has seen a new condominium typology of ultra-large units to line its shores, shifting away from Mediterranean styling and closer towards a contemporary or modern style. This combination offers the perfect compromise for owners who appreciate the open space and lines of modern architecture but are not willing to stray too far from their traditional roots. The metal roofs reflect the notion that Coastal Contemporary buildings are mostly an island-inspired, warm, relaxed design that includes clean lines but isn’t as austere as a true modern structure. INFINITY’s eleven exclusive units range in size from 4,800 square feet enlarging to the penthouse units at 7,600 square feet, and boast beachfront glass-walled living spaces parallel to the waterline, which offer unobstructed balcony vistas to the Gulf horizon. Each unit was customizable—even during construction—to give the new owners all their wants and needs. The units scaled from three bedrooms plus a den, to four or five bedrooms plus a media room in the penthouses. Owners found solace in the availability to customize wall layouts, circulation routes, electrical and A/V options plus every interior finish to their liking. Site amenities over the three-acre parcel include a detached fitness center, a full kitchen clubhouse for hosting events, a competition-sized tennis court, private garages for each unit, a pool and spa at beach level and walkdown units to the 240 feet of private beachfront. INFINITY is the embodiment of island lifestyle and merges the privacy and luxury expected on Longboat Key. 

Architect: Mark Sultana, AIA, NCARB; Contractor: Tandem Construction; Developer: Crossgate Partners, LLC; Interior Design: Riley Interior Design; Structural Engineer: Karins Engineering Group, Inc.; Landscape Architect: DWJA Landscape Architects; Photographer: Ryan Gamma Photography.

Gold: ARCOS | Framework Group, LLC and Forge Capital Partners

Arcos puts everything within your orbit with its ultra-convenient location, resort-style amenities and high level of service. Sited in the vibrant Rosemary District and designed for modern city life, Arcos brings residents closer to where they work, shop, eat and play. Arcos has a distinctive personality with the exterior aesthetics built on a modern interpretation of the Spanish Mediterranean Revival.  The elegant façade and artful setting inspire classic symmetry in its gated entrance and arcades of graceful arches. Arcos wraps around its hacienda courtyard to embrace a half-acre oasis of lush plantings and fountains including a large saltwater pool and sundeck, outdoor kitchen and fresco dining spots, leisure seating bocce court, grand fireplace and entertaining pavilion. Throughout the property’s common areas, unique and original works of art will be on display with an on-site gallery of curated works. A significant sculpture produced by internationally recognized visual artist Daniel Arsham will be displayed at the property’s Fruitville entrance. Arcos apartments are designed for today’s lifestyles offering sleek studios and one-, two- and three-bedroom configurations with open spaces and private places. These stylish domains have extra-large windows, city and courtyard views, designer finishes and flooring, upgraded kitchens and baths and lofty 10’-14’ ceilings.

Architect: Charlan Brock & Associates Architects - Planners; Contractor: Winter Park Construction; Interior Design: Focus Design; Structural Engineer: Paul J. Ford & Company; Landscape Architect: Booth Design Group; Carpets/Flooring: Winter Park Construction. Named the 2017 Reader's Choice Award: Voted on by SRQ Magazine readers, Arcos took the top spot as the 2017 Building of the Year Readers' Choice Award Recipient.



Photo 2


Platinum: BEACH HOUSE WATERFRONT RESTAURANT | The Schimberg Group, Inc.

After completing an extensive interior renovation of the Beach House Waterfront Restaurant Deck in 2015, the Chiles Group kept the momentum going and moved to the exterior, including the main entry façade and, most importantly, the beachside deck. The constantly busy restaurant has been renovated with full views of the deck and gulf beyond, enhanced by new larger windows and properly located seating. An acoustic, stained wood ceiling reminds visitors of a boat deck and creates a design element to be continued onto the deck renovation. Every detail and design element revolves around creating a beach getaway vacation environment. The structure found between the pavilions can open to the sky or close for inclement weather conditions. Arcadia Roof Systems and Absolute Aluminum came together to design the trellis system wow-factor. The sunken lounge area is reminiscent of a resort, furnished with Adirondack-style furniture cleverly made of recycled milk cartons. The outdoor bar is finished with a colorful wood-look porcelain tile, like the look of interior tabletops. To further the vintage island feel, a custom-designed vanity in deep nautical blue with a classic Carrera marble top adds elegance to the bridal suite and bathroom. As the client requested, the entry porte-cochere is an iconic, architectural feature, reminiscent of the underside of a boat, tapping into the inherent qualities of a gorgeous boat sitting by the dock. Alongside the local Chamberlain Ironworks is a colorful sculpture of an abstract school of fish in sea foam greens, ocean blues, sandy browns and earthy reds, pulling colors from the newly designed building corner and anchor signage. The sign’s structure, wrapped in uniquely shaped, multi-colored concrete tiles by Dex Industries, appears to be flapping in the sea breezes, setting the tone for the new monumental sign, with the same tile and warm, natural palette for all the materials throughout the renovated restaurant’s indoor and outdoor spaces.

Architect: The Schimberg Group, Inc.; Contractor: Whitehead Construction, Inc.; Developer: Chiles Restaurant Group; Interior Design: The Schimberg Group, Inc. - Patty Schimberg; Structural Engineer: Charles Sego- Sego & Sego Structural Engineering; Carpets/Flooring: Azex Deckwn/ Custom Concrete Tile/ Porcelain; Photographer: Greg Wilson Photography; Other: Arcadia Roof System 


At the heart of IMG Academy is the Performance and Sports Science Center, a 55,000-square-foot all-encompassing athletic facility. As an organizing element overlooking and anchoring the campus’ main plaza, its strategic location on campus creates relationships with the adjacent buildings, fields and facilities, bridging academics, athletics and sports science. The frame itself is an architectural expression of the school’s insignia, the Ascenders, as it rises from east to west. The intentional use of metal and glass offers a sleek profile embodying a balanced athlete with muscularity, grace and poise. Simultaneously, the linear nature of the metal panels put the building into motion. The interior layout of the three-story building was designed for maximum functionality for all staff and athletes, housing a workout space, mind gym, mental conditioning, athletic training, administrative offices, classrooms and the Gatorade Sports Science Institute. As early as the planning and programming phases of the project, Fawley Bryant Architecture worked closely with contractors and the client to ensure that the technology used with testing equipment and computers would be fully incorporated. In some cases, voids in the slab were left to allow technology to be accommodated for the continuing growth of the Sports Science Center.

Architect: Fawley Bryant Architecture.; Contractor: Tandem Construction; Structural Engineer: Hees & Associates, Inc.; Interior Design: Fawley Bryant Architecture; Landscape Architect: Stantec; Carpets/Flooring: Shaw Contract Group. Mohawk Trinity Surfaces, PLAE floor.; Interior Design: Fawley Bryant Architecture.; Photographer: Greg Wilson Photography.

Silver: SARASOTA MEMORIAL REHABILITATION PAVILION | Sarasota Memorial Health Care System

Located on the southwest quadrant of Sarasota Memorial Hospital’s main campus, Sarasota Memorial’s Rehabilitation Pavilion stands as a beacon of hope and healing for people recovering from debilitating illnesses and injuries. The stunning 84,000-square-foot pavilion brings the best medical, rehabilitation and mobility therapies together under one roof. With its own dedicated entrance and parking, the five-story pavilion is designed as a freestanding facility, but connects to the hospital’s main hospital on two floors, ensuring seamless interaction between interdisciplinary care teams. Awash with natural light and colors, the walls are adorned with nature-inspired works by local artists, and each corridor has alcoves with built-in benches and lighting that accents motivational quotes. From grab bars and fire alarms to advanced technologies, every feature is intricately placed and designed to accommodate to patients’ needs.

Architect: Gresham Smith & Partners; Contractor: Skanska; Developer: Sarasota Memorial Healthcare System; Interior Design: Gresham Smith & Partners; Structural Engineer: Walter P. Moore; Landscape Architect: Stantec.


Photo 3

Platinum: ELLING EIDE CENTER | Dean Thompson, Inc.

Located on 60 undisturbed acres on the bay in Sarasota, the Elling Eide Center celebrates the life of Elling Oliver Eide, a third generation Sarasota native and one of the world’s foremost Chinese scholars. Eide, who passed in 2012, was a former Harvard and University of Chicago professor of Chinese Studies. His lifetime love of learning and passion for research resulted in acquiring and preserving what has been called the second largest private library of Asian literature in the US (Harvard being the first). This project was originally intended to serve as his private residence as well as a library for his collection. Since his passing, the Eide Foundation was formed and the project was transformed into a library and research center for scholars to come, research his collection and live on site. Elements of the original residence were left intact to honor the memory of Eide. The building is composed of two parallel bars separated by a tower containing the entry, reception and vertical circulation. The eastern bar contains the two-story library and the western bar on the lower level contains meeting and seminar rooms as well as support spaces. The upper level is compiled of galleries for Eide’s art collections, limited seminar space, offices and the residential component. The design is a careful study of mass-void and the engagement of and play between a series of volumetric elements.

Architect: Damien Blumetti, Project Manager, Guy Peterson; Office for Architecture; Interior Design: David Lowe Interior Design; Structural Engineer: Wilson Structural Consultants, Inc.; Contractor: Dean Thompson, Inc.; Landscape Architect: Michael A. Gilkey, Inc.; Photographer: Ryan Gamma Photography.

Gold: THE MARK | Hoyt Architects

First conceived of more than ten years ago as part of the Pineapple Square project, The MARK was re- imagined by HOYT Architects, based upon similar programmatic elements, but with a cleaner design that more directly accentuates the unusual, triangular site. The MARK features 157 residences, a street-level covered pedestrian promenade, 35,000 square feet of retail space, 11,000 square feet of office space and several hundred parking spaces for residents, visitors, shoppers and the public. Residential amenities include an elevated resort-style pool with private cabanas and fire pit lounge, a clubroom with a catering kitchen and bar, a newsroom and a state-of-the-art fitness center. The MARK will serve as a Downtown Sarasota “landmark” in many ways. It will mark the point at which the north/south – east/west grid of downtown meets the angular street grid emanating from the Bayfront. It will also include Downtown Sarasota’s only covered pedestrian shopping promenade, providing a dry, shady respite from Sarasota’s sometimes rainy, warm summer afternoons.

Architect: HOYT Architects.; Contractor: Kast Construction; Developer: Koltier; Interior Design: Designers Unlimited; Structural Engineer: BNI Structural Engineers; Landscape Architect: Phil Smith


Silver:  SANSARA | Hoyt Architects

The philosophy behind the design and zen-inspired architectural elements of SANSARA and its common areas was centered on creating a peaceful refuge within the vibrancy of city life. 17 unique condominium units offer bayfront views, and a sophisticated urban living experience in a boutique residence, [centrally located in Downtown Sarasota at the gateway to the historic Burns Court neighborhood, SANSARA.] The amenities deck incorporates a pool, private spa, covered cabanas, a large outdoor social area with a fire pit and a bar and a fitness room with an area for yoga. These common amenities provide a balanced flow of energy by utilizing natural elements in proper alignment with woods, beautiful bamboo, water features, natural stone and a thoughtful selection of native plant species. SANSARA is built to the latest standards of the Downtown Master Plan incorporating several pedestrian-friendly, street-shaping strategies. A private, secured parking garage is located on the ground level, carefully hidden behind a narrow liner of street-front retail. Double elevator banks service the 17 residences, with private codes accessing each floor. An advanced building entry system includes the use of video technology, key fobs, personal codes and remote and buzzer entry systems.

Architect: HOYT Architects.; Contractor: Kellog & Kimsey, Inc.; Developer: MK Equity Corporation; Structural Engineer: Wilson Structural Consultants; Landscape Architect: HOYT Architects, Peter Kegnan; Carpets/Flooring: Gulf Tile Cabinetry; Photographer: Ryan Gamma Photography.


Photo 4

Platinum:  NATHAN BENDERON PARK FINISH TOWER | Fawley Bryant Architecture

As the venue for the 2017 World Rowing Championships, Nathan Benderson Park has become a global destination and representation of Sarasota County. Within the park is the Finish Tower, a 25,745-square-foot building with a 102’ 6” top elevation. Celebrating the location of the finish line, the tower is iconic from both near and far. A glass box, used as a viewing instrument, is housed in a light protective structure that gracefully rises above the surrounding water, reflecting the dynamic Sarasota sky, allowing the public to not only enjoy rowing events, but also community events on the lawn. With an unmatched, 360° view of the park, this facility serves a substantial role in the community. Functionality is a precise and mandatory component of the rowing sport, requiring intricate site considerations, unobstructed viewing angles for cameras, judges and spectators, who all desire expansive views of the 1.35 mile (2180 meter) course and event areas to the east. The solution is an outward-focused structure, offering many levels of viewing from a glass interior to multi-level exterior decks with iconic columns and a simple roof extending out for protection. The covered ground floor level, with 15’ ceiling height, creates a generous space for shade and breezes accompanied by ‘Big Ass Fans’ that circulate air to further create a comfortable exterior environment. The building provides accessible restrooms for visitors to the site and a slightly elevated platform allows for intimate views to the rowing events. The expansive platform tiers towards the water and inlaid turf softens the edge for a water-level view of the finish line. On every floor, a white LED strip light fixture on the ceiling and wall artfully illustrates the exact location of the finish line transposed on the interior of the spaces. The second level houses a flexible, open space with access to a spacious deck where hundreds can enjoy the sculpted site from seating attached to a powder-coated aluminum cable system. On the third level, the race judges sit in tiered seats aligned at the finish line. The technical FISA requirements presented the design team with more challenges; however, through tactful coordination and thorough research, the requirements were met. An enclosed finish camera is housed above the judges’ viewing configuration for capturing the final moments of the race. Secure office space occupies the fourth level and VIP viewing takes place on the fifth level.  An open roof terrace capitalizes on the 72’ elevation of the sixth level, with panoramic views of the course, neighboring communities and Sarasota skyline in the distance. The roof terrace surface is a walkable membrane composed of lightweight concrete with a glass railing and sloped aluminum cap, creating a continuous look to the glass box aesthetic. Marrying beauty with functionality, the Nathan Benderson Park Finish Tower’s polished design and sophisticated details provide once-in-a-lifetime views and experiences for all.

Architect: Fawley Bryant Architecture, Guy Peterson Office for Architecture; Contractor: Benderson Development Company; Developer: Benderson Development Company; Structural Engineer: Wilson Structural Consultants; Carpets/Flooring: Interface, Garden State Tile; Interior Design: Fawley Bryant Architecture.; Photographer: Ryan Gamma Photography.



The Ringling College of Art and Design’s Alfred R. Goldstein Library creates a vibrant focus for learning at the heart of its expanding campus. An important goal for the trustees at the outset of the planning process was to create a facility that was transformative, enhanced Ringling College’s reputation as a preeminent school of art and design and set a new direction for future campus design. Open and transparent, the library’s ground floor is a hub of activity, revealing the life within. Internally, the building is organized by layers of activity, progressing from most active to quietest, as users move from ground floor to upper floors and along the east to west axis from campus edge to bayou. A series of outdoor terraces on the upper floors offer views and vantage points of the campus, providing sources of inspiration and different perspectives. The striking new building sits on the edge of Whitaker Bayou and its iconic form embodies Ringling College’s creative community. This milestone project allows the school’s entire 75,000-piece collection to be housed on-site, with space to grow. A series of group collaboration spaces, maker space, project space, a print room, learning commons with public computers, a video game design room and a café are all features found in the building. Designed to allow visitors to easily flow from interior to exterior, the ground floor flows directly out to the panoramic terrace. An open staircase weaves through the library’s center, providing a visual and physical sculptural connection between floors and programs, with its black form a stunning contrast to the light and colorful interior color palette of the library. Filled with furniture chosen by the students themselves at a furniture fair hosted by the design team, the Goldstein Library embodies creativity and discovery.

Architect: Shepley Bulfinch; Associate Architect: Sweet Sparkman Architects; Interior Design: Shepley Bulfinch; Contractor; Willis A. Smith Construction, Inc.; Structural Engineer: Simpson Gumpertz and Heger, Inc.; Landscape Architect: DWJA Landscape Architect; Carpets/Flooring: Aldrich Flooring, Inc.; Phowtographer: Kevin Gerhart Photography.

Silver:  SARASOTA MEMORIAL HOSPITAL JEAN & ALFRED GOLDSTEIN HEALTH CENTER | Deangelis Diamond and Sarasota Memorial Hospital

Located in north Sarasota, the Sarasota Memorial Internal Medicine Practice – Newtown is a symbol of community revitalization and a medical milestone for the Suncoast region. Spanning two city-owned blocks, the medical practice is the culmination of a public partnership between Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, Florida State University College of Medicine and the City of Sarasota, with a shared vision to increase access to care and reshape the health of the Newtown community. The completed structure is a 6,008-square-foot hurricane-hardened masonry block building with steel beams, steel bar joists and metal decking. It contains 12 exam rooms located around the perimeter of the building, with full height impact-resistant storefront glass windows that take advantage of natural light with white blackout shades. Special considerations were made for bariatric patients, including wider doorways and larger furniture. The long and open physicians’ office serves multiple physicians at the same time. Like the exam rooms, the office is located on a perimeter wall with full height windows to let in natural light. Artwork made by Booker High School students adorn the practice walls of the building that reflects leadership, foresight and philanthropy.

Architect: Lawson Group Architects, Inc.; Contractor: DeAngelis Diamond.; Developer: Sarasota Memorial Public Hospital Board; Interior Design: Lawson Group Architects, Inc.; Structural Engineer: Wilson Structural Consultants, Inc.; Photographer: Amber Frederickson Photography, Inc.


Meet Our Judges

Francis Lussier, AIA | NCARB

Senior Project Architect, Peacock + Lewis Architects & Planners, LLC

Francis Lussier is an architect with more than 16 years of experience in the related field of architectural design. While coming up the ranks as an associate architect with the West Palm Beach firm Stephen Boruff, AIA Architects + Planners Inc., Mr. Lussier contributed in the firm’s AIA Palm Beach award-winning public and private projects, ranging from administrative headquarters and educational facilities to civic buildings. Currently a senior project architect with the leading hospitality and club design firm Peacock + Lewis Architects and Planners, LLC, he is responsible for the planning and design of world class clubhouse facilities and multi-faceted hospitality projects. When not trying to keep up with his tennis skills, from his long past NCAA Division I competing days, Mr. Lussier enjoys traveling and mentoring young architects while volunteering with the Palm Beach Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, and serving as the 2017 president of the association.

K.J. Jacobs

Principal and Corporate Studio Director, McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture

K.J. Jacobs is a principal and director of McMillan Pazdan Smith’s Corporate Studio. His professional experience in a broad range of project types has resulted in a distinctive collaborative style. He works closely with both public and private sector clients throughout South Carolina and North Carolina, with a primary emphasis on developer-led projects. Mr. Jacobs has overseen some of the firm’s most significant projects and continues to manage all office, retail, restaurant, adaptive re-use, hospitality and industrial manufacturing design work. His strong client relationships and focus on delivering projects on-time and under budget are instrumental in the continued growth of the firm’s corporate studio. In addition to his project responsibilities, he sits on the firm’s executive committee and leads the internal leadership program for intern architects. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Virginia and a master of Architecture from Clemson University.