Gulfshore Life – Guide to the Best Waterfront Restaurants in Naples
The best waterfront restaurant in Naples
From chic establishments with tables on the sand to seafood shacks in the Everglades, these restaurants in Naples, Marco Island and Everglades City offer views of the water.
Baleen at LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort spans prime real estate on Vanderbilt Beach, with tables on the sand, a wide patio, and a chandelier-lit dining area. The kitchen always makes a good impression, starting with the most important meal of the day (lobster Benedict, anyone?). Lunch can be predictable and pricey, but dinner shines, with dishes like braised lamb shank over polenta and lobster bucatini. For a date, book a candlelit table on the beach.
2. The Bay House
If you haven’t discovered this somewhat hidden stunner, you’re missing out on vibrant and sophisticated southern-inspired cuisine. Wrapped in mangroves, the deck overlooks the meandering waters, perfect for relaxing with BBQ shrimp and grits, house-made chilli cheese and a “Sea BLT” salad with fried green tomatoes and lobster, crab and shrimp refrigerated. The adjacent tavern-restaurant doesn’t quite have the impressive views of the main room, but it has live music and a raw bar.
3. The Village Shops on Venetian Bay M Waterfront Grille
This bayside shopping district is home to a slew of upscale restaurants. The haute cuisine and impeccable service of M Waterfront grille are hard to beat, but so is the excellent lobster macaroni and cheese from fish restaurant and juicy burger at The Village Bistro. Grill and seafood bar by the bay has water-level and elevated dining areas, plus a fun rooftop bar. And, the courtyard patio at MiraMare Ristorante is a wonderful place to sample simple Italian dishes like lemon calamari fritti.
4. Osteria Capri
Opened in 2020, Osteria Capri in the Isles of Capri overlooks floating boats on the serene backwaters from its intimate glass-enclosed dining room, alfresco patio, and full bar. Here, chef AJ Black, of Sanibel’s former Il Tesoro fame, celebrates Italian heritage as well as local bounty through dishes like seafood pizza (made in a wood-fired oven and with flour imported, of course), zuppa di pesce and fish of the day. For dessert, the coconut tiramisu is not to be missed.
5. Camellia Street Grill (City of the Everglades)
You can often see the stone crab boat moored out back and garden workers picking herbs that end up on your plates. Place your order at the counter and claim a picnic table in the screened-in dining room or in the gnomes-filled yard and patio. The menu ranges from expected Everglades cuisine – fried seafood baskets, frog legs, oyster po’boy and seasonal stone crab – to house treats, like lima bean soup with shanks of pork and the so refreshing seffredo style key lime pie.
6. Sale and Pepe
The Marco Beach Ocean Resort takes its flagship restaurant, Sale e Pepe, so seriously that it has a separate aisle and valet and a 500-bottle wine list. The Italian chef’s reinventions of classic dishes from his homeland sing, like a fish and seafood stew or sea bass with slow-cooked clams. And, the view of the calming waves is simply dreamy. Sit alfresco on the spacious fan-covered terrace for the best seats and the best soundtrack. Then dive into perfectly al dente linguine and a glass of Pinot Grigio.
At the adults-only Tesoro at the JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort, modernist interiors elevate the beauty of the gulf, with its wall of windows and fifth-floor perch. The dinner-only menu is an ode to Mediterranean cuisine, blending Italian, Greek, French, Moroccan, and Lebanese specialties with a contemporary twist and local catches. Don’t sleep on the homemade pappardelle with spiced poached lobster and charred tomato littleneck clams.
8. Celebration Park
This food truck park keeps the action going from lunch to dinner every night. Grab a picnic table or a seat around the rectangular bar, overlooking the Bay of Naples, and treat yourself to a day of progressive meals, from lobster fries at Island Seafood to vegan tacos al pastor at Mega Sabor to the spicy roast chicken at Deccani Bites and roast quail at Great Foodini (yes, everything is gourmet, fresh and chef-directed here).
9. Three 60s Market
Just across from Celebration Park is this darling bistro and wine shop, where all wines are sold at a markup of just $3.60 (hence the name). Step up to the counter, where you can admire the selection of salads and home-prepared pastries or order from the menu of sandwiches and omelets for breakfast and fresh pastas, loaded salads and burgers for lunch. Claim a table on the breezy terrace overlooking the bay or pack a packed picnic.
10. Crayton Cove Wharf
The nearly 50-year-old Dock at Crayton Cove in the heart of downtown Naples remains a reliable reserve for brewskis and burgers (the double patty option with caramelized onions and house sauce is worth the calories). The wooden structure sits on the water’s edge at the City Dock, providing the perfect backdrop for lunch, dinner or Sunday brunch (the build-your-own Bloody Mary bar on Sundays is legendary).
11. Gumbo Limbo at the Ritz-Carlton, Naples
At The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, a stroll down the boardwalk through the sea grapes leads you to the oceanfront deck, where every table has a front-row seat to the gulf. All the hallmarks of a Florida vacation are here: a chicken-style bar, island-inspired decor, lush greenery, great bar food and an extensive menu, tropical drinks and, of course, the view of the breaking waves. Time your visit for sunset, when each day ends with the sound of a bell, a beloved local tradition.
12. The Turtle Club at Vanderbilt Beach Resort
Located within the Vanderbilt Beach Resort, the Turtle Club not only offers you a breathtaking view of the beach; here, your table is planted directly on the sand. And, while first-timers can opt for the spectacular sunset views, regulars return for signature dishes such as The Sea Harvest mix, “Turtlefeller” oysters, and Napoleon shrimp and crab. Ask about Turtle Club Pirate Java, a finished rum in coffee barrels, distilled exclusively for the restaurant by Winter Park Distilling.
13. Nosh on the Bay of Naples at Naples Bay Resort & Marina
With prime real estate on the water within the Naples Bay Resort & Marina and a globally inspired small plate menu, Nosh is a living representation of what chef-owner Todd Johnson and his wife, Dana, appreciate the most in the restaurant: the originality, refined technique, honest ingredients, welcoming hospitality, delicious presentations and great wines (Todd is a certified sommelier). While the menus are high-end, the salty open-air harbor seating creates a laid-back, hidden vibe.
14. Buzz’s Lighthouse
Since the 1980s, this dive seafood shack has stayed true to its Old Florida roots, dishing out a steady supply of coconut shrimp, fish & chips, grouper sandwiches and seafood platters. sea. The location in the backwaters of Vanderbilt Beach is hard to beat, as are the generous portions and exceptional service. There’s a reason legions of locals and out-of-towners proudly proclaim they’ve been going back for decades.