Fifth Avenue in Manhattan is synonymous with prestigious shops, classy restaurants, historic landmarks and fine entertainment. Naples, Florida’s 5th Avenue South is not dissimilar, offering some of the city’s most noteworthy architecture and a delightful shopping and dining experience.
This historic main street is lined with all types of businesses and specialty shops including art galleries, boutiques, high-class gift shops, jewelers, realtors, ice cream shops, cafés, beauty salons, banks and professional offices. The broad sidewalks are filled with visitors and residents ambling along at an unhurried pace, drinking in the charm and atmosphere of downtown Naples.
Tropical landscaping, shady palm trees and pleasing architecture painted in soft Key West colors remind people of why this Southwest Florida city is so popular. The warm sunny climate is perfect for al fresco dining and there are over 30 cafés, restaurants, pubs and bistros to cater for every taste. From Paddy Murphy’s Irish Pub to the Osetra Champagne Caviar Bar it doesn’t come much more eclectic. Whether you hanker for fish and chips, pizza, crab, and seafood or the perfect steak, you will find at least one restaurant to perfectly satisfy your cravings.
History of Fifth Avenue South in Naples
Fifth Avenue South has been the beating heart of Naples since the 1920s. It’s come a long way since Ed Frank opened his garage alongside Hixon’s Sundries and Jack “Doc” Prince’s Naples Liquors. Ed Frank’s Garage was the first commercial building on 5th Avenue South and the family lived over the shop. Mrs. Frank would throw her kitchen scraps out of the window to feed the alligators below! As well as owning the first car dealership in Naples, Ed also invented the swamp buggy.
There was a regular Orange Blossom Train Service to the Naples Station from 1927 to 1971 and the building has since been put to good use as the Naples Depot Museum. Club 41 was the locals’ hangout, along with the small golf course at the end of Fifth. The golf course also provided a convenient landing strip for Charles “Lucky” Lindberg when he visited friends in the area!
Even today, there’s far more to 5th Avenue South than boutiques, bars, and bazaars. The Business Improvement District (BID) was founded in 2010 to help local businesses work together to maximize their potential as a one-stop destination for all types of businesses. Building on its past success, 5th Avenue South continues to prosper and flourish at a time when other shopping and dining destinations are faltering.
Entertainment on Fifth Avenue South
Fifth Avenue South regularly hosts festivals and events, many with an art theme. See the streets turn green for the St Paddy’s Day Parade, enjoy Art in the Park and see 5th Avenue South beautifully decorated for the Holidays.
There is an ongoing program of performances, plays and Broadway musicals by the Naples Players at the Sugden Community Theatre and more entertainment at the Gulfshore Playhouse and The von Lieberg Art Center.
Whether you are looking for a great evening’s entertainment, a memorable meal, a new piece of artwork or a delightful day of shopping, 5th Avenue South in Naples is the place to find it all.