Downtown Tampa From The Westshore District


Looking northeast from the Corporate Centers on Boy Scout Blvd.

  • Tampa's Ybor City was once known as the "Cigar Capital of the World" with nearly 12,000 people employed in 200 factories.

  • The world's first commercial flight was made by a young daredevil pilot named Tony Jannus, who flew from St. Petersburg to Tampa on January 1, 1914.

  • Baseball player Babe Ruth hit his longest home run in Tampa at Plant Field on April 4, 1919. He smacked a 587-foot home run that set a record in a pre-season game.

  • The rich and famous call the Bay area home. Some of the area's celebrity population includes tennis great Pete Sampras, LA Dodgers' Super Star Gary Sheffield, General Norman Schwarzkopf, George Steinbrenner and Hulk Hogan.

  • The title to a park in Ybor City, the Parque Amigos de Marti, is owned by the Cuban government; the park contains soil from each of the provinces of Cuba and houses a statue of Jose Marti.

  • Tampa is the home to "The All New Captain Kangaroo" and "Jack Hanna's Animal Adventures." Both shows are produced here in cooperation with Busch Gardens. Tampa's Mayor Dick Greco officially declared Aug. 5 as "All-New Captain Kangaroo Day" in the city.

  • AAA rated Tampa among the top five winter vacation destinations in the United States.

  • The Tampa Bay area ranks as the largest television market in the state and the 15th largest among the top television markets in the nation.

  • Tampa International Airport, at 25 years old, ranks number-one among the nation's 36 biggest airports, according to the Airline Passengers Association. TIA's domestic passenger traffic posted a 14 percent increase for the fiscal year of 1996, pushing the passenger volume over the 13 million mark. Last year, during the 12 months ending January, 12.8 million passengers moved through TIA.

  • Tampa International Airport ranks ninth among 29 of the largest U.S. airports for on-time departures.

  • The Port of Tampa ranks as the 11th largest U.S. port in terms of total annual cargo tonnage and is the largest port in Florida, handling more than 50 percent of the state's tonnage. Total annual economic impact of the port on the local economy is $10.6 billion. Domestic cargo at the Port of Tampa includes petroleum, ammonia, phosphate, rock, scrap metal, sulfur and phosphate chemicals.

  • The Tampa Bay region has been named the number one market in the south for expansions and relocations by Southern Business & Development magazine.

  • Southern Business & Development magazine ranked Southern metro areas on how many major corporate expansions and relocations were announced last year that promised more than 500 new jobs over a three year period. With 13, the Tampa Bay area ranked No.1.

  • Places Almanac rated the Tampa area as the 8th best place to live.

  • Hillsborough County has over 2,500 farms that produce agricultural products with a gross annual value of more than $400 million.

  • Dun & Bradstreet's Annual Ranking for Small Business ranked Tampa Bay 8 among the top 10 spots in the nation.

  • Hillsborough County ranks first nationally in the production of tropical fish; 90 percent of the tropical fish found in aquariums nationwide were raised in Tampa.

  • Tampa is home to one of the oldest and largest Spanish restaurants in the world. The Columbia Restaurant opened in 1905 and is a city-block long.

  • Hispanic magazine named the Columbia Restaurant in its 1998 top 50 list. One of only three restaurants in Florida.

  • Bern's Steak House in Tampa has the largest working wine cellar in the world.

  • St. Joseph's Hospital is the state's second-largest public hospital. It recently opened a $3.3 million, 32,000-square-foot Children's Medical Center that offers more than 26 pediatric specialty services.

  • Byways magazine ranked Tampa number 36 of the top fifty Motorcoach Destination Cities in the country.

  • Known as the world's longest sidewalk, Bayshore Boulevard borders Tampa Bay for 4.5 miles without a break. Joggers, walkers, skaters, and bikers frequent it. The scenic, and sometimes busy, venue is quite a meeting place for athletic people. Beautiful Bayshore Boulevard was named one of AAA's "Top Roads" for its panoramic view, park like setting and architectural features to accommodate motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians with equal facility.

  • The first Florida brewery was built in Tampa in 1897. It was named the Florida Brewing Company.

  • Tampa is home to Busch Gardens, a family style African-themed entertainment park featuring more than 3,000 animals. Busch Gardens was listed as one of the top ten attractions in the country by Byways magazine.

  • Busch Garden's roller coasters, Montu and Kumba, captured the third and fourth places among the top 25 steel roller coasters in the United States in Amusement Today Magazine.

  • A Tampa native, actress and supermodel Lauren Hutton, attended Chamberlain High School and the University of South Florida before landing her first modeling job.

  • Famous rhythm and blues singer and pianist Ray Charles began his career playing dance-hall gigs in Tampa. In 1990, Charles received an honorary degree in music from the University of South Florida.

  • An Ybor City native, Al Lopez, nicknamed "El Senor," in 1977 was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Lopez spent 18 years as a catcher with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Brooklyn Dodgers and Boston Braves before spending 17 years as a manager with the Chicago White Sox and Cleveland Indians.

  • The first incumbent president to visit Tampa was President John F. Kennedy. He visited Tampa in November, 1963, to salute the aviation progress over the past 50 years and to address the annual meeting of the Florida State Chamber of Commerce.

  • Tampa is the only city that is invaded by pirates each year. In 1997, Tampa's Gasparilla Pirate Fest -- invasion of pirates -- was recognized by Events Business News as one of the most unique festivals in the country. In addition, the American Bus Association named Gasparilla one of the top 100 festivals in the country -- only one other Florida festival was given this honor. The festival continues to grow and capture national and international media attention.

  • Tampa is known as the "Big Guava." Guavas are yellow, pear-shaped tropical fruits found here in Tampa. Ybor City guava delicacies include guava jelly, guava paste, and pickled guavas, which are usually displayed in the area's guava cooking contests.

  • Ybor City's Fiesta Day was named as one of the top 20 events in the South by Southeast Tourism Society.

  • Tampa's Sant' Yago Illuminated Night Parade was voted the largest and most beautiful night parade in the South and one of the Top 10 parades in the Southeast by Suncoast Magazine.

  • The only warm Weather City with this distinction, Tampa is of the top ten markets for ice cream consumption in the United States.



Same view zoomed out