Shangri-La Springs is a historic property in Bonita Springs, Florida.
The initial building on the property was built in 1921 as a small hotel to accommodate potential buyers for a local real estate development. The property changed hands many times over the years. Its mineral springs became a health-related focus for osteopathic and homeopathic owners.
The present owners acquired the property in 1998. Their focus was preservationist, but also to expand the holistic and naturalistic vision of some of the former owners of Shangri-La. This is done partially through visual and performance arts. In addition, various classes featuring yoga, dance and meditation complement the artistic endeavors.
As you enter the main building, you continue onto a very aesthetically pleasing lounge area with beautiful wooden floors restored from the original structure and a very relaxing, homey feel. If you go through the building to it’s exterior, there is a very nice courtyard, and if you continue on there is a short, but scenic path through the property, and a magnificent Mysore Fig tree, one of the few in Southwest Florida.
The culinary arts play a very big roll here. Chef Pyro Rodriguez was recently brought on board to feature foods that are both farm and boat to table as well as non-GMO and organic. To this end, Rodriguez uses local vendors such as Inyoni Farms, Circle C Farms and Southern Alaska Seafood from Colorado.
Shangri-La Springs features a beautiful dining area that is open for lunch from 11:30a to 2:30p , Monday-Friday.
I came here a couple of times to sample some of the items off their menu. The first thing ordered was the beets.
The Coho salmon entree followed.
On my first visit, they were sold out of pork so I ordered the chicken dish. This was, also, very good. Sous-vide cooked chicken breast was served atop a bed of couscous and topped with Sauce Vert
On my second visit I tried the pork. Braised pork was served with a purple potato/polenta mixture, topped with lemongrass and fennel foam and served with mole sauce. This was delicious and my favorite entree of the three.
The kitchen also grows produce on site to complement its farm to table vision. As these pictures were taken in mid-summer, there is not a lot growing here. It’s a different story in the fall and winter, and the property is expanding this endeavor to perhaps supply most of the produce needs of the restaurant.
The food at Shangri-La is very good, served in a pleasant atmosphere on one of the most historic properties in Southwest Florida. As the gardens and the patronage of the property expand in the winter months, I cannot wait to see what good things continue to come from Shangri-La.
That’s that for another post on Forks.
27750 Old 41 Rd., Bonita Springs, Florida
Copyright 2016 South Florida Reporter