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Sara DiNatale - Retail, tourism and workplace culture reporter

Retail, tourism and workplace culture reporter

I’m a Buffalo native who has been thawing out in Florida since joining the Tampa Bay Times in 2015. I started as a night cops reporter in Tampa. But these days, I’m running to new grocery stores instead of crime scenes. As our retail, tourism and workplace culture reporter, I’m able to use my sleuth-shopper skill set and eye for trends combined with my favorite pastime, telling stories. I search out topics I know will resonate with readers and get them thinking or talking. I’m a coupon clipper, yogi novice and eyeglasses enthusiast. You’ll rarely spot me on the weekend without my mini schnauzer, Addy, in tow. We’re regulars at St. Petersburg’s Dog Bar and the area’s several dog parks. So feel free to say hi or give us a news tip. Addy gives great high-fives.

  1. WeWork is opening Tampa offices at 501 E Kennedy Blvd. despite company struggles, including $1.25 billion in losses over 2019.
    WeWork has 200 planned coworking space openings as leadership tries to manage $1.25 billion in losses.
  2. Sam's Club fulfillment center manager Nick Barbieri explains to a shopper how the new Scan & Go shop works at 5135 S Dale Mabry Highway.
    Shoppers in Tampa Bay can now skip the line and cash out alcohol on their own phones.
  3. A rendering of the planned Pinstripes bowling, bocce and bistro space that is planned to open at International Plaza alongside a Cinemex in spring 2021.
    In addition to upscale bowling and movies, there will also be bocce ball and a bistro.
  4. Cigar aficionado Kellan Webster, 48, from Conway, S.C., visits King Corona Cigars Bar and Cafe in Ybor City for the first time. The historic spot will now soon have a sister location at International Plaza. [Times (2017)]
    The Ybor staple has been under new ownership since 2017.
  5. A photo of the the sold-out crowd in New Jersey's MetLife Stadium, which hosted 2019's WrestleMania. Tampa will host WrestleMania at Raymond James Stadium in April 2020.
    The super bowl of wrestling will come to Raymond James Stadium on April 5.
  6. Shoppers walk into the Kmart in Kenneth City, which will close by the start of 2020. By February, Florida will only have four Kmarts left.
    What’s the future of Kmart and Sears in the Sunshine State after the latest round of closures?
  7. Patrons eat lunch and cool off inside of the Community Cafe during the St. Pete Pride Street Festival along Central Ave. in St. Petersburg. [LUIS SANTANA | TIMES]
    The cafe known for its drag queen story hours and community mission says landlords won’t renew its lease. Now, it’s searching for a new space.
  8. A rendering of the new Warby Parker scheduled to open at International Plaza in Tampa on Nov. 16.
    The new eyeglasses store at International Plaza is designed to look and feel like a library.
  9. A water-soluble CBD product is offered at the Your CBD Store in Largo. Winn-Dixie announced this week it, too, would start selling CBD products.  [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
    Nearly two dozen local Winn-Dixies will have CBD oils, creams and pet products.
  10. Merchandise team manager William Nash, of St. Petersburg, uses a virtual reality (VR) system to navigate a virtual living room while selecting a carpet for the space from a database of tens of thousands of interior items with the assistance of sales associate Amber Lischka, background, while learning the new decorating tool on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, at Macy's at Countryside Mall in Clearwater. Marexent, a St. Petersburg based software development company, created the software to aid in room design and the sale of interior furniture for retailers.
    Marxent has designed the program Macy’s and La-Z-Boy use to create virtual rooms for their customers to try out furniture and decor.