Posts Tagged ‘things to do in florence’

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Happy Capodanno Fiorentino!

For most of the people from all over the world, a year ends the 31st December and the following one begins the 1st January. Apparently there is nothing more to say about that but, in fact, there is a special custom in Florence that comes straight from the city’s history. We are talking about the Capodanno Fiorentino, celebrated each year on March 25th. Want to know its origin? Let us move back to the past.

The truth is that it was not until 1750 that Florence started to celebrate the New Year’s Day on January 1st. According to the tradition, Florence is devoted to the Virgin Mary and the festivity was set on March because the date was exactly nine month before the birth of Jesus Christ. Centuries went by, but people in Florence kept their tradition. If you are in the city this next week, then you will be able to enjoy the New Year’s arrival again!

By now there are two scheduled events for next Monday 25th: at 3:30 p.m. the Corteo Storico della Repubblica will go with the community authorities to the Basilica della Santissima Annunziata. Later, at 4:15 p.m., a floral tribute will be paid to the Cappella della Sacra effige dell’Annunziata. And by the way, the Palazzo Vecchio will be open all day long. So, from Il Salviatino, your luxury hotel in Florence, we hope you enjoy the Capodanno and we wish you a happy ‘new’ year!

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The ‘forever-young’ side of Florence

So many things have been said about the artistic dimension of Florence. Of course, culture is fantastic since it nourishes the soul, but sometimes you need to let go and just have fun. So what else has the city to offer? Besides visiting museums and monuments you can also do lots of activities in order to have a lovely stay.

The Tuscan capital is one of the fashion centers in the world. Therefore releasing your ‘buying self’ could be a good (¿or dangerous?) option. As well as boutiques like Gucci’s and Versace’s, there are some attractive street markets like the Mercato di San Lorenzo, near San Lorenzo’s Church, where you can find cool clothes, specifically for women. Inside of it you can have a walk through the Mercato Centrale, filled with delicious Tuscan gastronomy specialties.

If you start feeling like partying, you should know where to begin the night. You can have a drink at pubs as Fiddler’s Elbow or Mojo, both quite famous in town, and then go dancing to Andromeda, Yab or Central Park, some of the most important clubs in Florence. If you’re hungover the next day, you can recover with some fresh air by going picnic to Le Cascine, the biggest park in Florence.

These are only a few possibilities from the hundred ones between you can choose. But whatever you do, Il Salviatino, your luxury hotel in Florence, will be there for you.

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Salvador Dalí brings surrealism to Florence

Once upon a time there was a man whose use of colors, shapes and metaphors through painting was unique. He became one of the most famous contemporary artists in the world. In fact, whether you know him or not, if you ever see one of his works, you won’t stay impassive. After this introduction, we confess we are amazed that Florence is paying tribute to Salvador Dalí by showing an exhibition of more than 100 pieces made by the Spanish author.

dali-2From February 1st to May 25th the Palazzo Medici Riccardi will be open daily, from 9 am to 7 pm, inviting everyone to leave logic outside and let dreamlike traces invade their minds. The sculptures, glass objects and collages exposed present sides of Dalí’s personality perhaps less known by the audience, as well as his interest in themes like time, literature and women.

So, from Il Salviatino, your 5 stars hotel in Florence, we ask you: Are you ready to let the Dalí experience rock your day?

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Florence: scenario of La Fura dels Baus’ Carmina Burana

For decades Carmina Burana has been one of the most famous Scenic Cantatas in the world. Composed by Carl Orff between 1935 and 1936, the masterpiece includes few of the original texts written among the 11th and the 13th centuries, beautiful poems about life, love, nature and pleasure. In 2009, the Spanish Theatre Company, La Fura dels Baus, created their own rendition of the Cantata, becoming a great success and captivating the enthusiasm of the audience. That’s why it’s thrilling to inform that La Fura’s Carmina Burana is coming to Florence!


The Indian conductor of classical music, Zubin Mehta, will be directing the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino’s Choir and Orchestra while the performing artists join a whole show of lights and colors that will leave the crowd speechless. So, if you’re about to open your mind and go through a fascinating experience, don’t forget going to Il Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, next Friday 8th February at 8.30 pm.

From Il Salviatino, your 5 stars hotel in Florence, we encourage you to enjoy the spectacle and let the art take your breath away.

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Vogue Fashion’s Night Out 2012, Florence.

A very special and glamorous night will arrive to the cradle of the Renaissance next 18th of September: Vogue Fashion’s Night Out. A whole evening dedicated to fashion and shopping, with shops open all night long, special events and so much glamour.

On its fourth edition, the VFNO arrives for the first time in Florence loaded with enthusiasm  and good taste. Its focus point will inevitably be in Florence’s fashion triangle: Via Tornabuoni, via della Vigna Nuova e Via degli Strozzi.

However, not everything aims to be glitter and sequins, the VFNO is also social commitment. The money collected during the past editions has served to support urban projects willing to revitalize the host cities. Furthermore, in this year’s edition, the proceeds of sales will go to the earthquake victims of the province of Emilia.

An event willing to make every single one participate and make part of it, not only fashion lovers. With the collaboration of the Comune di Firenze, everyone will get the opportunity to enjoy Florence under a different atmosphere, a magical one. A similar one to the one you may find at Il Salviatino, your luxury hotel in Florence.

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Discover a different city: Florence in August

August: holidays, good weather, travelling, no stress, no work and…Florence! Don’t let yourself down if you encounter notices like  “chiuso per ferie” (closed for holidays) and enjoy a different Florence in August, one you will not find any different time of the year.

In Italy, August is the key month to go on for a holiday, which means that many Florentines rush off to the beach and mountain leaving their city and transforming it into a peaceful oasis. Even though it’s hard to witness a decline of tourists in Florence any time of the year, the city exudes a more tranquil and calm atmosphere in general.

With the upcoming of the summer, Tuscany’s capital makes the most of its Mediterranean good climate and sets up a series of different outdoor events to enrich your visit such as concerts, exhibitions and wine tastings. Natural open air spaces turn into stages, scenarios for social encounters, refreshing settings and offer a series of activities only possible under good weather.

Overview of Florence from Il Salviatino.

Overview of Florence from Il Salviatino.

Important buildings and monuments stretch out their schedules up until summer midnight. This is the case for example of beautiful and enigmatic Palazzo Vecchio that, together with its Torre d’Arnolfo stands majestically in Piazza della Signoria. If the day is hot, no alarm. Florence offers a range of different green areas such as lovely parks and gardens that will enable you to enjoy a refreshing promenade amongst Tuscan flora.

Needles to say is that Il Salviatino, your luxury hotel in Florence, will be waiting for you in August with cool pools, tasteful aperitivi, inviting terraces with breathtaking panoramas, and much more.

Come and discover with us a different Florence in August!

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Shopping in Florence.

Apart from being one of the most romantic cities in Italy, the cradle of the Renaissance and an outstanding scenario for open air festivals, Florence turns out to be one of the main centres for shopping in Italy. Whether you’re looking for traditional products or either stylish Italian fashion, Tuscany’s capital proves itself as a shopper’s paradise.

For those interested in getting soaked in local culture and Italian traditions, Florence offers a wide range of different markets throughout its many squares. The perfect encounter with real life. One of the most popular ones is San Lorenzo’s market which takes over Piazza San Lorenzo, alongside San Lorenzo Church. At this busy street market you can purchase some excellent leather goods, jewellery and clothing. The Mercato Centrale and the Mercato Nuovo make up a good example of beautiful Italian architecture. From the 19h and 14th century respectively, the Mercato Centrale is well known for its food stalls and the Mercato Nuovo for its fantastic and varied leather and straw work.

However, if you’re highly interested in tendencies and the latest Italian fashion, via Tornabuoni will satisfy your wishes. The one location where the more outstanding Italian designers can be found. From Armani to Ferragamo going through Prada are only some of the luxury names you will encounter.

If, on the other hand, you really appreciate artisan work, the Oltrarno quarter, typically known for neighbourhoods like Santo Spirito and San Frediano, is a good example of Florence’s pride in craftsmanship. The “botteghe” (workshops) where craftsmen work make part of the city life. Just to name a couple, in this area you may find: Antico Setificio Fiorentino, famous for its silk production, and Stefano Bemer, expert on hand made men shoes. Both renowned worldwide for their excellence. Also, antiques, furniture or home accessories are  a sum of what Florentine craftsman have to offer. However, we cannot leave behind Ponte Vecchio’s ultra famous jewellery shops, specialists in their delicate gold designs. A glittering spectacle of the most refined jewels.

As can be observed, there’s a Florence for everyone. As there is also a 5 star hotel in Florence willing to welcome each and every single one, Il Salviatino.

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Relax in Florence

Florence is certainly one of the most recognized cities worldwide for its beauty, artistic value and architectural heritage, a place of pilgrimage for art lovers in its purest form. But Florence is also an ideal destination to spend a few days off and enjoy the unique environment the Italian Tuscany has to offer.

The beauty of its streets and squares transmits  real magic. It offers a host of charming places to discover and invites one to stroll down and have an appetizer in its famous taverns along the Arno River, as well as, to enjoy a glass of chianti, the typical red wine in this area.

View from Hotel Il Salviatino in Florence

View from Hotel Il Salviatino in Florence

Furthermore, with the arrival of spring,  Florence is revealed at its best through its gardens. The gardens are in full bloom which can be found along the entire town during this season. An inevitable stop at this point is the Boboli Gardens, located behind the Pitti Palace. It has  a total area of ​​45,000 square meters, which makes it the largest green area of Florence. Here, guests can visit the statue of the Goddess Fortuna or the Neptune Fountain and the beautiful lake that lies within.

The Giardino dell’Iris (Iris Garden) also proves to be an ideal route in the springtime. Symbol of the city of Florence since 1251, the Iris is the real star of this botanical garden which hosts more than 1,500 varieties of this flower. This can be all admired and appreciated together with the stunning views of the entire city.

Finally, to conclude your rest and pleasurable stay, there’s nothing better than to relax completely at the new Spa Il Salviatino, at your 5- star hotel in Florence. It offers a variety of treatments specifically created to balance body and mind in a state of total harmony. The “Relax and enjoy Florence” package is the perfect choice for those wishing to enjoy a massage with vegetable oils and antioxidants or a thousands-years old relaxation technique using the essence of Egyptian jasmine and a touch of mint to recover energy. It also includes a full tasting of Tuscan cuisine enabling guests to enjoy the holiday without having to worry about anything else.

In short, if you are looking for a few days of peace and tranquility, Florence is revealed as the perfect place to enjoy moments of rest and relaxation in a unique space.

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The Vasari Corridor, a magical tour of Florence

One of the great architectural gems with a history full of curiosities and anecdotes in the city of Florence is, without a doubt, the Vasari Corridor. Built in just five months by the architect Giorgio Vasari,  the Vasari Corridor is an elevated and enclosed passageway almost a thousand meters in length  and crosses the main points of the city.

Cosimo I de Medici  ordered to build this endless hallway to link Palazzo Pitti, the official residence of the Medici, with the Florentine nobility’s government headquarters, the Palazzo Vecchio. This decision was triggered  by the Grand Duke’s to avoid unending and tiresome  trips through the streets of the city. Moreover, these long walks through the city had to be done with guards and escorts to prevent possible attacks.

The corridor passes through the Ponte Vecchio

The corridor passes through the Ponte Vecchio

That is why the corridor passes through one of the most emblematic sites of the city, the Ponte Vecchio. It is one of the most visited places because of the stunning view over the River Arno.  According to legend, the Florentine Duke ordered the demolition of butcher shops that were housed in this part of the walkway because of foul odor and so today one can still see the goldsmiths and jewelers which took their place back then.

The Vasari Corridor was also a stopping point for soldiers and combatants during the Second World War, and crosses one of the most interesting places to visit in Florence: the Uffizi Gallery. It is considered one of the most important museums in the world and it is home to works of art, such as Rubens, Bernini and Delacroix self-portraits that could be the cause of Stendhal syndrome.

In short, the Vasari Corridor is one of those places with real magic in the beautiful Florence. Il Salviatino, your 5 star hotel in Florence, invites you to enjoy the city and feel the authenticity of places like the Vasari Corridor.

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Live Florence like a true Florentine

A city like Florence, known as the city of Renaissance, frequently seduces the tourists with its countless breathtaking monuments. But for once it would be nice to give the museums a rest, get out of the tourists torrent and enjoy il dolce far niente in the Italian style.

If seeking the pleasure of experiencing Florence like a true Florentine its absolutely mandatory to choose either a trattoria or a osteria – traditional restaurant with typical Tuscan cuisine- instead of going to the usual famous restaurants that generally offer common-international dishes.

Fontana del Nettuno, Florence

Fontana del Nettuno, Florence

The Markets in Florence are charming places to wonder around searching for a particular thing or just getting lost among the unique pieces of history exposed in the stands. Most tourists prefer without a trace of doubt to visit the famous Mercato delle Pulci – yes, the Flea Market- but for a deeper understanding of the Florentine daily life it’s advisable to choose other local markets like San Lorenzo Market, La Fierucolina, or Mercato Centrale.

All over the world Italy is well known for its expertise in Ice-cream making. And true as it is, stepping on Italian soil and leave without tasting a true gelato wouldn’t be fair. In Florence having a gelato as desert or as a treat in a sunny day is very typical, and to do so there are various Ice-cream parlors all over the city, like the Festival del Gelato or Cavini. Creamy consistence, the taste of real fresh fruit, and a mesmerizing variety of flavors… the perfect combination of factors to transform a simple sweet treat in a delicious event.

Italians, or better said humans in general, for some reason find a special joy in what is called “people watching”, which is nothing but simply choosing a bench in a crowded piazza and watching people pass by. Tourists taking pictures, locals rushing to go to work, some clearly in honeymoon mode, while others struggling to get the kids to school.

It is definitely fun to be the tourist, but just for once Il Salviatino, your luxury hotel in Florence, recommends you to admire Florence through a different perspective. Like a true Florentine.

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