Thank-you for all your messages, emails and notes about my previous post about my Italian Christmas. It seems that I am not the only one on my way to Italy for Christmas. Sounds like lots of you are planning an Italian Christmas and you need some help..
One of the questions I am frequently asked about Florence (where I lived for 5 years) is where to stay. During my years in Florence I had the chance to photograph many beautiful hotels and had the great fortune to get to know some of their owners and managers well. Florence has a high concentration of gorgeous design hotels, many made-over by the clever Architect Michele Bonan.
So for those of you heading to Florence this Chrismas and wanted to know where to stay in spetcular style here are Carla’s faves!!!!
1. JK Place
Copyright JK Place
The clever and talented Ori Kafri slept in as many rooms possible in as many glamorous hotels around the world before planning his gorgeous hotel, JK Place. Like a chic gentleman’s residence in the heart of Florence JK Place is an art and design lover’s haven. Tucked away in a corner of Piazza Santa Maria Novella you are in walking distance of everything you wll need in florence.
Copyright Hotel Gallery Art
Hotel Gallery Art was revolutionary in Florence when it opened. It was Florence’s first design Hotel and in a rockstar location, a quiet Piazza right next to the Ponte Vecchio.
The other great thing I love about Hotel Gallery Art is the art collection. Serious contemporary art and photography is exhibited in the downstairs Gallery and the public are encourage to come on in and view the works.
They also have an incredible ‘aperitivo’ in their bar around twilight….Chic locals abound.
3. Continentale Florence
Copyright Continentale Florence
Continentale has a 50’s twist to their design. In the same Piazza as the Hotel Gallery Art Continentale has without a doubt some of the best views in Florence, a bird’s eye view of the Ponte Vecchio. Designed by the clever Michele Bonan who also designed JK Place and Hotel Gallery Art.
Copyright Carla Coulson
If your pockets are full of cash this Christmas and you want to stay in not only Florence’s most luxurious hotel but also in it’s most historic head straight for the Four Seasons Hotel in Florence. Formely Palazzo Gheradesca, home to the Florentine noble family of the same name has all the trimmings you would expect of a Florentine palazzo – handpainted frescoes, original handpainted wallpapers, grand staircases and incredible grounds. I love this building and the designer kept the wonderful original features. The entrance on Borgo Pinti hides hectares of park with four hundred year old trees.
Copyright Hotel Dei Macchioli
If your budget can’t take all the above hotels you might like to try the Hotel dei Macchioli. I recently stayed here with my sister and her husband and found this hotel delightful.
In an historic building with an incredible painted wooden ceiling Hotel dei Macchioli is two steps away from the Duomo and had lovely recently renovated rooms.
They give themselves 3 stars (probably because of the flight of stairs to the reception but the delightful staff will carry your bags)..but by Italian hotel standards my guess it is more like a 4 star..
For all of you who won’t be visiting Italy this Christmas I hope you enjoyed this little virtual tour of Florence. And for those of you dreaming of Italy you might like to check out my Italian Christmas List.