LocationsAll our holiday apartments are located in the San Giovanni district, right in the centre of Florence, and are situated in elegant palazzi that have seen the history of the city unwind. Whichever location you may choose, you will always be close to some of the most famous monuments, restaurants, shops and haunts. The other districts, of which we give a brief description below, are all easy to reach on foot or bicycle.
Listed as a Unesco World heritage site, the centre of Florence is ideally divided into four historic districts which take their name from one of the churches in the district and are distinguished by the colours and symbols of their coats of arms.
Situated in the north-east of the city, the San Giovanni district owes its name to the Baptistery of the same name which, together with the Basilica of Santa Maria del Fiore and Giotto’s Campanile, is part of the monumental Duomo complex. Just a short distance away, in the direction of the Santa Maria Novella area, is the Church of San Lorenzo surrounded by a colourful market and the Medici Chapels. In this area there is a variety of restaurants and haunts where you can enjoy typical traditional Florentine cuisine. Passing through San Lorenzo market you arrive at the Mercato Centrale where you can buy genuine products to prepare at home, for an informal meal or as good quality street food.
Continuing in a northerly direction you come to piazza San Marco with the Galleria dell’Accademia, piazza Santissima Annunziata and the Spedale degli Innocenti. Heading towards the river Arno you cross Via dei Calzaiuoli and arrive in Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery.
Santa Maria Novella
Situated to the north-east of the city, the district takes its name from the Church of Santa Maria Novella immediately adjacent to the central railway station. The district stretches out towards the river Arno and boasts numerous attractions like the Alinari Museum, the streets where the Florentine antique dealers sell their wares, Via Tornabuoni with its luxury articles and Palazzo Strozzi. In the Santa Maria Novella district is the Santa Trinita bridge, from where one can enjoy one of the finest views of Ponte Vecchio. In the vicinity are numerous Tuscan trattorie and along the river some interesting bars offering aperitifs. Further away from the centre one comes to the Fortezza da Basso, the venue of numerous fairs, the new OF theatre, the seat of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and the Cascine, Florence’s biggest park.
The only district that extends over both sides of the river Arno; it gets its name from the main monument in the area, the church of Santa Croce. Inside the church are the tombs of famous artists and scientists of Renaissance Florence: Machiavelli, Alfieri, Galileo and Michelangelo. In the nearby area of Sant’Ambrogio another traditional indoor food market and several night spots. On the other side of the river one can enjoy the most famous view of the city by climbing up to Piazzale Michelangelo and Forte Belvedere. The San Niccolo area, just below the piazzale, is scattered with restaurants, taverns and other haunts serving typical meals to tourists together with aperitifs and live music.
Santo Spirito is the district “on the other side” of the Arno and stretches out around the piazza of the same name which was originally an area where the Augustinian monks used to preach but is now one of the most frequented places for night life with a variety of restaurants and other haunts. In this district is the famous Palazzo Pitti with Boboli Gardens, but also the Museo di Scienze Naturali della Specola.