Smashing deal in a 19th century building! – 4 star – Florence

Close to some of the most iconic historical landmarks in the inimitable Renaissance city of Florence, this is a smashing deal in a 19th century building, divided into respectfully renovated suite apartments each fitted with a flat screen LCD TV, climate control, free high speed Wi-Fi, kitchen area and whirlpool style bath. Onsite hotel facilities include valet parking, 24 hour concierge, dry cleaning service, airport shuttle service and car rental desk. Those after rest and relaxation can take advantage of the hotel’s health club which features a spa, sauna, pool and fitness suite.

The hotel’s enviable location within Florence’s historic heart enables guests to explore the city’s main landmarks on foot. Just a short walk to the banks of the Arno River is the unique Ponte Vecchio bridge, famous for the row of shops built into the bridge structure itself. During the medieval times the bridge shops were used as butcheries but have now been transformed into upmarket jewellers, art dealers and souvenir shops popular with tourists. Also in the area is another one of Florence’s most iconic sights, the Palazzo Vecchio town hall. Famous for its stunning Romanesque architecture and prominence overlooking the Piazza della Signoria, the Palazzo is open to the public to view its ornate State Apartments and historical antiquities.

Just a stone’s throw from the palazzo is the Basilica di Santa Croce, one of city’s most popular basilicas alongside the Duomo and Santa Maria Novella. The church is renowned as the Temple of the Italian Glories for being the final resting place of illustrious Italian artists and sculptors such as Michelangelo, Machiavelli and Galileo. The basilica is the largest Franciscan church in the world and also features a unique monument dedicated to Florence Nightingale.

Visible from across the city and often regarded as one of the enduring symbols of Florence, the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore is a must-see for any tourist. Simply known as Il Duomo by some, the basilica boasts an instantly recognisable dome as well as colourful frescoes and intricate exterior facades. Alongside the adjacent Giotto’s Campanile and Baptistery the Florence Cathedral has been granted UNESCO World Heritage Site status and is one of the most visited attractions in all of Tuscany. The streets neighbouring the Piazza del Duomo are lined with exclusive premium boutiques and high end Italian fashion retailers, perfect for fashionistas or those just after a souvenir.