ISO: Florence Hotel Recommendations

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Arif F
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ISO: Florence Hotel Recommendations

#1 Post by Arif F » March 26th, 2014, 10:28 am

I'm going to be in Florence with the wife for two nights first weekend of May and need to book a hotel. We want to be in centro storico. Any suggestions?

Having done some cursory research this weekend seems to be a popular one (Four Seasons is $1200+ per night!, which is crazy IMO). Some of the places I have my eye on and are within budget (<$500 per night, which is still a punch in the face) are Hotel Helvetia & Bristol, Hotel Lungarno, Relais Santa Croce, Gallery Art hotel, NH Porta Rossa, Continentale & Palazzo Vecchietti - any thoughts (thumbs up or down) on any these would be appreciated as would recommendations on others.


Grazie!
Last edited by Arif F on March 26th, 2014, 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#2 Post by mark rudner » March 26th, 2014, 10:47 am

had good luck last 2 or 3 visits with the savoy (rocco forte) on the piazza della republica. central location and a cool hotel with a couple of coffee places/bars in the square (gilli is the one i like)
fwiw, last visit was @ 5 years ago

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#3 Post by Neal.Mollen » March 26th, 2014, 10:49 am

If you are thinking 4 Seasons territory I have no suggestions.

However, a number of years ago, we stayed at the Hotel Morandi -- a very small place in a perfect neighborhood -- and found it charming, comfortable, friendly and really perfect for our needs. The owners were Brit expats who had been living in Florence for decades and knew every nook and cranny. I would not hesitate to stay there again.

The site: http://hotelmorandi.it/

We stayed in the room that is on slide #2, I think. Had french doors opening onto a small little patio. Just lovely
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#4 Post by M.Kaplan » March 26th, 2014, 10:55 am

Over the past 10 years, my wife and I have stayed five times at the Palazzo Niccolini al Duomo (http://www.niccolinidomepalace.com/?lang=eng). The Niccolini family, who own the Palazzo adjacent to the Piazza al Duomo, has created a 9 room hotel that occupies parts of three floors of the Palazzo. Breakfast service, no restaurant. The rooms are decorated with original frescoes and period furniture. It is a wonderful place to stay and should be within your budget, depending on your room choice.
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#5 Post by Brian King » March 26th, 2014, 11:33 am

I also stayed at the Savoy (like Mark) and really enjoyed it. Great location and the rooms were nice and modern.

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#6 Post by Jim Friedman » March 26th, 2014, 12:14 pm

I have stayed at the Continental twice and enjoyed it very much. Great location.

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#7 Post by Arif F » March 26th, 2014, 12:41 pm

Mark K, Mark R & Brian,

Some great suggestions thank you; unfortunately both the Savoy ($750+) and Niccolini ($550+) are out of budget (see what I mean about a bad time to go!).

Please keep them coming!
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Arif F
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#8 Post by Arif F » March 26th, 2014, 12:43 pm

Jim Friedman wrote:I have stayed at the Continental twice and enjoyed it very much. Great location.
Hi Jim,
Thanks, this is great to know. How recently have you stayed there?
Cheers,
Arif
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#9 Post by Neal.Mollen » March 26th, 2014, 12:53 pm

Arif F wrote:Mark K, Mark R & Brian,

Some great suggestions thank you;
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#10 Post by Arif F » March 26th, 2014, 1:52 pm

Neal.Mollen wrote:
Arif F wrote:Mark K, Mark R & Brian,

Some great suggestions thank you;
Hey! pepsi pileon [soap.gif] [stirthepothal.gif] [smileyvault-ban.gif]

Whoops, yes, thank you Neal, I like this place. Looks great and very reasonably priced, just was wanting less of a B&B and more of a hotel - we'll be at a B&B in the countryside after and wife wants a hotel in Florence.
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#11 Post by Jim Friedman » March 26th, 2014, 2:26 pm

Both trips were about 10 years ago. I know they have done at least one remodelling since then. Friends stayed there recently and loved it.

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#12 Post by Stu Fishler » March 26th, 2014, 3:25 pm

Arif- two summers ago we stayed at Il Guelfo Bianco and enjoyed it; centrally located, affiliated with the bar next door so we could charge drinks to our room and enjoy them on the hotel's patio.

Priced in the $300s vs the $500s for the Palazzo Vecchietti, for example. a quick study at Tripadvisors.com shows PV as the 2nd best specialty accomodation in Florence and the IGB the 9th best hotel.
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#13 Post by Howard Davis » March 26th, 2014, 7:53 pm

Firenze is my favourite city in the world to visit, I have visited half a dozen times since 1999. I like clean, characterful, 2-3 star hotels, centrally located in the centro storico, so handy to the sights.

In Firenze I normally stay at Hotel Due Fontane on the nicest square in Florence, between the Duomo and San Marco (so, handy):

http://www.leduefontane.it/uk/indexhome.htm

(I haven't checked its rating on trip advisor but have always found it good. Three star.). If you stay ask for a room facing the square.

I have also stayed at, and liked, Hotel Porta Rossa, a grand old hotel, one of the oldest in Italy. Central, not far from the Palazzo Vecchio. Four star, so probably more expensive:

http://nhportarossa.hotelinfirenze.com/

Another probably cheaper three star option my mother stayed at last year is:

http://www.delletelehotel.com/

She swears by it, it is close to the railway station, safe and clean.

Have a great time!

Howard
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#14 Post by jdietz » March 26th, 2014, 9:38 pm

We are staying in Florence 3 nights in May and rented a nice apartment right near the Duomo. We used Waytostay.com, but we've used Flipkey in the past, too.

We've found that the convenience of having a kitchen and a bedroom make even a stay of a few days better than a hotel, especially if traveling with kids. Our 10 days in Paris in October in an apartment was outstanding. We are looking forward to the same in Venice and Florence.
Cheers, James

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#15 Post by RS Beck » March 26th, 2014, 10:18 pm

Check this place out. Have stayed there several times. In my view, it's hard to beat for the combination of charm, location, convenience, price, amenities, and the rooftop terrace overlooking the Duomo and the Florence skyline.

http://www.hotelbaglioni.it/index_eng.html
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#16 Post by Marc Yamawaki » March 26th, 2014, 10:56 pm

I stayed at Albergotto Hotel in 2009. Nice hotel, but no view. It was reasonably priced too.

Doing a quick search, it seems like it changed to Room Mate Isabella, or maybe just the name?
http://isabella.room-matehotels.com
It's ranked pretty high on trip advisor.

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#17 Post by Ken V » March 27th, 2014, 12:17 pm

Stayed at this placed 29 years ago. It was very nice. Looks like it still is:

http://www.hotelprincipe.com/

Great garden in the back, right on the river and close to the Ponte Vecchio.
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#18 Post by Paul Miller » March 27th, 2014, 12:32 pm

We stayed at the Westin St. Regis (their Excelsior property is across the street). Did it on points and then got an upgrade to some crazy ass suite. It was truly sweet. Nice, old school grand hotel. They are showing rates from 375Euro.

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#19 Post by Mike Cohen » March 27th, 2014, 12:39 pm

Although I haven't been there in a while, my wife and I absolutely loved the Lungarno. We had a room with a balcony that overlooked the Arno. I took a couple of postcard quality pictures from that balcony.

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#20 Post by Thomas Puricelli » March 27th, 2014, 6:41 pm

Mike Cohen wrote:Although I haven't been there in a while, my wife and I absolutely loved the Lungarno. We had a room with a balcony that overlooked the Arno. I took a couple of postcard quality pictures from that balcony.
Likewise.

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#21 Post by Ted Erfer » March 27th, 2014, 6:49 pm

Neal.Mollen wrote:If you are thinking 4 Seasons territory I have no suggestions.

However, a number of years ago, we stayed at the Hotel Morandi -- a very small place in a perfect neighborhood -- and found it charming, comfortable, friendly and really perfect for our needs. The owners were Brit expats who had been living in Florence for decades and knew every nook and cranny. I would not hesitate to stay there again.

The site: http://hotelmorandi.it/

We stayed in the room that is on slide #2, I think. Had french doors opening onto a small little patio. Just lovely
This is where we always stay -- not a B&B at all. This is just a smaller sized hotel.
And Frank Peters is sometimes working the desk --- he is THE BEST English speaking guide in Florence. You should book him for at least 1/2 day. The original owner of the Morandi was one of the British women featured in the movie Breakfast with Mussolini. She was also actually in the movie as well.

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#22 Post by geoffpm » March 28th, 2014, 4:24 am

spent 5 days at this wonderful budget hotel across form the medici museum and a block for the David and the central market - Owned by Somalian/italians who speak perfect english. Great service and easy to get anywhere

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review ... scany.html
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#23 Post by Howard Roselinsky » March 28th, 2014, 11:25 am

Loved the Lungarno. Room was top floor overlooking the Pitti Palace, opposite side of Arno River. Also, really loved the location of the hotel on opposite bank of the river. The hotel staff are wonderful, and the concierge was extremely helpful setting up anything and everything we ever asked.

Howard

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#24 Post by Richard Malloy » March 28th, 2014, 3:49 pm

Stu Fishler wrote:Arif- two summers ago we stayed at Il Guelfo Bianco and enjoyed it; centrally located, affiliated with the bar next door so we could charge drinks to our room and enjoy them on the hotel's patio.

Priced in the $300s vs the $500s for the Palazzo Vecchietti, for example. a quick study at Tripadvisors.com shows PV as the 2nd best specialty accomodation in Florence and the IGB the 9th best hotel.
I love this hotel. Love it, love it, love it. We've stayed there twice. A couple blocks from the Duomo, Uffizi, Academe, Palazzo Vecchio, all the stuff. Get a room overlooking the courtyard and awake every morning to birds singing and church bells ringing.

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#25 Post by Alan Rath » March 30th, 2014, 1:51 pm

I know you're not looking for B&B, but for anyone else reading, we stayed in a very nice one, quite private and quiet:
Panella's Residence
Via della Pergola nr 42
50121 FIRENZE (ITALIA)
http://www.panellaresidence.com

We had several nice meals, though didn't go to any of the "high end" places. The one restaurant I would strongly recommend is La Pentola dell'Oro: http://www.lapentoladelloro.it
Not particularly fancy, but really interesting and local food. The chef/owner was already up there in age (70s I think) when we were there in 2007, but from tripadvisor it looks like the place is still in business and doing well. I would highly recommend it.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_R ... scany.html

Another place we ate that we enjoyed:
Perseus restaurant for Bistecca Fiorentina. Fun place, nothing fancy, good food.
http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_R ... scany.html

Cantinetta Antinori - for lunch. This is a small restaurant that is part of the famous Antinori winery. Nice food, and you can get their top wines by the glass (not cheap, but very good). We had a fabulous, simple grilled asparagus plate that I can still taste :)
http://www.cantinetta-antinori.com

While I was searching, I found this site which looks to have pretty good descriptions and recommendations for restaurants
http://www.sallybernstein.com/food/dini ... orence.htm

In Florence there are numerous museums. Of course you'll want to go to Accademia Galleria for Michelangelo's David. But my favorite was the museum across from the Cathedral, Museo dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore. There is a wonderful late Michelangelo there, and then the simply stunning Mary by Donatello. Do not miss it. Uffizi gallery is the most famous, but frankly it is so huge, and takes so much time to get through, plus it is crowded and a very long line if you don't purchase tickets ahead. I'm glad we did it, but I wouldn't go back. If you have limited time, do the Cathedral museum for sure, then the Accademia.
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#26 Post by Tom G l a s g o w » April 1st, 2014, 4:18 am

Thomas Puricelli wrote:
Mike Cohen wrote:Although I haven't been there in a while, my wife and I absolutely loved the Lungarno. We had a room with a balcony that overlooked the Arno. I took a couple of postcard quality pictures from that balcony.
Likewise.
My wife and i stayed there a few years ago. We had the same Experience as Mike and Tom. It is on the other side of the Arno near ponte vecchio. Pricing was reasonable at the time but we made reservations well in advance.

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#27 Post by Arif F » April 3rd, 2014, 5:03 pm

Thank you all for the wonderful recommendations. Now I have some work to do!
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#28 Post by N. Justl » October 12th, 2016, 7:53 pm

Think we have narrowed our hotel choices down to Continenale or Pallazzo Vecchietti for our trip in March 2017. Any recent input on the choices or similar hotels?
Nick

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#29 Post by Neal.Mollen » October 13th, 2016, 5:33 am

We loved our stay (some years ago, so YMMV) at Hotel Morandi ( http://www.hotelmorandi.it/en-index.php )

Small, tucked off the main streets but super convenient to everything (Florence is a walker's dream), reasonably priced, comfortable, and on a very historic street (have a look at the "Hystoric Notes" page on their site!). It is (was) run by a British expat who has lived in Florence for many decades and knows every stone of the place. Very friendly. I would not hesitate to go back

[Edit: I now see that I posted the same thing 2 years ago in this thread. So, there you go. FWIW]
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#30 Post by Riccardo Campinoti » October 14th, 2016, 3:35 am

If you are thinking 5 stars I highly reccomend Villa Cora.
Right outside the old town , in a very quiet area. Easy walk to the center and the prices are much lower than other 5 stars
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