Thursday, February 28, 2013

HOTEL CHECK ITALY, Four Seasons Firenze

Yet another of our Select Collection team has visted the amazing Four Seasons Firenze - and been blown over like all the rest of us. Its hard to get closer to perfection suggests Ada, one of the well travelled consultants from our Oslo office. Ada also has some tips on what to see, and where to shop and eat in the "Renaissance city"...

Perfect for a short break, or a celebration. Four Seasons Florence is a beautiful hotel, an oasis within the city with a huge private park. This hotel felt like a palace with a young atmosphere, which you feel at once as you arrive. The perfect combination of classic style, and fresh young atmosphere. It’s hard to get closer to perfection.

A glass roof for a fresh light feel amid Medici treasures
All staff are casual and kind, no arrogance found in anyone, from chef to manager. They have a very good team that really makes you feel welcome. And a very good concierge...
All the rooms are different and they are in two different buildings at each end of the park. The main building Palazzo della Gherardesca  has 79 rooms and The Conventino has 37 rooms. As the name shows the Conventino used to be a small convent. All rooms are beautiful, all have high ceilings, some with Renaissance frescoes from the 15th century when the Medici family ruled.

The smallest room is the Superior Room of 39 sqm and the largest is the Royal Suite of 233 sqm.

Prince and Princess feel - just a corner of their
amazing space

We stayed in a premier room

Many rooms can be connected. The property is full of romantic corners inside and out. Perfect for honeymoon and wedding. See our last blog...
The hotel offers a well equipped gym and attractive spa (though did not get a chance to try it).  There is  one all year restaurant, The Palagio, for fine dining…wonderful cuisine. An Al Fresco poolside restaurant offers more casual dining in summer.  The Winery offers the finest wines of Tuscany.
Four Seasons works closely with

One, two, three, four...five icecreams. At
Carapina they are irrisistible

Local butcher, the famous Dario

We visited all three and we suggest our clients should do the same. Have an icecream (or five) at Carapina after a citytour in Florence, visit the Antinori family’s new winery – like walking into a James Bond movie – and have a lunch at Dario’s hidden restaurant – amazing.

Getting around Florence

Charming small town where the centre is restricted to pedestrians only, so very few cars.
Vespas are everywhere due to this rule, but you can easily cover the centre by foot from the hotel.
Good shopping of leather bags etc at the Santa Croce Leather School
The markets of Florence are charming and why not buy good Parmesan Cheese and hot Salami while there.
Plenty of museums and galleries – we saw the Science Museum, which was really interesting. Another must is to see The David in the Academy Gallery. Bookings are advisable most of the year so do ask our consultants about our Concierge service.

Good restaurants we visited:
For dinner, amazing meat dishes
For lunch with a nice glass of wine.
We made our own Pizza on this restaurant – fun for small groups and families. Need pre-booking. Do make use of our concierge service.

How to get to Four Seasons Florence

20 minutes by car from Florence International Airport or 1 hr from Pisa. Florence is a small and well functioning airport except when there is heavy wind. Since they close the airport fairly often the locals prefer Pisa (60 minute transfer). Our flight was with Swiss Airlines via Zurich, one way economy and one way Business. The main difference is the food. On these short flights the seats are the same in Business, but there is more sense of space as the central seat has been removed.
Images in blog style snapped by our Select Team apart from image of Royal Suite by Aleah L Stanbridge Photography. For further images see our last blog

Inevitably marble and huge

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