The Hedonist: Going wild in Florence

What to see and where to be seen

I wake up with a jump to a knock at the door. The Boyfriend doesn't stir and since I'm somewhat disoriented, due to waking up face down in a ridiculously fluffy pillow, it takes the sight of terracotta rooftops and sunshine streaming through the windows to remind me that we are in Florence. Firenze: city of fashion, art, food and, as my pounding head is reminding me, rather potent cocktails.

Another knock and I stumble from the bed, wrapping myself in one of the hotel's delicious bathrobes on the way. I open the door to a cheery "Buongiorno" and our breakfast on a silver tray. Back in the cloud-like bed, I nudge The Boyfriend. With cappuccino and eggs Benedict, we recover from our mad night dancing at Doris (00 39 055 233 7783; dorisfirenze.com).

There's nothing like a morning of decadence after a night of hedonism. JK Place (00 39 055 264 5181; jkplace.com) is serene and stylish, the kind of hotel you never want to leave. Yesterday our bags had been spirited up to our room the minute we arrived while we sipped espresso by the Louis XV fireplace and then enjoyed pre-dinner cocktails on the rooftop terrace.

JK Place is also only a short walk from our lunchtime venue. Our table at Cantina Barbagianni (00 39 055 248 0508; cantinabarbagianni.it) is a charmingly intimate affair, and before we know it, hours have passed in delicious mouthfuls and a steady stream of wine.

Back at the hotel, we find a bottle of spumante chilling in our room. The sound of the cork popping is followed by the sound of my clothes hitting the floor and I slip into the gigantic bathtub to soak away the remnants of my hangover and steel myself for another night out.

Dinner is booked at Ora d'Aria (00 39 055 200 1699; www.oradariaristorante.com). The food is incredible and every course is matched with a glass of wine. The suckling piglet with lavender and garlic is so good it makes my toes curl; I sigh with contentment.

We stumble along the Arno to the Ponte alle Grazie where we meet some friends and make our way to X Bacco Caffe, a bar that's reputed to make the best caipirinha in the city. It is perched on the corner of Piazza Santa Croce, with tables spilling out on to the square. Luckily, it's not too busy when we arrive, so we monopolise the bar. However, after a couple of cocktails the place is heaving with locals, expatriates and fellow travellers, all beautiful and bronzed. It's not long before everyone's dancing, cocktails in hand, out under the stars.

Light starts to filter through the sky, creeping over the rooftops with the promise of dawn. The dancing starts to wind down, so we wend our way back to our heavenly bed. After all, we need at least a few hours' beauty sleep before our train to Milan later this morning.

A Hedonist's Guide to... (Hg2) is a luxury city guide series for the more decadent traveller. For more information, see hg2.com

News
Sir David Attenborough
people
Life and Style
Young girl and bowl of cereal
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Henry VIII played by Damien Lewis
tvReview: Scheming queens-in-waiting, tangled lines of succession and men of lowly birth rising to power – sound familiar?
Sport
football
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Ready to open the Baftas, rockers Kasabian are also ‘great film fans’
musicExclusive: Rockers promise an explosive opening to the evening
Life and Style
David Bowie by Duffy
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
Hell, yeah: members of the 369th Infantry arrive back in New York
booksWorld War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel
News
advertisingVideo: The company that brought you the 'Bud' 'Weis' 'Er' frogs and 'Wasssssup' ads, has something up its sleeve for Sunday's big match
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Group Sales Manager - Field Based

    £21000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Located on the stunning Sandban...

    Guru Careers: Email Marketing Specialist

    £26 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Email Marketing Specialist is needed to join...

    Recruitment Genius: Tour Drivers - UK & European

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity to join a is a...

    Old Royal Naval College: ORNC Visitor Experience Volunteer

    Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
    World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

    Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

    The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
    Why the league system no longer measures up

    League system no longer measures up

    Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
    Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

    Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

    Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
    Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

    Greece elections

    In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
    Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

    Holocaust Memorial Day

    Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
    Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

    Magnetic north

    The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
    Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

    Front National family feud?

    Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
    Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

    Pot of gold

    Tasting the world’s most expensive tea