From £206.50
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OVERVIEW

In a lively central piazza, opposite the basilica of Santa Maria Novella, this 18th-century palazzo has had a makeover that marries its historic features with a modern and whimsical style. Full-size cartoon figures dot the pillared atrium, while sleek bedrooms mix frescoes with vintage furnishings. It's breakfast-only, but there's also a cocktail bar and courtyard.


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Rooms available from £206.50 per night

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OUR REVIEW

THE NEIGHBOURHOOD

In the big and lively Piazza di Santa Maria Novella, across from the graceful church of the same name, the hotel is a couple of minutes from the train station (with its direct line to Pisa airport). The city's other central sights, shopping streets and river are all within a twenty-minute walk. The striking pink, white and green marble façade of Santa Maria Novella is across the piazza, while the city's showpiece, the Duomo, is less than a ten-minute walk. Bars a-plenty line the piazza.

By plane: there are direct flights to Florence Airport from London (2 hours 5 minutes), Manchester (4 hours 25 minutes), Edinburgh (4 hours 55 minutes). The hotel is a 25-minute drive from the airport. Book flights to Florence.

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THE LOOK AND FEEL

The 18th-century palazzo has been stripped back to its impressive original features of flagstone floors, Corinthian pillars, vaulted ceilings and plaster walls, and furnished in a minimalist style: velvet and leather sofas, designer lights, muted colours and witty cartoon figures. The playful style and lack of fussy formality create a relaxed atmosphere.

THE FACILITIES

The vast atrium means plenty of space for guests to relax, plus there's a small courtyard and cocktail-style bar, the latter with a delightful frescoed ceiling. The 24-hour reception offers a slick service with staff who have a good knowledge of the city.

  • Breakfast
  • Snack bar
  • Bar
  • Airport shuttle
  • Pet-friendly
  • Free Wi-Fi

BED AND BATH

Rooms have a cool, pared-back, masculine style with parquet floors, retro-style furnishings, sober-coloured walls and modern art. Some have original frescoes or timbered ceilings, others are lofty with shuttered windows. Bathrooms are bright with marble-walled showers; larger rooms have bathtubs. Front rooms overlook the bustling piazza; inner-courtyard rooms are the quietest.

Room types: Classic, Deluxe, Deluxe with View, Junior Suite

Key amenities: ensuite bathroom, tea and coffee-making facilities, free Wi-Fi

FOOD AND DRINK

Breakfast is a bustling affair (it's shared with next-door sister hotel, Rossi 23) with a reasonable buffet offering fruit, cheeses, meats, pastries and cooked eggs. Il Garabaldino bar is open from mid-afternoon for drinks, coffee and nibbles. For supper, L'Orologio, another sister hotel also in the piazza, is a good choice for simple, good-value dishes such as pasta, salads and charcuterie.

Breakfast: continental and American buffet. Open 7-10.30am.

Il Garibaldino Bar: extensive menu, cocktails. Open from 3pm.

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