Forza Firenze: Where To Say And What To Do In Tuscany

Rome Italy, The Escape, Milli Midwood, Holiday Destination
Four Seasons
Bazaar beats the summer crowds and journeys under the Tuscan sun to enjoy Florence’s renaissance riches, glorious galleries and flair for fashion

Few cities on earth are as romantic or ethereal as Florence: its meandering Arno river, the twinkling lights of Pont de Vecchio, a wealth of art on tap, soulful Tuscan cuisine (gelato is essential), centuries-old architecture, and the rolling bucolic countryside. Throw in the history of fashion – Guccio Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo opened boutiques in Florence in the 1920s – and this city has la dolce vita written all over it. But how to make the most of your holiday? Follow our lead...

Where to stay...

The St. Regis Florence
The magnificent St. Regis hotel, occupying a 15th-century former palace on the Piazza Ognissanti and overlooking the Arno River, is the perfect escape for staying centrally without getting caught up in the crowds. The interiors are imbued with custom frescoes, antiques, crystal chandeliers, vast gilt mirrors and the St Regis’ signature marble hallways. Each of the 99 rooms has been adorned with rich velvets and brocades, as has the atmospheric Winter Garden, the heart of the hotel where you’ll find yourself  breakfasting in the morning and aperitivo-ing in the afternoon. For pure unabashed luxury, check yourself into one of the suites, which comes complete with your own 24/7 personal butler service.
From Dhs3,800; Marriott.com

St Regis Firenze
The St. Regis Florence


JK Place
If boutique hotels are more your thing then Florence’s only townhouse hotel, the charming JK Place, is for you. With holidaymakers including Christian Louboutin, sofas that boast custom Hermès fabrics and signed Helmut Newton books residing in the library, you’re as likely to find fashion designers launching capsule collections as you are couples in town for a long weekend retreat. Book the penthouse suite and you’ll open your curtains to an unspoilt view of the Duomo every morning. From Dhs2,500 a night; Jkplaces.com

JK Place

JK Place

Hotel Four Seasons Firenze
Set across two buildings – a 14th-century palazzo and a 16th century conventino – and connected by one of Florence’s largest and most beautiful private gardens, this hotel is a stunning escape just minutes from the city’s main attractions. Take a stroll down the tree-lined path of the impeccably maintained 11-acre botanical garden that’s fringed by verdant flowers, towering woods and a vast array of ever changing sculptures and artworks. From Dhs4,220 a night; Fourseasons.com 

Four Seasons Firenze

Hotel Four Seasons Firenze

What to do 

Palazzo Corsini
For a perfect blend of art, culture and Instagrammable corners, take a stroll around Palazzo Corsini and immerse yourself in the history of Baroque and Renaissance art. You might even be treated to a cameo from Edgardo Osorio, as  Aquazzura’s head office is on the top floor of the palace.

Palazzo Corsini
Palazzo Corsini

The Mall Firenze
Just a 30-minute drive from the centre of Florence - and if you don't drive then don't fear, The Mall offers daily shuttle buses to the retail space -, a fashion lover’s haven awaits you here, a luxury shopping outlet complex that boasts all your favourite designer labels, including Chloé, Fendi, Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, Saint Laurent and more, all at heavily discounted prices - Bazaar walked away with the most gorgeous Burberry dress at a steal of 80-percent off. And when a day of retail therapy has tired the sartorial life out of you, pop into the Gucci café for a cappuccino and pastry or take a stroll through the magnificent architecture and soak up the Tuscan sun. Open Sunday to Monday, 10am to 7pm. www.themall.it

The Mall Firenze
The Mall Firenze

Fattoria di Maiano
It wouldn’t be a trip to Italy without sampling some of the finest olive oil the country has to offer. Plan a day trip to Fattoria di Maiano and embark on a safari  across the 300-hectare farm, where you’ll visit the botanical gardens, bike ride over the Tuscan hills and learn how to make olive oil in the mill.

Tuscany
Fattoria di Maiano


From the September 2018 issue of Harper's Bazaar Arabia

With thanks to The Mall Firenze

BY

Rome Italy, The Escape, Milli Midwood, Holiday Destination
Four Seasons