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Where to Stay in Florence
With its rich Renaissance-era history, Florence is a city steeped in artistic and architectural beauty. In addition, it's reputation for fashion and food is known throughout the world. Tourists could spend days exploring the city's historic center near the Piazza del Duomo. Home to some of the city's most notable museums, churches and monuments, this district has a large selection of luxurious boutiques as well as discount hotels. Some of the accommodations in this area are housed in buildings that date back centuries. Those looking to avoid the throngs of tourists that flock to Florence's well-known sites can look for lodgings across the River Arno in Oltrarno. This quaint neighborhood is home to many old-world artisans and is a great locale for traditional Florentine fare. You can also book reservations near the Basilica of San Lorenzo. Not only will you be steps away from one of the largest and most beautiful churches in the city, you will have convenient access to one of Florence's most popular markets, the San Lorenzo market. Fashionistas should search for hotels near the post Santa Trinita square. Considered the hub for high fashion in Florence, this area is home to the city's most upscale fashion boutiques.
Florence Hotel Tips
Summertime is the peak tourist season for Florence. You can expect hotels to fill up fast for the months of July and August. In addition, many Italians vacation this time, so some local restaurants and shops may be closed while locals are out of town. If you do visit during the summer months, search for discount hotel rates far in advance.
Because Italy is a very religious country, Christian holidays can see a massive influx of tourists. Easter and Christmas are especially crowded in Florence as the devout come to take part in large celebrations. If you wish to visit during these occasions, book your reservations many months ahead of time.
If you want to find the best Florence flight deals and hotel rates, consider a trip to Florence in either November or March. The weather during both months is pleasantly comfortable. In addition, tourist traffic is relatively low, so you can be sure to explore all the city's legendary sites without having to compete with throngs of out-of-towners.
Florence Hotel Recommendations
Stay in Florence's historic district at the elegant Palazzo Niccolini Al Duomo. A piece of history itself, this luxury hotel dates back to the 16th century and houses artwork by famous Italian artists. Guests will enjoy easy access to old Florence's most iconic landmarks, including The Duomo cathedral. The hotel's rooms are incredibly spacious and feature high, painted ceilings with frescoed walls and modern decor. Guest bathrooms are outfitted in marble. The entire facility is air conditioned, which can be a blessing during Florence's steamy summer months.
For a more affordable stay, search for vacancies at the Hotel Belletini. This large family-run inn provides comfortable rooms in an amazing location. Guests have easy access to the San Lorenzo market as well as the famous basilica. The Belletini claims a total of 28 guestrooms, two of which have shared baths. A breakfast buffet is included with the price of your room, and a bar is located on site. Rooms are decorated in traditional Tuscan furnishings with modern accents.
If you're looking for a luxury hotel on the other side of the River Arno in Oltrarno, search for vacancies at the Hotel Lungarno. This four-start hotel provides guests with a wide selection of room options. Classic guestrooms are painted in inviting yellow hues and overlook the ancient rooftops of the city. Superior guestrooms overlook the beautiful river, and some have private balconies. The hotel is home to the Borgo San Jacopo restaurant, where guests can dine on traditional Italian food by the side of the river. At night, enjoy a cocktail at the hotel lounge, which features artwork by Picasso, Rosai and Cocteau.
One of the easiest ways to see Florence is one foot. The city's historic center is dense with landmarks and attractions. It's fairly easy for tourists to walk from one cultural gem to the next. Visitors can also rent bicycles, which serve as a faster alternative to walking way around the historic district. The city boasts a public bus network, which carts travelers throughout Florence. There are also buses available to transport tourists to and from the airport, which is three miles away from the city's center. Taxis are available by phone. Renting a car is not recommended for travel within Florence. The city's historic district is closed to traffic, and parking spaces can be a scarce luxury.