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Palazzo La Medicea

Right Next to San Lorenzo Church

Practical in every sense of the word. Not just the amazing position behind the church of San Lorenzo, minutes from the train station and every major monument in Florence but also the organization of the interior space and absolute silence after a busy day exploring.

As I walked up to the front door, it struck me that it was just like walking up to a friend’s home - every apartment has its own doorbell. The entrance is luminous and the elevator is … convenient. Though Giulia and Elena are not the normal welcoming committee it was nice to meet the faces behind the quick emails setting up our appointment this morning. Two active ladies whose university friendship has endured graduating, getting married, having kids and pursuing a career. Drawing on their personal resources and skills they have turned these 11 self catering apartments into an inviting residence for tourists, business travellers and long term vacations.

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The skeleton was already there, and as Elena, an architect, said, “we just gave it a re-dressing, no need to move any walls.” Simple, clean and uncluttered. These three words aptly describe the Villa Medicea presence today. A combination of compact one room studios and larger two & three bedroom apartments literally means that they can accommodate everyone - indifferent to their preferences. Even large groups coming in for a destination wedding in the Florence city hall - can take over the entire structure and will find just the right downtown address.

Why stay here?

We loved: the proximity to everything, museums, restaurants, shopping, and people watching

Ideal for:singles, couples, families and groups...the apartments have the space for everyone

Pick a View

Personally, I am not a city dweller. Yet, I can still appreciate that Villa Medicea has cornered the market on the magical city skyline of Florence. Peering out from the 4th & 3rd floor windows,the visual includes rolling waves of the typical red tile rooftops where every so often a genuine landmark sticks out and has you catch your breath at the timeless beauty. Maybe us ladies are just a bit romantic, but I couldn’t stop admiring the several bathrooms that had you showering with a view of Florence! All the views are awesome, but I have to admit that the views over the Mercato Centrale - a piece of relatively modern architecture (in comparison to the Riccordo Medici Villa on the other side of the residence) - were spectacular. The metal framework and the colored is as beautiful outside as it is inside.

Embrace the City

I could say that I would leave the best for last, but it would be hard to choose. One of the winning points with the guests is none other than the shared scenic terrace. Newly furnished with genuine terracotta tiles and comfortable outdoor seating - this is the place you want to be. Bring your morning coffee, or your afternoon happy hour out to the terrace and contemplate the ...the beauty of Florence. The chapel at the back of the San Lorenzo church appears larger than life - and you could swear if you reached out, that you would be about to caress the tiled roof. My attention was engaged with the beehive of activity that you are privy to watching from above. In the morning, you have the sun as it comes up and warms the day and in the evening you are in the shade, just the place to catch some fresh breezes.

Highlights of my Visit:

Highlight: the terrace as you reaching out to touch the cupola of Medici Chapel...amazing

Surprise: the silence, even in the middle of the city center the noise is cut to a minimum with the special windows

Favorite: the rooms all have large closet spaces to store luggage and extra travel goodies

Both Giulia and Elena let me know that their typical guest ranges from couples to families, they work with each reservation to help them find what they need for their holiday comfort. Privacy and tranquility, as well as lots of extra services like baby furniture, a washer & dryer and an iron board - even a small library of books and guides that are shared among the guests. The prime position means that you are surrounded by lots of opportunities: shopping, dining and sightseeing.

Dining Out Tonight?

One of the first questions that many ask (I know, I would), is where to go to eat. They both agreed one of the most appreciated suggestions is 4 Leoni, authentic and delicious with indoor and outdoor seating. Giulia’s favorite is a little more “ricercato,” perfect for that special moment: Cammilo’s and Elena suggested sticking a little closer to home at ZaZà’s, an icon in Florentine dining including special dishes and wood burning ovens. Both agreed - for lots of variation, activity and good food, nothing beats the Mercato Centrale just down the street.

The studio apartments, perfect for a single or a couple traveling, are compact but efficient with everything you need at your fingertips. The full kitchen includes a refrigerator and a stove. All the apartments have central AC and heating, so they are ideal for all seasons. The floor plans vary, but they all gave views of Florence and they all have access to WiFi and the laundry service. The two bedroom apartments have an eat-in kitchen and two super large bedrooms. Add a cot or baby bed and you still have room to spare. The largest apartment is a three bedroom, three bathroom combination with commanding views of the city. These are just the place you want to be coming home to after a full day on your feet visiting the museums, parks, markets and churches in Florence.

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This is a Sponsored Article but reflects the honest opinion and experience of the author. More details »

Author: Donna Scharnagl

It has been over 24 years since I took my first steps in Italy and I still haven’t found a good reason to leave.  Between the food, the culture, the history, the art, the landscapes … did I mention the food? I have become a lifelong student. And I soon learned that Italians all have stories that long to be told; stories that paint a picture of how hard work produces character, how life is made of ups and downs and how good it feels to laugh.


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