Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 3070: Palazzo Antellesi, Loft
1bed/1bath apartment in Piazza Santa Croce, Florence
Sept 2007, 3 days
Palazzo Antellesi, with its frescoed facade and jutting upper storey is surely one of the most beautiful palazzi of Florence, located in the Piazza Santa Croce, where the Church of Santa Croce is located, holding many memorials to Italy's greats. It is still lived in by its noble owners, the Piccolomini family who have been renting out some of their elegant apartments for over 25 years. Their apartments are favored by scholars, pensioners and are especially popular with Americans who want to live like the Florentines do.
A short walk brings to the main tourist sites: Palazzo and Piazza della Signoria, Gli Uffizi, Ponte Vecchio, the shopping areas of Tornabuoni and other pedestrian areas. Morning cappuccino and cornetti (excellent) are available at the corner bar, Mario's. Papers, flowers, groceries, rosticcerie are all nearby and one can ignore the souvenir stalls that are set up in the piazza by the time the hordes of tourists arrive about 10am.
One enters through huge wooden doors topped by the family crest, then up a flight of carved stone stairs to the main "piano nobile." The entrance to the Loft apartment is the same as that of the family's private apartments. The Contessa's Jack Russell dogs announce any visitors. Very spacious - about 150 sqm with 16th century frescoes on walls, ceilings, elegantly furnished and complete with all modern conveniences.
You can view the apartment directly: Loft Apartment.
The piazza Santa Croce is just outside, a small private garden and a lovely new gym room are available to guests too.
Magnificent furniture, furnishings , paintings, all from the family's historic collection plus comfy armchairs for watching TV on the modern flat screen TV. CD player and VCR are available too. Loads of coffee table books, art volumes, guides in English to read. The views and people watching from the large windows over the piazza are unbeatable.
Very comfy bed, beautifully painted and furnished bedroom, inside wooden shutters for darkening the room.
Large and fully equipped kitchen, even a washer and DRYER (first I've seen in Italy). Loads of pots, pans, dishes, mean that this apartment could be a first home for several months.
The white marble bathroom has both a modern, powerful shower and a huge bath tub. Fluffy towels and toiletries are provided too.
Problems or Bonuses
This is the way the real Italian nobility live and being a guest at Palazzo Antellesi is entering into their lifestyle.
The Contessa, if she is in residence, usually invites guests to meet with her and have a glass of wine sometime during their stay.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
Treated directly with the owners who speak perfect English. There is one season - high.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
The Palazzo Antellesi for the spaciousness and elegance is the top of the line: I need space and after having tried a few tiny, claustrophobic hotel rooms, I always come back to the Palazzo.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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