PLEASE NOTE: TWO WEEK MINIMUM STAY.
This house is for those who want to experience the authentic Florence and do something interesting and adventuresome – from their own comfortable and well furnished home. The house is in the Oltrarno (south side of the Arno River, the same side as the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens), about half way between the river and Porta Romana; near Piazza Tasso. The area is known as San Frediano, originally the crafts and working class neighborhood – today more upscale, but still very genuine and with plenty of character.
If you want to sip coffee in the morning while you watch the neighborhood wake up and come to life; if you want to shop locally for the best quality groceries, produce, and meats to make a spectacular lunch or dinner (to be enjoyed on the spacious terrace or in the dining room with candlelight); if you want to come home and unwind away from the crowds after a day of museums; if you want to explore arts, crafts, shops and workshops both traditional and contemporary; if you want to relax like a local over lunch or dinner in some of Florence’s best regarded and liveliest restaurants – then this is the house for you.
The house is on a small one-way street, at the juncture of two other small one-way streets, so there is little traffic, and it is quiet, especially at night and on weekends. It is in a real Florentine neighborhood, just outside the tourist center so it is away from the noise, crowds, and craziness, but only a 15-20 minute walk to Piazza Repubblica (the center).
The house is perfect for two to four people (or six for a shorter stay). It is approximately 110 square meters (or 1100 square feet), not counting the rooftop terrace. The house is one story at street level, no one above or below. It gets lots of light, and all windows and doors are double-paned. The house has two “regular” bedrooms with doors that close: one with an Italian matrimoniale-size bed (US king bed equivalent), a frescoed ceiling, and French doors; the other has extra-long twin beds. The third bedroom is a small, open, loft bedroom (up ten steps) with a US-queen-size bed. The house has two bathrooms, both with modern fixtures and showers; the larger one also has a jacuzzi tub.
The living room has a large sectional sofa; the dining room has French doors and one wall of rustic stone; the small, but fully furnished kitchen has a dishwasher, four-burner gas stove, oven, full-size refrigerator, microwave, breakfast table and three stools. Walk up ten steps to the office, which has a large desk workspace and lots of bookshelves (with plenty of guidebooks). Up ten more steps from the office, the large rooftop terrace (another 65 square meters – or, more than 650 square feet) is one of the house’s great features: it is partially covered, part full sun, with dining table and chairs for eight, two lounge chairs, and lots of plants (jasmine, two olive trees, a lemon tree, laurel shrubs, box hedges, herbs) – the perfect place for a book and glass of wine, dinner in the evening, coffee in the morning, a late lunch on weekends, or for soaking up some sun after a long morning of museums and sightseeing.
The house is clean and bright. All the furniture and furnishings are in excellent condition. The house has a washing machine; wireless internet access; TV with satellite and universal DVD player, and CD player, in the living room; TV with universal DVD player in the office; both a land telephone and use of an Italian cell phone. All three bedrooms and the living room have air-conditioning, which can be turned on or off or adjusted independently. The house has marble floors; traditional Tuscan brick and beamed ceilings in the office, the loft bedroom, and the dining room; and many hand-painted touches. The armadios (wardrobes) and some other pieces are attractive old/antiques. The house comes well furnished, with high quality sheets, towels, dishes, pots, pans, and so on. The French doors in the master bedroom and in the dining room have full mosquito screens.
Now, for the location: We are around the corner from a spotlessly clean gastronomia: a small family-owned shop for vegetables, cheeses, milk, juice, delicious homemade breads and pastries, pasta, salumi (that is, sliced meats like prosciutto and salamis), and many other necessities. Next door to the gastronomia is a newsstand where you can buy bus tickets, magazines, or the International Herald Tribune. We are a few minutes walk to some of Florence’s best local trattorias and wine bars, like La Vecchia Bettola, which is a two minute walk (and great fun to eat outside on a summer night or indoors by the stove on a winter night); Trattoria del Carmine (also a favorite); the very cozy and inexpensive Sabatino; Antico Ristoro di Cambi (famous for steaks – la bistecca Fiorentina), the popular Quattro (4) Leoni, and the charming Tranvai, all for traditional and delicious Florentine food. Romantic Le Barrique, the trendy Il Santo Bevitore, and Olio and Convivium offer something a bit more modern. Great pizza is just off Porta Romana, and a bit farther up Via Senese is Da Ruggero – the epitome of a Florentine trattoria (and perfect for Sunday lunch).
The house is convenient to several bus lines, including the bus to Siena, the buses that pass along Viale Michelangelo (for great views!), and buses that go directly to the city center, to the National Library, or to the state archives. We are very close (a 5 minute walk) to Piazza del Carmine and the Brancacci Chapel, another 5 minutes to Piazza Santo Spirito with its beautiful church and morning market. Great local shopping, food shops, wine shops, etc. are on nearby Via dei Serragli and Via Romana; Via Santo Spirito for an interesting mix of traditional craft rooms and elegant, modern shops; and Via Maggio for antiques window shopping.
Also see our lovely and spacious country house, with gorgeous private pool and grounds, in the best part of the Tuscan countryside: vrbo 120701
This is our home - not just a rental property. We are here every year, even if only for a few weeks, and we care about its condition, furnishings, and upkeep. Florence is our children's second home, and the city is a part of our lives. Until now, we have been renting it out by the academic year, but now that we can be visiting more often, we have decided to rent it short term - by two weeks or more.
We have been coming to Italy for nearly 30 years - both for pleasure and for historical research. Having our own place in Florence was something we imagined for a long time before finding our ideal home: an independent house (neither apartment nor condominium); a big terrace; lots of light; a quiet street; and a real Florentine neighborhood.
Walking distance to almost everything, including lots of great restaurants. The terrace! Being just outside the tourist center, and in the real Florence. Buying the newspaper at the corner newsstand in the morning, then to the gastronomia next door for fresh brioche, and then home to read the paper over breakfast and watch the neighborhood from the kitchen window. Having a glass of wine on the terrace while watching the sunset. We provide an informative House Book that tells not only how to work the appliances, but also offers lots of suggestions on museums, attractions, shopping, and dining, both in the neighborhood and throughout Florence. Our friendly, bilingual (English/American and Italian) property manager in Florence will meet you, orient you to the house, and be available for any problems.
Walk to great restaurants, shopping, museums, language schools, art classes, and more.