Friday, November 18, 2016

Wrap up of One Glorious Week in Florence, Italy, Part - 3

Watercolor of me with the Ponte Vecchio in the background

Back in the States, I just watched the film A Room With A View, Again. And what is amazing is that they could get as much of the master shots in as possible. For example: like the Piazza Della Signoria. Somehow they were able to keep at bay the tourists and maintain the period look of the film. And they kept their wide shots tight enough not to show any of the restaurants or caffes that surround the square.

(NOTE: We totally loved our Airbnb but if hotels are more your style, check out the #1 rated hotel in Florence on Tripadvisor, the Hotel David.)

 Yours truly in front of the Palazza Vecchio, the Fountain of Neptune and the Loggia dei Lanzi


That being said, the movie transported me right back to Florence. Butterflies in my stomach (in a good way.) But stepping beyond the usual points of attraction and exploring the city with our firenzecard (entrance to 72 museums for 72 Euros within 72 hours) we literally bumped into museum showings and cultural events that we didn't even know about. Palazzo Strozzi clebrating the controversial Chinese artist Ai WeiWei we chanced upon the beautiful Museo Novecento - very modern!

Ai Weiwei

The very modern Nove Cento Museum was extremely eclectic . . .


 

. . . but outside of  the Palazzo Stozzi was the Piazza Santa Maria Novella. So peaceful, so open and at the far end is the Santa Maria Novella Church.

Piazza Santa Maria Novella
Santa Maria Novella in the background
It was such a calming escape from the touristy chaos of Florence's historic center. But inside this gorgeous church hangs probably one of the most priceless art treasures - Giotto's Crucifix done in the 1320s.


It's just hanging there for you to admire. It's truly remarkable!

Later in the day, my travel partner Bud and I met up with our Venetian friend, Francesca Marucci.



She was so generous to spend time with us. Francesca walked us over to the Il Mercato Centrale, a very classy but casual giant food court with all types of food and wine bars. They even have cooking classes. There's live music and artisan shops...kind of a cross betgween NYC's Chelsea Market combined with Barcelona's La BoquerĂ­a.

No matter what city you visit, if you can connect with a local, you will discover an entirely new perspective to where ever you are visiting.

Thank you Francesca . . .



. . . and thank you Florence!

Love this "twig" giraffe sitting on the banks of the Arno.
Bud and I had discussed how low the level of the Arno was and then less than a week after we left, the river flooded.

Be safe Florence - hope to see you again, soon!

Ciao!





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