Saturday, January 28, 2006

Not to be Missed: Amalfi Coast

A new useful resource for hotels and bed and breakfast in Italy: Italia Lodging Amalfi Coast

Easy to use website with rich photo galleries for each accommodation, interactive maps and booking request forms.

If you think about spending a few days in the Amalfi Coast Area, this website is a useful and informative tool.

The Italia Lodging Staff

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

A dreamlike stay in Sorrento

Besides Florence, we have some really nice suggestions.

A stay in Sorrento with a view overlooking the Naples Gulf, staying in Rooms with three windows over the sea. This is what everybody would dream thinking about spending a few days in this wonderful town.

The Maison La Minervetta is something more than an Hotel, and it is something more than a bed and breakfast: it is just a magnificent accommodation in a dreamlike setting.

If you are thinking about spending part of your Italian journey in Sorrento read this description. If you are concerned about the rates…. It is not cheap but not even as expensive as you could imagine:

The 4 star Maison La Minervetta is in a very unique position sits on the seacliff overlooking the antique fisherman village Marina Grande, the entire Gulf of Naples and just in front the Volcano Vesuvius. It is few minutes away from the centre of Sorrento. With a large lounge area, dining room and kitchen accessible to the guests, opening onto an exclusive terrace with spectacular views, La Minervetta offers all the comforts of being in a private home.Maison “La Minervetta” has 12 breathtaking rooms all overlooking the antique fisherman’s wharf Marina Grande and the Gulf of Naples. All of the rooms have large windows, many from the floor to the ceiling, providing unbelievable views of the volcano Vesuvius.Each room is unique, in its size, furnishings and colours. The average size of the rooms is 30 sq. metres. The colours of the rooms are inspired by those of the local fisherman boats, with vibrant turquoises, blues, oranges, and yellows; each room is special in its own way. The furniture, lamps, and various objects in each room have all been collected by the owners throughout their years of travel around the world.All rooms offer the following services: air conditioning/heating, hair dryer, sound-proofing, spacious safe, mini-fridge, laundry service, TV with satellite reception, and direct access phone.The Maison’s style is modern, with warm touches of ethnic objects, libraries filled with picture books, architectural and design journals, and many vintage pieces. The hotel offers a comfortable, yet luxurious, special setting for its guests.


Have a nice stay in Sorrento,

A Florence View Staff

Friday, January 13, 2006

Florence: independent apartments

Our bed and breakfast succesfully cooperates with two independent apartments in Florence.

They are both perfectly located and perfect for people searching for accommodations with a full use of the kitchen. These vacation rentals can be booked for short periods as weel: the minimum stay required is 2 nights. Being located in the old part of the city be aware abaut the lack of elevators. Here you have a short description and the web links to see them on the net:

IL LOGGIATO (Via dei Neri, Signoria Sqaure)
Delighfully situated in the very heart of Florence, just fifty meters from Piazza della Signoria and few minutes walk from Ponte Vecchio and Duomo, "Il Loggiato" is a small, charming and quiet independent apartment, recently renewed, on the second floor of a 17th century building (without elevator), with all comforts and facilities to ensure the guests a relaxing and pleasant stay. A perfet solution to be completely independent, feeling like at home, in the real heart of Florence.

LA VISTA (Via Costa dei Magnoli, Old Bridge)
Located in the historical center of Florence five minutes walk from Pontevecchio, this charming apartment (on the fourth and last floor of an ancient XVII century building, no elevator) has all facilities and comforts to ensure our guests a pleasant and relaxing stay. But what makes "La Vista" unique is the marvellous panorama you have from its terrace: the nearby Palazzo della Signoria, with its high bell-tower, the Duomo, Santa Croce church and in fact the whole of the historical center of Florence.

A Florence View Staff

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Italia Lodging Venice

A new website is ready for those looking for a charming bed and breakfast or Hotel in Venice.

Enjoy surfing

The Italia Lodging Staff

Monday, January 09, 2006

Some Guests’ comments and reviews

We are now beginning the second year of activity at A Florence View bed and breakfast.
After the first year we were quite curious to know if we are doing a good job and how satisfied our customers have been. That’s why we have asked to some of them to write us a feedback to know what is good and what has to be improved.

We are extremely happy to know that we have been working well, and beyond the good location of our B&B we have offered a good service. Anyway we have read all the messages carefully and we are working on a few things that as they said “will do…”

Here you have a few messages we were authorised to publish:

Marlene and Bernard Kaye - UK - December 2005
View spectacular.Rooms comfortable ( but tea and coffeee making facilities would have been nice)Breakfast arrangements superb( If you plan to serve breakfast in the room, would only do this ,if it were of commensuarate quality).Would recommend you to anyone
Marlene and Bernard Kaye
Fiona Inglis - UK - October 2005
Dear Gianluca,
Of course I am happy to give you feedback. We had a great stay in Florence. The location was superb, the room had great character and was very comfortable. The bathroom though compact was clean and modern. We really enjoyed having breakfast in the cafe bar next door. We are hoping to go back to Florence next year and would have no hesitation using you again. We have already recommended you to our family and friends. Please keep in touch if you have any special offers!
Susan and Vince Paterino - Canada - July 2005
Dear Gianluca,
We would love to give you our feedback for "A Florence View bed andbreakfast"
We tell everyone about your accommodations and show the pictures. Theyare in awe on how we lucked out in finding such a place.
We loved the accommodations. We were 6 people traveling together andour rooms were very comfortable. We especially loved the area.Traveling with our 16 year son, he loved the atmosphere during the dayand evening just outside our door. For us we loved the unlimited amountof shops and restaurants to choose from.
We really did not have any complaints for the breakfast. We were finewith the coffee and croissant.
The only thing that I would suggest that maybe you indicate on thedescription some how, that there is no parking. And if you aretraveling with a rented vehicle that parking will be provided for a fee.(Like we did, remember we had a nice gentleman take our Van and park itin a garage for a fee each day?).
That's about it really. Except that it was a memorable time for us andfor our kids. My son recently came back from Italy. He spent 4 monthsin school there and visited Florence. He returned to the exact spotwhere we stayed and showed his friends. He loved it.
Best Wishes for a New Year,
Susan and Vince Paterino
Terry and Brian Norman - Australia - June 2005
Happy New Year,
We enjoyed staying at a Florence View B & B, who wouldn't at such a perfectlocation,
Breakfast was fine, We liked going downstairs, maybe just a broader choicewould be good,
A littler refrigerator in the room would be the only extra I can think off.
Terry and Brian Norman (Mr & Mrs)
Kristie Robinson - Australia - May 2005
'A Florence View' was our best choice of accommmodation overour entire 6 week trip through Europe. You could not hopefor a better location. We looked out our window to themagnificient Duomo - the view was amazing, plus we wereright in the centre of all the action, but it wasn't at allnoisy.The room was spacious and very clean and I have recommendedto all my friends that they visit 'A Florence View' nexttime they are in beutiful Florence. I hope I'll be backsoon.
Kristie (June 2005)
Lisa Ganzer - USA - April 2005
Our stay at "A Florence View Bed and Breakfast" was wonderful. The roomsare lovely, the bathroom is spacious, and the Piazza San Giovanni is theperfect location to stay while exploring Florence. I will definitelyrecommend this B&B to my friends.
Thank you for a wonderful stay!!
Sincerely,Lisa Ganzer

Thank you very much to all of our guests!

A Florence View Bed and Breakfast Staff

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Florence: Oltrarno or Santo Spirito

Here you have a few information about what to see in Florence “Oltarno”, literally meaning “on the other side of the Arno River”. If in the old times this was considered an outskirt of the city, now it is a neighbourhood maintaining the charm and the spirit of the true Florence. Nowadays it is a picturesque neighbourhood populated by craftsmen, restorers and antique dealers. The district of Santo Spirito in Oltrarno, gets its name from the Church of Santo Spirito.

Here a list of the must to be seen in the district

Designed by Brunelleschi and begun in 1444, it is one of the most beautiful examples of Renaissance architecture. The interior, in the shape of a Latin cross with three naves, is pure Brunelleschian style. The sacristy was built to plans by Giuliano da Sangallo. Next to the church is the Cenacle of Santo Spirito, where there is still a fragment of the "Last Supper" by Andrea Orcagna.

This chapel is famous throughout the world for its frescoes by Masaccio, a masterpiece of Renaissance painting; it is located in the 13th century church of Santa Maria del Carmine. Masolino was commissioned to do the frescoes and he began work in 1424 with the help of Masaccio. When Masaccio left Florence, the frescoes were completed after 1480 by Filippino Lippi.

This museum contains a rich zoological collection of both existing and extinct animals, but above all it is famous for its collection of 18th century anatomical wax figures by Gaetano Zumbo: it is considered the finest in the world for beauty and quality.

Inside this church, in the Capponi chapel is Pontormo's painting of the "Deposition" (1525-28) which is considered one of the masterpieces of Florentine Mannerism.

This palace was commissioned by Luca Pitti in 1448. The original plans, attributed to Brunelleschi, called for a much smaller building than the one we see now: it was enlarged in 1549 when ownership passed to the Medici family. The beautiful courtyard by Ammannati dates from that period. The Pitti Palace was enlarged and modified many times over the centuries: it was the seat of the Lorraine dynasty and, when Florence was capital of Italy, of the Court of Savoia. Today it houses several museums and galleries the most important of which is the Palatine Gallery, containing the private collections of the Grand Dukes, with masterpieces dating from the 15th to 17th centuries, including paintings by Titian, Giorgione, Raphael, and Rubens. The other museums are the Gallery of Modern Art, the Silver Museum, the Costume Gallery, the Carriage Museum, the Porcelain Museum, the Contini Bonacossi Collection, the Royal Apartments and the Apartment of the Duchess of Aosta.
One of the most beautiful Italian gardens extends on the Boboli hill between the Pitti Palace and Forte Belvedere. It was designed by Tribolo in 1549 and then enhanced by Ammanati and Buontalenti. The 16th century fortress, Forte Belvedere, dominates the gardens and the entire city; it was designed by Buontalenti for the Grand Duke Ferdinando I.

Piazzale Michelangelo was built in 1869 to plans by Giuseppe Poggi; it offers a splendid panorama of the city. In the middle of this plaza stand bronze copies of Michelangelo's "David" and the four statues on the tombs in the Medici Chapels.
Just above Piazzale Michelangelo is the basilica of San Miniato al Monte. Its green and white marble façade is considered one of the finest examples of the Florentine Romanesque style. Built between the 11th and 13th centuries, it contains fine artworks such as the chapel of the "Crucifixion" by Michelozzo and the chapel of the Cardinal of Portugal both decorated by Luca della Robbia and the splendid frescoes by Spinello Aretino, depicting "Scenes from the Life of St. Benedict".

This museum contains the fine collection of art objects bequeathed to the city by the antique dealer Stefano Bardini. The many masterpieces of painting and sculpture include works by Nicola Pisano, Tino da Camaino, Pollaiolo and Donatello.

If you like antiques don’t forget your wallet full of credit cards: you’ll find a paradise to empty it!

Enjoy Santo Spirito,

A Florence View Staff