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Last updated: 31 October, 2022
Expert travel writer: Nicky Swallow

This conveniently located 4-star hotel offers smart, comfortable modern rooms (many of which have views over historic piazza Santa Maria Novella and its eponymous church), good service and – the USP – a rooftop pool and bar which is an unbeatable spot for sunset cocktails.

Once a pilgrims’ hospice, it was overhauled in the 1950s by famous Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa, and the interiors are inspired by that era.

The hotel is a good all-rounder, popular with tourists and business folk and welcomes families.

The hotel is located a few minutes’ walk from Santa Maria Novella train station and the tram stop for the airport; the mian sights are all within a 10-15 minute walk.

Surrounding area

The hotels stands on wide, open, pedestrianized Piazza Santa Maria Novella which throngs with tourists in high season.

It is lined with tall, handsome town houses; at the northern end stands the church of Santa Maria Novella with its magnificent swirling marble façade.

Piazza Santa Maria Novella is a lively square lined with pavement cafés and restaurants, but good double glazing keeps any street noise at bay.

The famous Santa Maria Novella pharmacy is a short walk away, housed in a 13th-century frescoed chapel and founded by Dominican monks.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers: Not available
Beach: None
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
: Nearby *
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Baptistery of St. John

Baptistery of St. John

Florence, Tuscany, Italy[0.5 miles]

The octagonal, Romanesque Baptistery, thought to originate in the Dark Ages, is one of Florence’s oldest buildings. It is famous for its three sets of ornate bronze doors although the ones you see today are copies (the originals are in the Cathedral Works Museum).

Best for ages: 18+ | £4

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Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

HZERO Model Railway Collection

HZERO Model Railway Collection

Florence, Tuscany, Italy[0.1 miles]

An ex-cinema houses the fabulous private model railway collection belonging to the late Marchese di San Giuliano. The centrepiece is a 280-square metre model, one of the largest in Europe; the landscaping (from mountains to seascapes) is exquisite.

Best for ages: 4+ | £12

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Internal dispensing room in the Santa Naria Novella Pharmacy in Florence

Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy

Florence, Tuscany, Italy[0.1 miles]

This famous pharmacy, established by Dominican friars in Florence in 1221 and housed in a 13th-century frescoed chapel, has served up herbal remedies and therapeutic treatments to Florentines for centuries. The signature soaps, potpourri, lotions, potions and herbal remedies make brilliant gifts to take home.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

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Palazzo Strozzi

Palazzo Strozzi

Florence, Tuscany, Italy[0.4 miles]

This 16th-century palazzo is home to one of Italy’s most innovative public art galleries. Rotating exhibitions showcase artists as diverse as Jeff Koons, Ai Wei-Wei and Bill Viola and Bronzino, Donatello and Pontormo. The ‘Strozzino’ gallery in the basement focuses on contemporary art and peripheral cultural events.

Best for ages: 18+ | £13

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Florence’s Central Market

Florence’s Central Market

Florence, Tuscany, Italy[0.4 miles]

The first floor of Florence’s traditional produce market, Centrale Mercato, was transformed in 2014 into a dazzling food hall where producers offer everything from freshly-made mozzarella, truffle pasta, barbequed ribs, artisan bread and cheeses to hand-made chocolates. Pair a guided tour (to find ingredients) with a Tuscan cooking class after.

Best for ages: 13+ | Free

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Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay


Tuscany, Italy

The astonishingly beautiful region of Tuscany has it all: art cities and ancient hill towns, high mountains and long sandy beaches, alongside luxurious hotels and some of Italy’s best food and wine.

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