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Hotel Brunelleschi, Florence

Hotel Brunelleschi

Built around a 7th-century tower with foundations that include a Roman spa, the buildings that comprise the Brunelleschi are steeped in history. Entering the main reception, you pass under what was once the archway of the parish church of St Michael and into a hotel that seamlessly blends the historic with the modern. The various communal spaces offer glimpses of the original brickwork of the tower, beamed wooden ceilings and ancient stonework. Despite this, the hotel manages to achieve a chic and contemporary feel with arty black and white photographic prints decorating the walls and a dramatic transparent staircase linking the different floors.

Our rating: First Class

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Rooms

The rooms at the Brunelleschi are elegantly furnished and boast a good range of high quality modern amenities. Black and white photographic prints draw on elements of Florentine architecture, as does the etched glass design on the sliding bathroom doors. Due to the historic nature of the property, the rooms vary somewhat in size, but most categories feature either a combined bath and shower or separate shower depending on your preference (a number of the larger rooms and suites offer both). All the rooms have a flat screen TV, free Wi-Fi and air-conditioning; higher room categories also offer espresso machines.

Location

The Brunelleschi is tucked into a quiet little square just steps from the Duomo and Piazza della Signoria, and just two streets away from the Piazza della Repubblica. The hotel is accessed by a narrow alley that opens out into the charming, shady square, which also hosts the hotel’s small outdoor terrace bar.

Food and drink

Breakfast is buffet-style with fresh fruit, bread, pastries, cold meats and cheeses, cereals and a small selection of hot options. The light and airy breakfast room looks out onto the historic tower. For dining during the day, there’s a small, informal restaurant that leads out into the terrace bar, where you can enjoy Tuscan-style dishes. The Santa Elizabetta restaurant in the tower offers a gourmet à la carte menu and an intimate dining experience.

Facilities and activities

The Brunelleschi provides a full concierge service as well as a good-sized fitness and exercise room for guests to enjoy during their stay. Maps showing good jogging routes around historic central Florence are available from reception. In the small museum underneath the property, you can explore the foundations of the tower, the remains of the Roman spa and other relics uncovered during the hotel’s renovation.

Our opinion

The Hotel Brunelleschi is a little gem, tucked away in a quiet square close to the highlights of Florence. The dedication of the staff means that service levels are high and we wholeheartedly recommend it.

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    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.

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      A wonderful opportunity to visit a family truffle business, learn about the production process, go on a truffle hunt and enjoy a tasting lunch.