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A lovely palazzo on the right bank of the River Arno, Hotel Balestri was established in 1888.  Its old-world charm, modern amenities and welcoming atmosphere make it a great temporary home while visiting the treasures of Florence.  Indeed, the hotel itself is a treasure, and not just for its position in the historic center of Dante’s city. The reception rooms are most inviting, furnished in rich fabrics in shades of gold, coral and chocolate brown, enticing us to linger and enjoy the relaxed comfort.  Our room on the fourth floor overlooks the river and the magnificent buildings that line the left bank, each with its patina of grace and golden warmth.  From our balcony overlooking the Arno, Ponte Vecchio is to our right and San Miniato crowns the view in the distance. From the fifth floor terrace, added within the last year, there are wonderful views of the Signoria, the Duomo and Santa Croce.

After a morning of intense sightseeing, we head for the cool haven of our room and draw the drapes against the afternoon August sun.  Then, oh sweet siesta!  The double-glazed windows keep out the din of traffic and in the stillness, we dream of Dante, Michelangelo, Botticelli and Brunelleschi…  their treasures all within our reach.

August 2008

All images and reviews copyright 2015 by Ginda Simpson

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Hotel Balestri Firenze

Piazza Mentana, 7, 50122 Firenze, Italy

Hotel Balestri ~ Original watercolor painting by Ginda Simpson