Of course, you can always do Florence as a day-trip. But reconsider: staying in this beautiful city means that you can be the first in line at the Uffizi, or better yet, one of the last in the galleries at closing time, knowing that the others are hightailing it elsewhere. And with hotels like these to choose from, you might want to go ahead and stay a whole week.
Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Properties were classified as City or Resort based on their locations and amenities.
Not surprisingly, the Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, which is set in a former Medici palace, impressed guests thanks to its over-the-top setting and polished service. “A very big wow factor,” wrote one reader, while another added, “One of the best hotels in the world — simply magical.” Though it is located within walking distance of the city’s most popular sites and museums, the property’s expansive gardens, tranquil pool, and freestanding spa allow visitors to feel they are far away from the crowds.
The boutique feel of J.K. Place Firenze is its main appeal — “small and elegant” wrote one reader — with the Tuscan property joining its sister outposts in Rome and Capri on this year’s best lists. The location in the glorious Piazza Santa Maria Novella couldn’t be finer, and visitors praise the outstanding service. One reader wrote, “The hands-on attention is unbeatable.”
For those who prefer to look down on it all, few views are more riveting than that from Villa Cora, a beloved hotel nestled in the hills above the historic city. The 19th-century villa, located inside a park, has been transformed into a luxury hotel with an old-world feel.
Indeed, all five of the top hotels are touted for their luxurious care and excellent locations. And whether large or small, each is a wonderful place to put up your aching feet after a long day of sightseeing.
Overlooking the Arno and beside the Ponte Vecchio, this boutique hotel is the study in understated elegance one would expect from a member of the Lungarno Collection, owned by the Ferragamo family. The public spaces are intimate — there is no check-in desk; instead, guests are taken to the living room and lounge and offered a drink while the necessary paperwork is filled out — but the 37 rooms and suites, which were decorated in sophisticated, neutral tones by Michele Bonan, are spacious. “Elegant, romantic, easy,” summarized one reader, while another added, “The best service we have ever received in any hotel.”