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Hotel Palazzo Guadagni 3.0

Florence, Tuscany, Italy

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Historic mid-range hotel with beautiful period features
  • Quieter atmosphere south of the river, away from crowded tourist areas
  • Splendid top-floor loggia with beautiful city views and accompanying bar
  • Spacious rooms with original features, minibars, and antique furniture
  • Some rooms with partial views of Palazzo Pitti or the Duomo
  • Free breakfast buffet includes fresh pastries and hot options
  • Comfortable lounge areas ideal for relaxing and reading
  • Full concierge service including local insider’s tips
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout and in rooms
  • Paid valet parking available

Cons

  • South-of-Arno location away from the main city buzz won't please everyone
  • Some rooms don't have air-conditioning
  • We spotted a bit of wear during our 2017 visit
  • Many rooms lack tea- and coffee-making facilities

Bottom Line

Situated on Piazza Santo Spirito and away from hectic tourist crowds, the 15-room Hotel Palazzo Guadagni is a mid-range property with beautiful historic features and individually-designed rooms. Its rooftop loggia has fantastic city views -- a perfect spot for guests to enjoy drinks from the bar. Rooms are slightly worn, but have beautiful original features and modern comforts including flat-screen TVs, minibars, and free Wi-Fi. Some also feature views of Palazzo Pitti or the Duomo, but not all are air-conditioned. A decent breakfast buffet includes fresh pastries and hot options, while concierge services include local insider tips. Valet parking is available for a fee. For a similar historic option closer to the action around the Duomo, try Palazzo Gamba instead.

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Scene

Boutique-sized hotel steeped in history, with beautiful period features and a quiet atmosphere 

This hotel is rich with historic character, and includes beautiful period features like dramatic high ceilings and gorgeous frescos. Built in the 16th century for a wealthy silk merchant and later acquired by the Guadagni family, the hotel has a long history, even serving as a hiding place for Jews during the Second World War. Some furnishings may be a bit worn, but delicate pastel walls, stately sculpted ceilings, and richly toned antique furniture give the authentic feel of a Florentine noble home. The top-floor loggia is a fine example of Florentine architecture, with dramatic sculpted columns and fantastic views -- now converted to an open-air veranda for guests to enjoy. It’s the perfect place to curl up and read on a warm summer evening, and the only sounds you’ll hear are birds chirping, the bells of the nearby Brunelleschi-designed basilica, and locals conversing at the market stalls below. While some of the noise carries into the hotel, it’s not overwhelming, and rooms have double glazing. The authentic vibe is a draw for many, with couples and families from the U.S., Western Europe, Canada, and Australia frequenting the hotel. 

Location

Away from tourist bustle and south of the River Arno, on Piazza Santo Spirito

Palazzo Guadagni’s location south of the river is considered a blessing for those who wish to avoid the overwhelming throngs of tourists found more in the city's more central districts. Piazza Santo Spirito is a destination in itself, with a local street market selling clothes, antiques, and local goods during the day, plus a string of popular restaurants and bars. At the other end of the piazza is the 15th-century Basilico di Santo Spirito, designed by the famous Renaissance architect Brunelleschi, who also mastered the Duomo cathedral’s iconic dome. Major attractions are still close by, with the Palazzo Pitti, Ponte Vecchio, and Uffizi Gallery just three-, eight-, and 10-minute walks, respectively. The Duomo is a 15-minute walk from the hotel, and the airport is 20 minutes away by car.  

Rooms

Spacious, with period features, minibars, and flat-screen TVs, but only some include AC

Palazzo Guadagni’s 15 rooms are all individually designed, with original architectural features including dramatic high ceilings, gorgeous frescos, and original fireplaces. All rooms have traditional antique furniture paired with modern touches such as flat-screen TVs, minibars, central heating, and free safe access. Some rooms don’t have air-conditioning, but all include free Wi-Fi. Windows are double glazed to keep noise to a minimum. Bathrooms are charming, and most of them are spacious, with classic patterned Florentine tiling -- and even one with a secret view to the Duomo from the shower. Rooms come in different shapes and sizes, with varying features including alcoves and balconies, and some have distant partial views of Pitti Palace or the Duomo. Classic Rooms are the smallest room type, meant to accommodate two adults. Superior Double Rooms are larger, while Family Rooms can accommodate up to four. Rooms located on the first floor are separate from the rest of the hotel, and are supplied with tea and coffee facilities to compensate for their lack of direct access to the bar.

Features

Spacious rooftop veranda with splendid city views and bar, decent breakfast buffet, and free Wi-Fi

The splendid top-floor loggia is this hotel's best asset: a comfortable open-air lounging spot with romantic views of the city and Florence’s surrounding hills. Guests are invited to relax here with a drink served from the nearby bar, and there’s a parallel indoor section for chillier days. A breakfast buffet is served in the elegant breakfast room, and includes fresh pastries, fresh fruit, and locally sourced milk and yogurt along with hot items such as scrambled eggs, sausage, and bacon (gluten-free options can be requested). It's included in rates, but gets mixed reviews from previous guests. Full concierge services are available and reception staff have a wealth of local knowledge and recommendations. Parking in the city is a nightmare and never free for visitors, but a paid valet parking service is available so guests don’t have to stress searching for a garage. There’s also free Wi-Fi available throughout the hotel, including on the loggia. 

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Address

Piazza Santo Spirito 9, Florence 50125, Italy

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