Florence is famous for its rich history, and you can taste a small slice of that by visiting this wonderful boutique hotel. Housed in a large nineteenth-century building, with a real-life Marquis living downstairs (Marchese Torrigiani), the hotel enjoy views over the stunning Giardino Torrigiani – Europe’s largest private garden within city limits. ‘Hidden gem’ may be an overused phrase, but with B&B truly lives up to the term.
AdAstra hotel review
Rooms & facilities
There are 14 rooms at AdAstra, varying both in size and views. All are fairly fabulous though, with vibrant interiors and a claw-foot bathtub in each – not something you many B&Bs offer. If budget allows, we thoroughly recommend one of the King Balcony Rooms, which have double doors that open up onto the wraparound terrace.
The decor at AdAstra is deftly done: a combination of mid-century Italian furniture, sculptural light fittings, intriguing artworks and clever little design touches (we liked the handwritten musings scrawled around a mirror). Traditional and modern aesthetics are blended seamlessly, while the colour palette balances muted tones with punches of bold colour.
In terms of facilities, each room has a kettle and espresso machine, DVD player, HD TV, free wifi and luxurious toiletries. There’s also a concierge service – the staff were full of great recommendations for the best pizza and gelato when we asked! – and parking is available by prior arrangement.
Food & drink
Set yourself up for a day of sightseeing with the buffet breakfast, which includes local cheeses, prosciutto, warm bread, pastries, fruit and boiled eggs. In keeping with the hotel’s diverse decor, the delicious spread is laid out on a former optician’s display cabinet in the eclectic salon, but everyone takes their plate outside to enjoy breakfast on the terrace.
The terrace! It’s enormous – 270 square-foot wrapping around two sides of the building, with comfy sofas and loungers so you can recover from the bustling crowds of central Florence. The terrace overlooks the gardens, and there’s congruity between the two courtesy of lush greenery and the magical sense that you’ve found a secret oasis in the heart of this well-trodden city.
What to do nearby
AdAstra is accessed from a quiet street in the trendy district of Oltrarno, a neighbourhood south of the river. It’s more traditionally Florentine than the tourist hotspots, as evidenced by the number of local people out and about in the nearby bars, cafes and restaurants. However, it’s only a short stroll to sights such as Ponte Vecchio, and you can easily stroll to Florence’s big-hitters such as Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, the Uffizi and Galleria dell’Accademia.
Friends or couples who want to combine sightseeing with the chance to chill-out.
For more information, visit the website.