Hotel FlorenceDuomo Florence - Piazzale Michelangelo -

budget hotel Florence
via masaccio 228 Florence - tel/fax +39 055 578153 - hotelmasaccio@yahoo.it

FIRST DAY IN FLORENCE

We start again in the afternoon from Piazza degli Uffizi, going from here along the Lungarno (along the Arno - riverside drives) to the Ponte Vecchio, or <>.It is not called the Old Bridge for its aspect today, but because when it was built it took the place of another bridge with Etruscan foundations. Through Via Par Santa Maria past the Loggia del Mercato Nuovo, with its flower stalls and craft stalls, we reach Via Porta Rossa and the tall brick building of Palazzo Davanzati, a 14° century dwelling with a 15° century loggia. We go back to Via Carpaccio to see the Palazzo del Capitani di parte Guelfa (Palace of the Captains of the Guelph Party), of the 14° century. Brunelleschi modified the facade and Vasari added the graceful loggia. From here we pass Borgo Santi Apostoli, where the atmosphere is heightened by the tall stone buildings and narrow alleyways.

After the Church of the Santi Apostoli, by the side of the massive outline of Palazzo Spini Ferroni, we come out into Piazza Santa Trinita. This takes its name, like the bridge it leads to, from the Church of Santa Trinita, begun by Nicola Pisano in 1258, with a 16th century facade by Buontalenti. The interior is one of the earliest examples of Italian Gothic. In the chapels there is important sculpture by GmFaun da Sangallo, Desiderio da Scttignano. Benedetto da Maiano; in the Sassetti Chapel there are frescoes by Ghirlandaio, and his masterpiece a The Adoration of the Shepherds.

After a glance at the lofty Palazzo Bartolini Salimbeni, we come out on to one of the finest of the Lungarni, which takes its name from Palazzo Corsini, one of the very few Baroque palaces in Florence. In the interior is the Corsint Chapel, with several important works such as a Madonna byFilippo Lippi, another by Luca Signorelli- and Raphael's Cartoon for the portrait of Julius II. Our tour of private dwellings in old Florence brings us to Palazzo Rucellai(1451), and the splendid Palazzo Strozzi, begun by Benedetto da Maiano. We are now in Via Tornabuoni, the most elegant street in Florence, and here we will end our first Florentine day

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