Known for its Italian renaissance and architectural beauty, Florence is an absolute beauty and needs no introduction. Since it’s the capital of Tuscany, it is the epitome of romance and home to the most delectable cuisine. Adding to this list subtly is the beauty of Hotel Savoy which belongs to the Rocco Forte Group, a brand renowned for their luxury and impeccable taste. I simply can’t get over the mesmerizing charm of this hotel that made my first trip to Florence a memory of a lifetime. With its fine mix of contemporary artworks and classic elegance, Hotel Savoy is a sapient blend of magic, history, style and luxury.
The highlight of this hotel is that it occupies a predominant position on Piazza Della Repubblica, one of the major squares of Florence. Dating back to 1431, it was where the Roman Forum once stood tall. This square houses historical cafes which were the jamming point for several artists, writers and poets. As of today this square is always buzzing with tourists and locals who are chilling by the carousel, watching artists perform, sipping coffees in local cafes or shopping goodies in the stores below. The busy square is a real treat to the eye. Besides this, all the sightseeing is a stones throw away from the hotel. The Duomo, Uffizi Gallery, Palazzo Pitti and and the Santa Croce square are just a 5 to 10 min walk away. Hotel Savoy is surrounded by high street and high end boutiques, gelaterias, cafes and cozy restaurants. It is literally in the heart of Florence.
How to Reach:
The hotel is extremely close to the main train station. So either you could walk it up (10 to 15mins) or just take a cab( 5mins) if you have too many bags, that’s what I did. It takes about 25 mins from the Florence airport.
The moment I got off the cab I was greeted by my name by a well dressed sweet hatted doorman, that set the perfect first impression of my stay here. He took care of our luggage and welcomed us in. Our check in was so smooth and got done in no time. From the door man to the receptionist, they all knew my name. The formalities took barely five minutes and we were then escorted to our room. On reaching the room I noticed that the luggage was sitting and arranged well in the walk in closet. This kind of a welcome set the tone for our trip.
The hotel is a perfect blend of art, architecture, style and opulence. Expect a certain old world charm something that will transport you back in time. The interiors are contemporary yet elegant. It’s where tradition and culture coexist with luxury and elegance. Stunning floral arrangements and designer furniture adorn the spaces of the lobby. The hotel also has some stunning art pieces by famous Italian artists. Also, when I say that they made me feel at home I literally meant it. The passage outside the room was decorated with quirky paintings, a sofa and a dining table, so cool right?!
The area outside our room
Room: Executive Suite
Located on the second floor and in the very center of the hotel our executive suite was a true Italian dream. The suite had a beautiful living room, a walk in closet which was big enough to accommodate all our luggage, a study, a huge bedroom, a bathroom and two long balconies, one attached to the living room and the other to the bedroom, both facing the Piazza Della Repubblica. The rooms here are decorated in typical Florentine fashion with hints of dark wood and modern art donning neutral walls. The fabrics are quirky and whimsical with bold colours. With its parquet floors, marble and mosaic beauty, I instantly felt as if I was the queen of this magnanimous kingdom of Florence.
The chic artwork (shoe painting) which was inspired by Florentine heritage just stole my heart and made the room look so alive. The super high ceilings and the bright room made it so tranquil and spacious. I loved the fact that the décor and interior gave it a very homely feel. There were stands with interesting books and even a study to work on. Overall the design and feel was very Tuscan and decadent yet relaxed. It was a treat to see this wonderful coexistence of the past and the present. The bathroom was in all white and had Lorenzo Villoresi Firenze toiletries. He happens to be a famous perfumer and his scents are so enchanting.
The huge balcony overlooking the busy Piazza Della Repubblica was a sight to behold. I gasped when I opened the door and couldn’t believe my eyes. The view was priceless and so was my expression. Believe me when you have a balcony that has such a stunning view of the main square with the blue sky singing rhapsodies you’ll understand, just like I did, that happiness lies in the simple little things.
This was one city where I didn’t want to leave my room, it was a piece of heaven in every sense. I could live in the serenity while the world bustled away downstairs. Every evening they would have a turn down service where they would rearrange and organize my mess, leave fresh towels, new bottles of water, fresh fruits and little treats for us. Guests who book a suite also receive Mercedes airport transfers, a welcome Champagne bottle and personalized concierge experience along with complimentary breakfast.
I was lucky enough to get a tour of the other rooms too and I was pleasantly surprised to see how spacious they all were and each of them had unique designs. You also have an option to choose a Duomo facing room if you want. But I would still choose the busy square over everything!
The hotels on site amenities include a gym that has a stunning view of the Duomo, a Tuscan style restaurant and a bar, a meeting room and a lobby lounge. This lounge located in the lower ground floor forms the main gathering spot for tourists and business associates. It is decorated in spring of colors that come to life and speak a language that is so unrestrained and honest making two strangers bond over not so strange things. Trust me, the location and the service will make up for any absence in this property. They also provide bikes that you could ride around and explore the city.
Restaurant: Irene Firenze
The hotels very own Tuscan bistro, Irene, is named after the mother of Sir Rocco Forte, the head of Rocco Forte hotels, in a deliberate homage to the culinary talents and hospitality of Italian mothers and grandmothers. The essence of Irene is retro chic with dark wood floors, falling yellow lights, touches of lime green and it also offers an alfresco dining situation outside on the square. This is great for watching the hustle and bustle while you sip on your drink.
I landed up having my daily breakfast and dinner here and I used to look forward to these meals. The menu takes inspiration from Tuscan classics and twists them in appetizing flavors . Their traditional spaghetti in tomato basil and beef cooked on a Himalayan salt plate was to die for. One of my most beautiful experiences was having the Valentine’s Day dinner here with a special menu and live performances.
Make sure to drop by at the bar even if you aren’t staying at the hotel. The staff will be very delighted to share with you some exquisite details and stories while you sip on your drink. Just like the locals I spent my days sipping on the classic Italian Spritz.
They had a huge breakfast spread which included fruits, cheeses, cold cuts, bakery breads and croissants, hot items, yoghurts and juices while the eggs, waffles and vegetable juices were made on order. I always enjoyed my breakfast in the outside section watching the busy square come alive. The biggest example of their top notch service is that once they made a special nuttela croissant for me just because I was craving it and happened to mention it to one of the staff members. How sweet is that!
What I loved:
-The staff just melted my heart. We were treated so well, never have I actually felt the touch of luxury like this. They make you feel so comfortable and at home that every tiny need of yours is taken care of.
-The hotel enjoys the most enviable location in Florence. It’s right in the centre of everything.
-My room was truly Italian in every way and I loved that feeling.
-Shopping begins as you step foot outside the hotel. From high end to high street you have it all.
-The food at Irene is something I would go back for.
-I preferred the rooms facing the Piazza Della Repubblica over the Duomo.
-If you book a suite you get personalized concierge throughout your stay.
Service and Conceirge:
Hands down this is the best team in Europe. I have travelled to so many countries and stayed in the most luxurious hotels but never have I felt so special. I can’t thank them enough for every little thing they have done and gone out of their way to make us feel special.
The doorman would offer to keep our bags in the room everytime we returned from a shopping trip. The bartender will always remember your drinks and preferences. The staff in the restaurant remembered our wine preference every day and also our previous days menu. They made us try new dishes everyday. After checking out we left our bags at the reception and went shopping as we had some time on our hand. When we got back they had already called for a taxi and had kept our luggage inside, how efficient is that. Also during our stay we met a few people while chilling at Irene who told us that they have been coming back to the property since the last 7 years. Nothing speaks of success than loyal customers. I definitely felt like royalty throughout my stay here.
The concierge team too was so helpful and kind. They recommended some of the best places to dine and suggested a great vineyard tour. Every little detail was taken care of and booked in advance. A big thank you to Roberto, Camilia, Raphael, Petro, Francesco, Paolo, Dario, Giandarco, Alberto and Claudia – You made our stay so wonderful and perfect!
Address: Hotel Savoy, Piazza della Repubblica 7, Florence, 50123
Tel: +39 055 27 35 1
The experience is everything you would expect from a Rocco Forte Hotel. If you are looking for a luxurious accommodation in the heart of Florence then this should be your pick. I would highly recommend this property for a true taste of five star Italian hospitality.
Do watch the video below to check out my experience.