5 budget restaurants in Oltrarno Florence

5 Budget Restaurants in Oltrarno Florence

The “Oltrarno” in Florence is generally considered the entire area across the river Arno and also known by the people of Florence as Diladdarno.  It includes the area of Santo Spirito, San Frediano, Palazzo Pitti, Porta Romana, Boboli Garden, Via Maggio as well as a number of churches, museums and palaces that are truly unique. The area is also home of many traditional artisan shops called “Botteghe” from mosaic-makers, wood carvers, antiques, gilders, goldsmiths, shoemakers and more.

The Oltrarno is also known for its lower budget restaurants usually family owned with a few tables but with delicious and inexpensive food. Most of these places are well frequented by tourists and Florentines alike. If you need some hint on how to choose the right restaurants in Florence follow our article here. Here the 5 budget restaurants

1) Antica Trattoria Sabatino

The “Antica Trattoria Sabatino is a family owned restaurant and a true traditional business with affordable prices and quality. This is the restaurant for the everyday occasion, many residents dine there on a daily basis so the feeling is “eating at home“. Product are fresh products and combined with the healthy cooking make this restaurant a must try while touring the Oltrarno. The menu is still written with classic typewriter giving, the name of the tables is also unique not number but location: alla Radio, Alla Porta, Alla Corte, well done Lucia, Massimo and Stefania.

Sabatino economic restaurant in Oltrarno Florence


Address: VIA PISANA,2/r. – (Porta S.Frediano) 50143 FIRENZE – TEL. 055 22 59 55

2) Trattoria La Casalinga

La “Trattoria la Casalinga” is another very typical restaurant in the Oltrarno area right at the corner of Piazza Santo Spirito and Via Maggio so a great location for your tour stop in the Diladdarno. Fixed menu, fresh product, healthy cooking the Trattoria is always busy with tourists and locals alike. Antipasti, primi piatti, contorni and secondi piatti are available on a daily basis plus a special of the day.  View the menu here

Trattoria la Casalinga Restaurant in Oltrarno


Address: Trattoria La Casalinga Via dei Michelozzi, 9r 50125 Firenze

3) Trattoria da Sergio

The “Trattoria da Sergio” is yet another tiny small restaurant owned by a friendly host that is always ready to suggest you great dishes in combination with wine. There aren’t many tables so in the evenings make sure to make a stop by reservation to find place. Great starters, main courses and second dishes with various meets. There are also theme dinners so be sure to check the trattoria da sergio facebook page for updates.

Trattoria da Sergio Restaurant in Oltrarno

4) Trattoria diladdarno

The “Trattoria Diladdarno, is located on the historic via dei Serragli. A small white entrance door delivers an unsuspected wide room colorful and cozy. The room leads to an internal courtyard, adorned with aromatic plantswhere to find comfort and quietness, far from the urban rumor. It’s like an hidden small garden. 
The chef offers personal and genuine traditional dishes of Florentine and Tuscan cuisine, fresh ingredients, Italian meats, seasonal vegetables, extra virgin olive oil of the colli fiorentini.
The proposal is an excellent value for money, the choice to offer water and service, the propensity for a spontaneous and informal relationship with foreign customers, as well as with locals.

Trattoria diladdarno in Florence Oltrarno


Address: Via dei Serragli, 108r 50125 Firenze, Italia

5) Osteria Tripperia Il Magazzino

Trippa (guts) is a very typical dish in Florence, along with lampredotto (intestine interiors) are not meant for everyone. For Asians is a peace of cake eating such delicious parts of the animal but other westerner countries are less prone into trying it. Nevertheless it’s worth to mention that a very inexpensive way to consume a meal is by eating Panino with Lampredotto or Trippa salad. The Osteria Tripperia il Magazzino offers also primi piatti and secondi piatti, with or without trippa. You can visit the official Osteria Tripperia Il Magazzino facebook page here.

trattoria-il-trippaio-magazWe hope you’ve enjoyed the list above! Check out additional resources for Oltrarno here, and here.

Follow Florentine Touch’s board Florence Oltrarno on Pinterest.

Where To Buy Fresh Fish in Florence

Where To Buy Fresh Fish in Florence

Florence isn’t by the sea but is also not far from it. Supposedly fresh fish hits Florence on one particular day: Tuesdays (also Fridays). Why on Tuesday in particular is explained by the urban legend (that might have been true a while ago) that fishing boats leaved on Fridays and come back on Mondays delivering for transport on Mondays. Fresh fish hits the markets on Tuesday morning.

Where to buy fresh fish in Florence

You might as well notice that some restaurants offer daily special’s with fish as a course on Tuesdays. Urban Legends with a bit of contemporary confirmation. Mind the legend if you are looking to buy some fresh fish to take and cook at home, this is the article for you: the complete list of places where to buy fresh fish in Florence!

In NO particular order.

Pescheria Dolfi Fulvio in Piazza del Mercato Centrale

Since the early twentieth century the Fish Shop Dolfi Fulvio, inside the Central Market in Florence has always meant the highest quality in the choice of fresh fish for the table. Makes home deliveries and supplies of live crustaceans.

Fish Shop Dolfi Fulvio


Pescheria & Restaurant San Pietro

The Pescheria and Seafood Restaurant in Florence is located right by Florence main train station of Santa Maria Novella. A friendly and warm atmosphere where you can eat, drink and chat.
You can also enjoy appetizers and cocktails quality. The culinary proposal is based on fish, but there are specialties suitable for vegetarians. It’s a great place for fish shopping and also business launch or aperitif with its cocktail bar.

Pescheria San Pietro Firenze


Address Via Luigi Alamanni 7, Firenze Italy, official website.

Fiaschetteria del Pesce in Ponte Alla Vittoria

Fiaschetteria del Pesce Firenze

Here we are a few steps from the Cascine park in one of the most busiest squares. In the morning you can buy fresh fish or, more later on, even cooked, take away. The place is not very big: it is almost entirely occupied by the long counter divided in half between fresh seafood and cooked down: octopus with potatoes, shrimp salad and artichokes, salt cod with leeks, swordfish marinated .. plus they also expressed of the former. On the walls of the stools and a small shelf where to eat. At lunchtime it is full of people who work in the surrounding area.

Address: 5/R, P. Gaddi – 50142 Firenze (FI)

Pescheria Montini in Borgognissanti

This fish shop is perhaps the oldest of Florence, acquired in the 80s by Massimo Montini (third generation of fishmongers) the fish is fresh every day. He goes to choose it in person twice a week at the fish market of Viareggio, on Mondays and Thursdays, other days bring him exposures suppliers. Favored the Tyrrhenian from which the cockles in late winter, octopus, cicadas and mullet in February, the octopus in June, anchovies and mackerel in the spring. In October, coming from the Mediterranean tuna, the sword and amberjack. Complete the offer: live crabs and oysters from Britain, Scottish salmon and cod wet Norwegian (Thursday and Friday).

Pescheria Montini in Borgognissanti


Address: Borgo Ognissanti, 101 Firenze FI Italy

Pescheria Moreno in Via Pisana Florence South

The Fishery Moreno was born in the sixties by Moreno Gallori that started and ran the business until the seventies. The management of the shop was continued in the following years by his brother Mauro, who operated the shop until his retirement in 2003, when the shop was acquired by the current owner, Daniele Gallerini, wholesale seller for over 40 years. Daniele was also a supplier of the workshop itself, and decided to keep the name that was already historical and well known throughout Florence.

pescheria moreno firenze


The address is  Via Pisana, 211 50143 Firenze, the Pescheria has also a website with recipes on cooking fish don’t miss *Le ricette di Moreno*

A few more Pescherie in the central market of Sant’Ambrogio and San Lorenzo

As you might guess Pescherie are also located inside the markets of Sant’Ambrogio and Mercato Centrale in San Lorenzo.

Il Barabino in Piazza del Mercato Centrale San Lorenzo

Monday to Friday 7 am to 2 pm
Saturday 7 am to 4 pm
Inside Mercato Centrale di San Lorenzo (map E/F2)
ph. +39 055 213774

Barabino was the nickname of the grandfather of Alexander, now owner of this school of fish in the St. Lawrence that his grandfather – hence the odd name of the fish – bought in the early postwar years. Since then the whole family has been dedicated to this activity also branching out to other stores in the city. Direct selection to the fish market of Viareggio, twice a week, and daily contacts with suppliers viareggini the guarantee on the bench fresh fish and absolute quality all rounds.

Massimiliano Giani “Il Pesciaiolo” Mercato Centrale San Lorenzo

Monday to Friday 7 am to 2 pm
Saturday 7 am to 4 pm
Inside Mercato Centrale di San Lorenzo (map E/F2)
ph. +39 055 294890

When fishing limitations were less strict, Massimiliano Giani was the king of the blue-fin tuna in Florence. Today that tuna fishing is more regulated is hard to find at good quality and at an affordable price. Massimiliano employs all his professionalism and capabilities selecting only Tyrrhenian Sea fish (hake, octopus, shrimp, blue fish . The Florentines, hold him in high esteem.

Fabio Gallerini at Market of Sant’Ambrogio

Monday to Saturday 7 am to 2 pm
Outside Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio (map J4)
ph. + 39 055 2341113

To ensure fresh fish on the counter all week, Fabio goes in person to the fish markets of Livorno and Viareggio 3/4 times a week. Every Thursday even drives to the coast twice, in the morning and the afternoon. Friday is a big party! Bass, sea bream, octopus, scorpion fish, gurnard, skipjack or bonito, sanpietri, shrimp pink, red and scampi.

Pescheria Ultima Spiaggia inside The Mercato Centrale San Lorenzo

Monday to Friday 7 am to 2 pm
Saturday 7 am to 4 pm
Inside Mercato Centrale di San Lorenzo (map E/F2)
ph. +39 055 213007

Not only a fish shop but also a place for a quick snack based on fish: fried and griledl.  Lorenzo Boccianti (in business for 25 years) not only sells good fresh fish, but you can order on the spot a nice bag of fried seafood (squid, shrimp and octopus) or grilled fish (tuna, swordfish, squid and cuttlefish). Yummy!

For an even more detailed list check out the Pagine Gialle list of Pescherie in Florence, Italy.

The largest fish shop in Florence, for bulk buying: The Iliopesca in Viale Francesco Talenti

Via Foggini 20 56100
Tel. (+39)055 7321434
Tel . (+39)055 7320689


Via Campofiore 122 (P.zza Alberti) – New Shop

Tel. (+39) 055 0462335

Ilio Pesca Firenze

A bit outside of the main tourist track here a tradition of fishery business. This place also sells to the final consumer but also to Fish shop, restaurants themselves. The activity of the “brothers” in the fisheries sector, starts after the end of the war, with street trading of fresh local seafood. In 1960 there was the opening of the first fish in the center of Empoli, up to the birth of the company Primapesca Spa for business to ‘wholesale fresh produce. In the early 70s with the advent of new techniques for the cold storage of fish products, the company was founded Iliopesca used to trade in frozen fish d ‘import. Since January 2008 PRIMAPESCA S.p.A. was built by the group Iliopesca, becoming an internal division fresh fish; Today the group is one of the leading companies in Italy for ‘procurement and distribution of all kinds of fresh and frozen fish, can guarantee always high quality standards, using direct reports, with primary producers around the world .

We hope you’ve enjoyed this article and hope it will be helpful for your next fish shopping experience!

Visit Florence – An Archaeological Trail Underneath Palazzo Vecchio

Visit Florence – An Archaeological Trail Underneath Palazzo Vecchio

For over seven centuries the Palazzo della Signoria, better known as “Palazzo Vecchio“, has been the symbol of the civil power of the city of Florence. Built between the late thirteenth and early fourteenth century to house the Priors of the Arts and the Justice Banner, the supreme governing body of the city, over time has been the subject of numerous expansion and transformation. Its current appearance is due mostly to the great works of renovation and interior decoration that were made in the mid-sixteenth century, to adapt it to the new function of the ducal palace to which Cosimo I de ‘Medici had intended. After the transfer of the Medici court at Palazzo Pitti continued to host the Wardrobe and various government offices, until in 1871 it became the seat of the Municipality of Florence.

Musei Civici Fiorentini Palazzo Vecchio

The foundations of the Palazzo Vecchio are based on the ancient Roman theater of Florentia dated between the end of the first century and the beginning of the II after Christ, a large theater that is estimated had a capacity between 8,000 and 10,000 spectators and which today, after a long campaign of excavations you can see the remains.

In the theater, the auditorium was in Piazza della Signoria and the scene was towards the Via dei Leoni and stretched up to the palace Gondi. It’s interesting to notice in fact that Via dei Gondi the small street that takes from Piazza Signoria to Borgo dei Greci has that *strange* inclination.

Old Roman Theater plan Palazzo Vecchio

After a long process of digging and restoration is finally possible to take a tour underneath Palazzo Vecchio and enjoy the archaeological trail below the Palace.

The trail is still partially unfinished and is not very long but it’s still very fascinating. There is also a support video that summarizes the evolution of the built and helps to better understand where you are and what you’re seeing.

If you can’t wait to be in Florence for peeking into Palazzo Vecchio the Google Art Project has a walk-able tour of the Palace will come in help, but not yet of the archaeological trail.

For more information: Musei Civici Fiorentini official website

Visiting Hours

April 1 to September 30
Every day except Thursday: 9.00-24.00
Thursday: 9:00 to 14:00
October 1 to March 31
Every day except Thursday: 9:00 to 19:00
Thursday: 9:00 to 14:00
Admission: (+ Museum Archaeological route) € 12.00
the only path archaeological € 2.00


10 Top Restaurants With View in Florence

10 Top Restaurants With Terrace & View in Florence

10 top restaurants with view in florence

Florence can be appreciated nose up or nose down, it depends on your preferences! Florence is well known for being a “Museo a Cielo Aperto” which literally translates into “Open Sky Museum” and this couldn’t be more true. It’s fact you will be walking around the city with your nose up looking at buildings, statues, churches and a lot more! When it comes to dining you have many options a few of them is dining and looking down at the immense architectural and artistic treasure the city has to offer. Let’s review the 10 Top Restaurants With View in Florence.

In random order…

1) Terrazza Brunelleschi by Hotel Baglioni

The Terrazza Brunelleschi, is located on the fifth floor of the Grand Hotel Baglioni. In winter you can sit in the elegant room with a large panoramic window, while in spring and summer, the atmosphere becomes even more magical: dine in the moonlight, surrounded by plants and flowers. Every corner of the terrace with superb views over Florence, Giotto’s Campanile and Brunelleschi’s Dome, to the surrounding hills. The kitchen is Tuscan-inspired, modern twist. Be sue to check out their 360° video and gallery! And Facebook page!


Terrazza Brunelleschi logo


2) Hotel alla Scaletta

Another roof restaurant in Florence is at the Hotel Alla Scaletta. Open from May to October, the Panorama Restaurant offers dining under the stars and candlelight, with views of the greatest masterpieces of Florence, from the Pitti Palace to the Cathedral, passing near the Boboli Gardens. In the kitchen, are staged carefully selected raw materials and traditional Tuscan dishes and Mediterranean. For those who want there is also the pizza.


terrazza la scaletta hotel in florence


3) Golden View Open Bar

An experience not to be missed in Florence is also to dine overlooking the Arno. To prove it, one of the most appreciated terraces of the center is the Golden View Open Bar. It has a window overlooking the Ponte Vecchio and the Uffizi and in the spring or summer you can eat outdoors, admiring the Arno. The cuisine ranges from Tuscan dishes such as Florentine steak to raw fish and Mediterranean recipes to pizzas, topped with ingredients chosen with care.


Golden View Open Bar View Restaurant


4) Piazzale Michelangelo by Restaurant La Loggia

From Piazzale Michelangelo, then, a terrace from which to dominate with the eye the whole city is that of the Restaurant La Loggia. With a panoramic room in winter and an outdoor terrace for spring and summer, is located in a historic building, designed by one of the most famous architects of Florence, Giuseppe Poggi. The kitchen is entrusted to the wise guidance of Chef Franco Carnevale, combining creativity and attention to the raw materials, always seasonal.


La Loggia Restaurant with view florence


5) The Convent Marignolle

Yet another address as charming note for a special dinner overlooking Florence is The Convent Marignolle. It is located in a restored Renaissance villa in a wise, surrounded by twenty acres of gardens, and offers a breathtaking view of the architectural wonders of the city and surrounding hills. In the kitchen, the Tuscan tradition is carried out with care and sophistication.

il conventino restaurant with view in florence


6) Ristorante il Coccodrillo

The Croccodrillo Restaurant Florence gives you the unforgettable opportunity to dine in quality, within luxurious surroundings while looking  over the wonderful city of Florence. It offers a diverse and creative menu selection combining international cuisine with that refined touch of Italian, with a wine list to appeal even the discerning palate. This luxurious rooftop restaurant boasts an incredible panoramic view stretching across the beautiful city of Florence. Taking in the River Arno and out across towards Piazza del Duomo.


restaurant with view il coccodrillo



7) Terrazza Panoramica Palazzo Magnani Feroni

Palazzo Magnani Feroni is a refined luxury accommodation in Florence with a truly rare and unique feel. Step inside this sanctuary of style and Renaissance and meet the most seductive side of Florence. The panoramic terrace is on the roof of Palazzo Magnani Feroni. This is truly a special, privileged space that offers breathtaking views of the entire city of Florence, from a standpoint very few people can enjoy.


palazzo magnani feroni restaurant in florence

8) Sesto on Arno 6th floor The Westin Excelsior

SE·STO on Arno the rooftop bar and restaurant of the Westin Excelsior’s  Florence has finally re opened after an inactive period of approximately 20 years. It is almost entirely glass made. It’s unique location provides a breathtaking view of the whole city. The interiors feature along a curved wall covered in luxurious leather matching both the bar and restaurant. A wine cellar presented like precious jewels separates the bar and restaurant. On the outside two large terraces one for the restaurant and one to the bar.


sesto on arno rooftop restaurant in florence



9) Restaurant Aurora in Fiesole

Fiesole is  small hill town right above Florence that offers great views of the city as well as an amphitheater and Etruscan ruins. What’s better location for a day trip and a romantic dinner overlooking Florence? Aurora restaurant in Fiesole claims the most beautiful terrace on Florence! Located in the central square of Fiesole, with a 360 ° view of Florence. The restaurant has 90 seats inside and 100 on the rooftop terrace. From here you can enjoy the most romantic atmosphere thanks to the veranda and summer terrace, ideal place for business lunches and events.


restaurant aurora view on florence



10) Terrazza 45 Fiesole

Another elegant restaurant in Fiesole, Terrazza 45 offers a large window overlooking Florence from the hill town. A new restaurant soft chic born today in Fiesole, in an exclusive and accurate in every detail where you can taste simple and authentic flavors. Will serve even your breath with our beautiful terrace overlooking our beloved Florence.


terrazza 45 fiesole restaurant view view

Luggage And Storage Services In Florence

Luggage And Storage Services In Florence

While travelling abroad dragging around luggage can be a real pain, especially when you need just a few hours to kill waiting to move on to the next holiday destination. For those who plan to stay in Florence longer, the problem can be even bigger after some additional kilos of purchases done during the stay.

How to ship some goods back to home, which services are available, where to find them? We’ll do our best to answer all these question so read on!

Luggage storage service for tourists is something that is widely available at all main train station throughout Italy. It’s an expensive service but organized and simple to use. It’s well suited from few hours to 1 or 2 days.

luggage and storage services in Florence Italy

Storage Spaces ARE Available at SMN Train Station.

The Florence Santa Maria Novella Train Station (SMN for short) offers convenient storage spaces for most of your luggage from a few hours to a full day. Please do consider that the storage space is locker size so enough for 1 item / baggag per locker.

The service is available every day right next to the train station’s track number 16 on the main floor. It’s open from 6 am to 11 pm. Tariffs starts at:

  • 6,00 € for the first 5 hours.
  • 0,90 € for every hour exceeding the 6th until the 12th hours.
  • 0,40 € for every hour exceeding the 12th.

Note that the storing of luggage for 24 hours will incur in the following fee: 6,00 € for the first six hours + 5,40 € for the following six hours. The first 12 hours will cost you 11,40 € while the following 12 hours 4,80.

What About Storage Space At The Airport?

The Florence Peretola Airport is still a reasonably small and busy airport. There are approved plans to enlarge the passenger hall and services but it’s still an ongoing work. It is also a NON transit so either you depart or arrive: it’s unlikely to have wait over time. Anyhow if you do have to leave the airport the best option is to take your luggage with you and head to train station if you just have a few hours to wait.

Long Term Rental Storage Services.

The North American typical self storage facility is something not very common in Italy so expecyt very few services designed to let you *pack your house*! Italians have the tendency of moving from one place to another with timing or using the help of a moving company which does hold the good until it’s possible to deliver to the new place.

Many of our costumers stay in Florence for extended period of time: from few weeks to several months. During these extended period of time the need for a temporary storage area can be essential. Moving from one apartment to another one, going back home for a month and then returning to a different property.

These are all cases were does not make sense to move all your belongings and send them home to then bring them back. Some property owner might be willing to keep your belongings for a few weeks but there are cases where a more durable solution is needed.

Short term rental self storage spaces are though becoming more present and Florence has luckily one.

self-storage-service-florenUnfortunately the choice is currently very limited at least for now, the best option is to opt for services like Silea Self Storage or  BoxOk. The latter one is a slightly different service: you send your belongings to them and they store the boxes in a deposit in North area of Italy. When you need one, two, more or all your boxes they will deliver them to your door in Italy.

Alternatively you can look for some “Facchinaggio e servizio deposito e magazzinaggio” companies which are basically moving / relocation services with storage facilities. Keep in mind these are more suitable for locals vs tourists. A saved search of these companies is available here.

Shipping & Forwarding Services in Florence

There are chances you will prefer simply shipping your items back home to lower your baggage weight and don’t incur in ticket overcharge for excessive weight. Regular services include DHL, FedEx, UPS are all available in Florence as back home.

A very popular service among tourists is the one provided by MailBoxes ETC Florence. Many of their offices are located in the city center and can assist very professionally shipping to most countries. They can suggest what can be shipped, any import duty tax on goods and many other useful information.

In same cases MBE offices might willing to store your suitcases as well.

Thanks to:

Shipping Services Logo in Florence


How To Find a Good Restaurant in Florence

How To Find a Good Restaurant in Florence, Tips!

Tuscany and Florence are home of one of the best cuisines in Italy with simple yet delicious dishes such as Ribollita, Bistecca, Pappa al Pomodoro. In this article we will help you choosing the right restaurant in Florence without having to look at guides, recommendation or site’s reviews!

Certainly TripAdvisor, Yelp and other online resources can be helpful tools to choose a great restaurant based on reviews. Reviews are great but can be also very controversial based on a mix of  very personal impression, misleading judgment and self interpretation. There are also many cases where competition have bad reviews written to throw dirt to a particular competitor.

The ability of choosing the right restaurant without a guide, recommendation or review is more of an art than a science and it takes a sort of a sixth sense to master, but there are tips to follow that can help you, read on!

Find a restaurant in florence google snapshop

Call in waiters, cooked pizzas & pastas outside the restaurant?

Dense tourist areas are famous for restaurants whose waiters literally grab you from the street to sit you in. Some other restaurants might also display fake pizzas or cooked food on the sidewalk. Cute but of very bad taste are statues of chef’s or sample set up tables to indicated that’s a restaurant. Well, the above cases are clear indication of a typical tourist place, we don’t say they are all bad but for sure far from being a place where true Florentine’s would go. You are warned.

Small family restaurants!

Italy’s economy, once upon a time, when there was an economy 🙂 was mainly made of small family run businesses and this also happened in the food industry. We don’t want to be so dramatic, you still have plenty of choice of restaurants in Florence. It’s easy to say that about 80% of Italian and Florence restaurants are still family run business where the husband or wife sit in the kitchen and relatives work table service. This highly family oriented style gives each restaurant a unique touch and a unique cuisine with the feeling of eating in someone else’s home.

Look out for locals!

Are locals, or people looking like Florentine’s sitting inside? If so, well that’s a good sign the restaurant isn’t a scam and it’s actually really good. This is even more true when you see locals at lunch time. Florentine’s eating out at lunch time only look for good and affordable places: step in, and find your seat!

Restaurants around and inside fresh markets!

Inside the Florence Mercato Centrale you can find restaurants that are famously tasty. Generally, restaurants located within walking distance of fresh markets are good. Maybe it’s the proximity to fresh products or even relative’s businesses of owners inside the market, fact is you can’t go wrong.

Choose an apartment in Florence How

Pay attention to business hours!

There is no such thing in Italy / Florence culture as eating dinner at 5 o’clock in the evening! Italian meal times are pretty standard from 12:00 pm till 14:30 pm and from 19:00 till 22:00 or little later. If you see people (most likely tourists) forking pasta outside the above time frame, well you are advised.

Simple decoration, simple service!

Overly fancy decorated restaurants, unless 5 star awarded by Michelin guide are a bit in doubt. We have nothing against fancy decoration, if it’s of taste why not but usually too much attention on the atmosphere usually hides little attention in the kitchen. Theme restaurants such as ethnic places are excluded, we are talking about genuine Tuscan / Florence restaurants which are usually rather simple. Being greeted while in line with a glass of prosecco or cheering your waiting with warm bread or schiacciata, are great signs of care and service.

Short, handwritten and type-machine printed menus!

There are still restaurants in Florence with menus printed with old typing machines. A short menu is usually another hint for good food: daily fresh products cooked in small quantities and consumed everyday. Look also for the addition of 1 or 2 today’s specials as a plus. Very long menus with a great variety in a small place, doesn’t sound too good as most products will need to be frozen. Places with handwritten and photocopied menus might look unprofessional but they are also indications of home style and usually yummy places.

Florence Typical foods

Hotels and Lounge Bars!

In Florence it’s more and more difficult to find small hotels offering *Pensione Completa* or *full board* where you’d have a buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner included in price. Most hotels now offer only rooms with some additional services such as a small bar or breakfast. Larger hotels from 4 stars and up still include half board or full board to their packages and it’s not mandatory to be a guest to enjoy their cuisine. 4 and 5 hotels do have very curated meals and high standard products so you can’t go wrong. We’ll point some of them out in our next article.

Lounge Bars, Enoteche, are also great places where you can discover great food. It’s more about snacks and small meals but they can offer delicatessen and combinations you don’t usually experience in standard restaurants.

Ready to master your sixth sense?

So here we shared some tips that are easy to follow: a bit of observation before entering the place you are considering will be enough. There is also another skill which might be a little more difficult to master but can be perfected with practice and some bad experiments.

It’s actually the look of the restaurant the combination of furnishing, atmosphere, sign, people, smells that can make you distinguish a good restaurant from the others. It’s hard to explain it’s probably as the inborn fashionable look Florentine and Italians have with clothes. There isn’t a particular science is just the choice of colors, combination of elements that come natural in Italian versus other countries.

Practice with your restaurant search and let us know your results.

We hope this can help you becoming a master in spotting the right restaurants for your stay in Florence with no guides helping you!


Where to Dump Your Garbage in Florence!

Where to Dump Your Garbage in Florence!

As promised we’re back on blogging we missed it a lot and we are looking forward to keep posting interesting notes about living in Florence for tourists of both short and long term stays.

Most costumers ask us how to deal with garbage in their apartments. How does it work in Florence? Do we have recycling, does the city have a garbage collector service, how many times a week is collected ? Read on and find out where to dump your garbage in Florence during your stay in holiday apartments.

Where you dump garbage in Florence

The garbage service collecting system in Florence is operated by a municipal company named quadrifoglio. The company was born in 1955 covering mainly the area of Florence city center, later on by the early 2000 the municipal areas of Firenze, Campi Bisenzio, Calenzano, Sesto Fiorentino and Signa joined forces starting the Consortium Quadrifoglio and then in 2003 the Quadrifoglio s.p.a. Servizi Ambientali Area Fiorenina Spa.

Is it possible to do recycling in Florence, How does it work?

The garbage you collected during your stay in an apartment or room CAN AND HAS TO BE RECYCLED, it’s mandatory and it’s also a beautiful way to respect the city and your, our environment. Recycling in Italy is called “raccolta differenziata” You can separate garbage into three main groups: paper, plastics and organics.

  1. Organics are the everyday food leftovers, vegetables, meats, bones, fats.
  2. Paper includes cards, boards, cleaning paper, tissues, cleanex and generally yes, paper!
  3. Plastics include cans, glasses, empty cleaning products bottles, empty beer and wine bottles etc.

Where do I take the trash out of my apartment?

Once you’re done with your diligent work of separating the garbage is time to dump it somewhere, so where? In every main street or square there are large containers more or less of the size of a small car and came in different colors: blue, yellow and another one in blue color but with the shape of a bell! Yellow containers are for paper, blue box shaped containers are for organics and general garbage and blue bell shaped containers are for plastics and glass.

Here an example of street garbage containers:

Florence Garbage Disposal Containers

What You Shouldn’t Dump in General Garbage Containers!

It’s unlikely that short term tenants will have to deal with out of the ordinary trash such as batteries, motor oils, electrical equipment, expired pharmaceuticals, printing toners but sometime can be the case. The best option is to inform your landlord that will take care of the proper recycling of higher concern garbage. If you want to be extra diligent batteries can be given to phones or electronic shops offering this service. Expired pharmaceuticals can be taken to pharmacies, printing toners can be taken to printing shops, exhausted oils can be taken to special stations at Quadrifoglio or collected by a moving truck which cruise areas of the city at certain times.

It’s interesting to know that cooking oil shouldn’t be dumped in the sink but collected in bottles and then taken to these special stations. This is not a common practice yet and if you are in doubt contact your landlady on this. For a full list of all types of garbage and where to dump it follow the “Rifiutario” link here.

The New Ground Level Disposal Units!

Let’s admit that the above solution leaves a lot to desire in terms of style and decor for a city like Florence. Some containers gets old, rusty, plus they move like ghosts from one spot to the another when moved closer by some citizens to the front of their home! The result is that sometime garbage spills out, it’s smelly and it doesn’t look good at all!


The administration on the wave of the latest European trend of public sustainable decoration have worked on a new solutions to tackle the problem. There are already 42 dug in the ground stations which form a better looking island where Florence citizens and tourists can dump their garbage. As their moving cousins they also come in different colors with icons representing what you should dump in. Here is a map with a list of all the ground level disposal units opened so far!

In the Era of Mobile, there is An App for Trash!

For geeks somewhat fluent with Italian there is also a convenient app called Trash Cube for both Android and Iphone that you can download and install to keep track of your garbage disposal closest areas. It also notify you when the truck comes by and other useful information on proper garbage disposal.

The trash cube application

We’re back on blogging, finally!

We’re back on blogging, finally!

It has been quite a roller-coaster in these past two years, nothing pleasant but a rather scary ride that took us up and down, left and right from hell and back, really! If we look at our latest article dates back to…freaking February 2014, almost a year.

Back on Blogging after a long time


So why such a long silence, why no more posts, why no social network activities, out of business? Quite near it but luckily that didn’t happen, no! Long story short over the course of the year 2013 we’ve been working on a re-coding of our software platform running under our websites for Florence and for Venice. The long term project was in fact to offer our service to more cities including Rome and Milan, we’re getting to them as well.

Unfortunately this *experiment* had  a very bad turn around and forced us to drop the project, after a lot of spending and a start over from scratch. From March 2014 till end of October 2014 the site has been ported to magic WordPress where our site and blog now live together; with a much better improved health, flexibility and hopefully a much brighter future.

We’ll update this story with more details in the weeks to come. For now we’re finally settled and it’s time to come back writing some more about our beautiful city of ours: Florence.

Kindest, Thanks & Apologies Firenze Lodging!


You Can Pay Cash for Rentals in Florence Again

Be or not to Be, take or not to take cash… Italy is once again proved a realm of chaos in terms of rules and laws that conflict and bang one with the other.  A little over a month ago the busy Italian Government passed a law enforcing all transactions for rental fees to be processed only via wire transfer throwing into panic small property owners on how they would see paid their rental dues without alternative payment tools. For more info on we covered the article here.

You can Bring Money for Your Next Rental in Florence

Well, in a classic Spaghetti and Mandolinos style the State of Pulcinella has once again stained itself with fresh Pomodoro’s sauce in front of the eyes of everyone, especially foreigners.  Not even a month after throwing off the red warnings that severe fines would be applied for rental fee payed in cash law has put the reverse allowing once again cash transactions under the common top of 999 €.

For your information foreigners can pay in cash higher amounts by providing a copy of the passport to the clerk, another great way to provide full privacy of your shopping habits!

It didn’t take much time to the geniuses ruling our country that simply wasn’t feasible nor traceable and insanely complex to put into practice, 35 days this time was enough for the ring a bell at least now it’s a relief for property owners.

Once again the bottom line is that our beautiful country is a great place for holiday and one horrific place to work in, laws contradicts in terms of weeks, what you assume doing right today is no longer true tomorrow, you might wonder why we are a record breaking country with 64th Governments in the last 40 years…well you get the Why.

Our ex-city Mayor and now Prime Minister Matteo will have a lot of work to do, granted they will let him, to lift the country up a bit to a more modern, solid and productive working environment.

But please stay tuned because there is another upcoming thrilling article on how from February 1st Italian Banks will automatically deduct 20% of any amount received from overseas!

Article information source from Sole 24 Ore,

Say bye-bye to San Lorenzo Florence Market?

The vibrant and busy area of San Lorenzo is changing shape for good as the Florence city administration is clearing stalls and stands and relocate the flee market “bancarelle” to a new designated area.

San Lorenzo Market

San Lorenzo is the historical market right next to Piazza San Giovanni (the Duomo square) home of the magnificent church of San Lorenzo.  The area has been for decades the tourist souvenir’s and leather shopping street.

The city administration has rolled out a plan to re-qualify the entire area and offer more walking space clearing out the two long lines of stalls that have characterized the district for many years.

The walking has never been that easy with crowds of tourists trying to commute and shop from one sightseeing spot to the next. It’s a good thing, bad thing? It’s early to tell but for sure offering tourists little more space especially in front of the beautiful church of San Lorenzo can not do harm.

Picture credit: pawd & video credit: controradiotv