Luxury lodging in Florence… Bargain priced !
One peek at the pictures above and you can tell that we really lived it up in our accommodations while in Florence. The price, however, was about one quarter of the going rate for hotel rooms in the area. It was just 50 Euro a night per single room.
As some of you may recall I wrote about staying in Italy’s monasteries when I spent a month there in 2001. A Doctor friend of mine at the hospital where I worked had clued me in on this amazing way to save $$.
He loaned me his copy of “The Guide to Lodging in Italy’s Monasteries”, by Eileen Barish and it set the wheels in motion. On that trip we stayed in 8 different monasteries and each one was an adventure. Some of them were very strict (especially the one in Venice), but they were all exceptionally clean. Most were located in historic buildings in magical places. The views from my window in the room where we stayed in Orvieto were among the most outstanding of our entire trip.
Now back to this recent trip and our lodgings. Since I had been there before I felt comfortable to book for 8 days. We were just a 10 minute bus ride from the center of Florence and actually walked “home” on more than one occasion. We also took many day trips from there to the amazing hill towns that were within a few hours of Florence.
This guesthouse (as the Sister’s call it) is called the Instituto San Giovanni Battista. It is a 15th century Villa that was given to the religious order and they maintain it by hosting tourists and by an Elementary School held on the premises. I would highly recommend it to anyone…no matter the size of your pocketbook!
Another plus was that they actually served MORE than the very hard roll and hot coffee that constituted the breakfasts at the other monasteries. We actually had a choice of coffee or tea, fruit juice, corn flakes, hard roll or croissant and many toppings, including the soft Italian Bel Paese cheese!
If you are lucky enough to plan a visit to Florence and want to be assured of a safe and affordable place to stay…just contact the sister (Suore) at the monastery: by fax 055/6815228-6802394. The mailing address is Via Ripoli, 82, 50126, Florence, Italy.