The Savoy, directly on the Piazza Della Repubblica, has without a doubt one of the best locations in Florence. Built on the original site of the historic church of San Tommasso, the Savoy was constructed in 1893. Relaunched in early 2000 under the ownership of Rocco Forte, the new Savoy is so utterly in sync with the city in both style and quality that, in has become the place to meet.
Designed by Olga Polizzi, the rooms at the Savoy mix classic architecture, monumental views, and high ceilings with a pared down, contemporary style that somehow accentuates the city's history. The contrast between historical location and the modernity of the guest rooms in particularly engaging.
Florence, more than anywhere else in Italy, has a reputation and history of producing exquisite handcraft, Jewellery, paper making, linen embroidery, leatherwork, wrought iron, ceramics, furniture, stone mosaic, silk damask, perfume, decorative carving, woven brocades, tassels, terracotta pots - name a craft and Florence probably, at one time or other, been the best at it. Chances are it still is. Even today this remains a city jam-packed with artisans, and the competition between them keeps standards high. Florence is characterised by a juggling act between a tradition of fine quality and a love of innovation, and it is this balance that the Savoy has managed to get so right. The design of L'Incontro restaurant invokes the city's artisan traditions in a convincingly contemporary manner; the food tends to be reassuringly Tuscan.