Right in the historic centre, on one of the narrow, cobbled medieval streets that runs parallel with the Arno between the Ponte Vecchio and Ponte Santa Trinità. It’s a great location for both sightseeing and shopping and there are plenty of restaurants and bars in easy walking distance.
The bedrooms come in all shapes and sizes and are decorated with a light touch, featuring sponge-painted walls in pastel shades, white embroidered curtains, wrought iron four poster beds and traditional Florentine painted furniture. While spacious, nicely decorated and a bargain, the first floor rooms are a bit dark; if you want more light, go for something higher up. I like rooms one and three with their tall, double windows and period features, but my favourite is 15 - a romantic little den with its own roof garden. You’ll have to book months in advance if you want a look in.
Breakfast is served in a sunny glassed-in loggia and there’s a large, comfortable salon with original wooden coffered ceiling and a small bar counter. The most impressive public space, however, is the terrace that sits on top of the tallest privately-owned tower in Florence; order a drink and take in the 360° views.
Eating and drinking
Standard Italian breakfast with good, fresh pastries. Sunset cocktails are served at the top of the tower.
The Italian/German husband and wife team who run this place and their staff are always ready with helpful advice for guests.
Who stays there
With its vaguely hip, retro atmosphere and good prices, Torre Guelfa is particularly popular with the fashion crowd who come for the bi-annual Pitti Uomo menswear trade fairs. The rest are a mix of mostly northern European and American tourists.
First floor rooms are the cheapest but not necessarily the smallest. Discounts are available for advance bookings.
- Culture vultures
- Families with teenagers
- Great views / scenery
Pros & Cons
- The tower-top terrace
- First floor rooms are a bit dark