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Florence Marathon

The 32nd running of the Florence Marathon, that ultimate test of the super-athlete and the everyman, takes place on November 29. The Florence version of the road-race marries a mental tour of strength and endurance with a historical tour of one of the world’s most beautiful cities.

With over 10,000 runners, Florence is the second largest race by participation (after Rome) in Italy, ensuring that participants are carried along in a small but manageable city of fellow athletes. For those who fear hills, take heart, the route through the city is as flat as they come. The finish is in the magnificent Santa Croce where you can kneel before the statue of Dante to find your inner Paradiso or Inferno, depending on how much training you did beforehand.

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    Thanksgiving Day

    Thanksgiving, the giant American holiday second only to Christmas, can seem far away while studying, traveling or living in Italy. Italian Sunday lunches can mask as gluttonous takedowns of all things-on-a-plate, but where, one might ask is the (NFL) football, the dumpster-sized turkey, the uncle you haven’t talked to since last Thanksgiving? Florence is the answer, one of the best places outside the USA to celebrate Thanksgiving, thanks to its high degree of expats, its natural relationship with food, and access to buckets of vino.

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      Certaldo, home of Boccaccio

      Certaldo is a small town in the province of Florence, located in the middle of Valdelsa. The city is divided into an upper and a lower part, tied together by a funicular railway that operates every 15 minutes. While the lower part of the town, Certaldo Basso is a modern, functional city, the upper part, Certaldo Alto is a glimpse into a perfectly preserved medieval world. The red brick walls, narrow streets, and vintage shops allure tourists to explore, to get lost into its beauty and charm.

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        Villa della Petraia

        When, in 1568 Cardinal Ferdinando de’ Medici received Villa della Petraia as a gift from his father Cosimo I, he could not be able even to imagine that it would have turned into one of the most beloved family properties. Nor that, centuries later, the first king of Italy, Vittorio Emanuele, would have strolled along its gardens together with the beautiful Rosina, his lover for more than three decades. Ferdinando, when he became Grand Duke, renovated the fourteenth-century “palagio” (palace) into a noble villa, converting the fields full of rocks (in Italian “pietre”, hence the name “Petraia”) into a thriving garden made of overlapping terraces. At the end of XVI century, the first terrace, at the same level of the villa, was called “the garden of the dwarf-fruits”. The trees were so low that even the dames could pick the fruits without any effort.

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          jedoa arca del masi

          L’Arca del Masi More time to cuddle

          L’Arca del Masi was born first as a traditional, family-run shop, bottega di mesticheria, which then sold among other items, unpackaged products for animals. At that time, Gianni Masi, the owner of L’Arca del Masi , was already responsible for the animal section of the business. In the years to come the shop expanded and in 1994 it is born as L’Arca del Masi, pet shop. Gianni’s partner in the business, Jedoa Rodrigues, being also an interior designer and organizer of indoor spaces has used that knowledge in the sector of pet and has introduced into the pet store products that are practical and will bring quality and design into the daily routine and home of those who own a pet.

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            sepolcri di santa croce -ida-botti-scifoni

            Santa Croce and its “Sepolcri”

            Seven centuries after its foundation, the Basilica of Santa Croce, a Franciscan religious monument, contains a patrimony of memories that make it unique; you may consider it as a history book made out of stone. In order to browse those pages, filled with illustrious names, the Opera of Santa Croce was trusted to Carlo Sisi, the one who coordinated a team of scholars able to recount to the public, through a cycle of conferences, about the main components of the Tuscan and Italian society in the nineteen century, using great figures from the nineteen century buried in the Basilica and its extensions.

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              Armida Nardi Games of shadows and lights

              We live, paraphrasing the title of a recently successful book, in an age of “sad passions”, depression, confusion, loss of sense, and in this age we encounter the paintings of Armida, that are filled with color, shapes that seem to escape from the canvases and expand in the environment that hosts them. Our technological rooms, sorted and furnished in a melancholic way, frantically armored, isolated in anorexic buildings, isolated in toxic neighborhoods, isolated in delusional towns, slowly animated by shapes and glimpses of light in the paintings.

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                toulouse lautrech pisa

                Toulouse Lautrec in Pisa Palazzo Blu in Pisa from October 16th, 2015 to February 14th, 2016

                “In his works you can find not only the human face of which he didn’t deliberately emphasize the unfortunate side (…) he was a restless observer but his brush didn’t lie”, this is how well-known journalist Arthur Huc describes the art of Henri de Toulouse Lautrec, protagonist of the large exhibit “Toulouse Lautrec. Shadows and lights of Montmartre”, hosted by Palazzo Blu in Pisa from October 16th, 2015 to February 14th, 2016. There are more than 180 works of art to describe the artist of Albi: the entire collection of his most famous manifest, numerous drawings, a carefully selected variety of paintings, and for the first time in Italy, one of the most complete collections of his graphic works, of first editions and numerous lithographs with original dedications from the artist.

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                  Florence Winter Park

                  Starting on October 28, and continuing all the way to March 6, the Florence Winter Park returns to Obi Hall. A perennial favorite, the 4th edition brings ice-skating, tubing, and skiing to the banks of the Arno. One can lace up their skates at the newly designed ice-skating rink which has been divided into two areas. There is a small rink specifically designed for beginners or kids, and a primary larger rink – enabling both amateurs, and ex-NHL hockey players laid up in Tuscany to share the same space. The small rink also plays host to the fantastically crazy sport of Broomball (hockey without skates), and families can also book it for birthdays or holidays, ensuring your entire kids’ party is on the verge of falling down at any moment. Also returning is the popular snow-tube track, where one can plummet down a snow-filled ramp on an inner-tube, reaching speeds fast enough to take out the kid who pushed you in the hall at school.

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                    Jonas Carpignano con Mediterranea vince il premio del pubblico americano Premio N.I.C.E. Città di Firenze 2015

                    Menzione speciale del pubblico per Io, Arlecchino di Giorgio Pasotti e Matteo Bini

                    SAN FRANCISCO. È Jonas Carpignano con Mediterranea ad aggiudicarsi il premio del pubblico americano Premio N.I.C.E. Città di Firenze 2015 nella 25^ edizione del festival del cinema italiano emergente N.I.C.E. USA 2015. Menzione speciale del pubblico a Io, Arlecchino di Giorgio Pasotti e Matteo Bini per aver contribuito ad arricchire la diffusione della cultura italiana all’estero. Grande successo di pubblico per tutti i film, proiezioni sold out con lunghe code all’ingresso del Vogue Theater prima dell’inizio degli spettacoli.
                    “Sono davvero onorato e molto felice che il film abbia riscosso così tanto il favore del pubblico”, ha dichiarato Jonas Carpignano ringraziando N.I.C.E. e San Francisco Film Society.

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                      piazza della passera

                      Piazza della Passera The Florentine little Montmartre

                      “I would like to have an ice cream, not because I am hungry, rather it is more a whim, exactly what I should avoid given that I am on a diet”

                      “Stop with this diet Marti! If I were a man, I would lose my mind for you! I’ll take you to one of my places where you can find the best ice cream in Florence”

                      So I ended up in Piazza della Passera, in that corner of the city of Santo Spirito neighbourhood. We had passed Ponte Vecchio and the more we moved away the more I had the feeling that the splendour of Florence, that purely tourist and prêt-à-porter, turned into something more intimate, into a Florentine beauty, little noisy and celebrated, we ended up in that Piazza that my friend Sofia considered one of her places.

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