Rent, sell and manage properties in Florence and Tuscany

The best of the best
Our F.A.Q., services and fees

Search for your property
Properties on the market
Our services & fees
F.A.Q. (pdf file)

Office Use ONLY
Management & consultation
Our services & fees
F.A.Q. (pdf file)

Reserved client access
How to use our web site
More about us
Services we recommend
Our Monthly Newsletter
Relocation & acclimation
Business\Events venues
Wedding locations
Contact us
IMPORTANT INFORMATION » Our Monthly Newsletter ITA -

Palazzo Pitti

  Go Back
Rent, Sell and Manage Properties in Florence and Tuscany

Gardens. gardens, gardens is the theme for May. Head up to Piazza Michelangelo and discover the amzing range of colors the historic iris at the 56th Annual Iris Garden and later join the historic Corsini family in the garden behind their palazzo for the flowers, sculpture and artisans.

Wishing you a May filled with sunshine and flowers to all from SUZANNE, CORSO, BEI, SANDRA, LORI, ANNA PIA, ANN and MARIO.


This is truly an extravaganza of color, hard-fought horticultural competition, fresh air, and panoramic views - and it's free. Open until May 20, don't miss the Iris Garden located just off a nearly hidden corner of Piazzale Michelangelo. This is your chance to visit one of Florence's loveliest undiscovered treasures, where nearly 3,000 iris varieties, collected and nurtured over the last 50 years by the Italian Iris Society, blast into bloom each May.
The iris' link to Florence goes way back. The white iris against a red background was the city's symbol until 1250 when the Guelph party came to power. To emphasize that a political change had occurred in Florence, the Guelphs inverted the color scheme: the white iris became bright red on a white field, creating the city's coat-of-arms, still used today.
Gardeners from all over the world flock to Florence to admire stunning blooms, as the renowned Iris Garden opens its gates to the public for the 55th International Iris Competition. The closing prize-giving ceremony is held at Palazzo Vecchio. Flowers are judged on the basis of their color, shape, aroma and resistance to disease. A special prize, Fiorino D'oro, goes to the specimen which most closely resembles the iris in the coat of arms of the city itself.

Expect beautiful flowers, meticulously refined over generations by the careful hands of their keepers. Even if you're not passionate about flowers it should be a refreshing splash of early summer color overlooking the city.
56th Annual Iris Firenze
East side of Piazzale Michelangelo.
Open: May 2 - May 20; daily including Sundays; 10:00 am - 12:30 pm, 3:00 - 7:00 pm.
Info: 055 483112 Web Site: www.irisfirenze.it.
Free entrance.

This newly renovated apartment is located walking distance to the historic centre near the Porta Romana. It has a contemporary style, comfortable patio for outdoor dining, and is fully air conditioned. †It is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Florence life, but when you are ready to join in, it is just a short walk away. Available for rentals from 1 week up to 6 months


Amici Degli Uffizi Card

Established in Florence in 1993 by a group of concerned citizens, following a terrorist bombing that damaged the Uffizi Gallery and some of its precious artworks, Amici degli Uffizi (Friends of the Uffizi) embarked on the task of restoring and maintaining the artistic heritage of the Uffizi Gallery. Since 1993, the Amici degli Uffizi has supported the Uffizi Gallery in Florence by facilitating acquisitions, supporting restorations and organizing special temporary exhibitions.
For residents and visitors of Florence, Amici degli Uffizi offers its members a year-long museum card for 60 euro ($80) for individuals, 100 euro ($134) for families (2 to 4 members included in the one price), and 40 euro ($54) for students. Memberships can be purchased online or at the the Amici degli Uffizi Welcome Desk located between Entry Door Nos. 1 and 2 at the Uffizi Gallery.
The best part of having the Amici degli Uffizi card, besides free entry to more than twenty museums, (at the end of this post is a list of all of the museums included in this card)is the ability to skip the line. At the Uffizi and the Accademia visitors wait for hours unless they have the foresight and the extra 4 euro to make a reservation. With the Amici degli Uffizi card you go to the ticket office, show your card and a photo i.d., and you are given a ticket for immediate entry into the museum.
In 2010, the Amici degli Uffizi and the Polo Museale Fiorentino,launched a permanent welcome service for the association's members. "We wanted to create a welcome point for local citizens and visitors equal to those that have been available in the world's other great museums for some time," said Maria Vittoria Rimbotti, President of the Association. "This is the first time that an Italian state museum is offering such a service."
The Welcome Desk is located between entrances #1 and #2 of the Uffizi museum. Its hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Tel. +39 055 213560 and +39 055 284034)
Although the Welcome Desk will be a reference point mainly for Florentines, it is an easy place to purchase your Amici degli Uffizi museum card. Greeted by polite and helpful (attributes frequently hard to find elsewhere in Florence) staff members (who also speak English) you will be able to register and become a member or renew your membership within minutes. (Remember to bring your passport.)


Hidden off the back corner of a quiet courtyard halfway down Via de' Serragli, I Ragazzi di Sipario is an ex-social center that now houses the sunny work of 40 young adults with various mental and physical handicaps. Long on service and conviviality, the staff and cooks prepare and serve quick, delicious, inexpensive lunches daily for their lucky customers.

Meals run about 10 euros and generally include your choice between 3 daily special primi, 3 secondi, contorni, fruit or dessert, coffee, water and wine. Check it out. You will thank us.

Ristorante I Ragazzi di Sipario
Via de' Serragli, 104
Open Monday to Friday from 12:15 to 2:30 pm.

MUSEUM FOR MAY - Palazzo Strozzi: Angry Young Men: Picasso, MirÛ, DalÌ

Until July 17, Palazzo Strozzi hosts another fascinating exhibit. This time we get to explore the early years of the careers of Picasso, MirÛ and DalÌ, which played a decisive role in the beginning of modern art in Spain.

The exhibition concentrates on Picasso's pre-cubist period 1900 - 1905, whilst Juan MirÛ's works of 1915-1920 are presented along with Salvador Dali's from 1920-1925, both artists painting in the period before the discovery of surrealism. Each artist will be represented by 25 - 30 masterpieces selected to show aspects of the three artists in their earliest periods, works that are rarely shown in mainstream catalogues and exhibitions. For instance, Picasso's early work was often coloured by his strong political convictions.

Web Site: Angry Young Men: Picasso, MirÛ, DalÌ
Hours: Daily 9 am-8 pm, Thursday 9 a.m-11 p.m.
Reservations: prenotazioni@cscsigma.it

RECIPE FOR MAY - Francesca's Florentine Food: Involtini

Francesca Boni, cooking instructor at FriendInFlorence (www.friendinflorence.com), says, "Involtini means ‘little bundles'. It's a great way to flavor meat by rolling it around a variety of fillings. here is the Florentine way."

Stuffed veal escalopes
4 veal escalopes of about 120 gr (4 oz)
4 thin slices of cheese (Fontina or Asiago or Gouda)
2 artichokes
Canned plum tomatoes 400gr (14 oz)
1 small red onion
1 carrot
1 stalk celery
4 sage leaves
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Make a soffritto: it is the base for many Tuscan dishes - finely dice onion, celery and carrot and over a medium heat, brown the onion, celery and carrot in an aluminum stockpot with a 2/3 of a cup of oil. SautÈ, stirring and watching constantly until golden light brown. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper.

While the sauce is cooking, beat the escalopes of veal until thin, then place a slice of cheese on each, add a sage leaf and a quarter of the cleaned artichoke. Salt and pepper to taste, then roll up and secure with two toothpicks (or cooking twine). Brown them quickly in a pan with olive oil on high heat.

Place the stuffed veal rolls in a pan with the sauce and cook very slowly on a low heat covered for about 45 minutes, removing the lid after 20 minutes. Turn the involtini often. When cooked, remove the toothpicks (or twine), slice them into medallions and serve them covered with the sauce.

Francesca adds, "BUT if you are vegetarian, just substitute the veal with friend eggplant cut in thin round slices."

GELATERIA FOR MAY - Gelateria Alpina

At Gelateria Alpina, gelato means heritage and health. Sitting opposite the Fortezza at Viale Filipo Strozzi 12r - a short stroll from Piazza dell'Indipendenza, Virgilio Arnoldo founded Alpina in 1929 as he split off from the clan's Gelateria Veneta in Piazza Beccaria; eighty-two years on and it's still in the family, still adored by Florentines and visitors alike. The gelato is brilliant - smoky crema, superb pannacotta, intriguing pinolata, gorgeous lemon, and noci crammed with nuts. Above all, they make their own chocolates and it shows in the gelato cross-over - a cioccolato well up to city standards, a cioccolato sorbetto that sets its own benchmark and a cioccolato all'arancia to which one keeps on returning.

No matter how indulgent that sounds, gelato is a health food. Spoon it down while you read the pinned-up explanation of vitamin and fat content that will salve any diet-consciousness. Maybe have another! Closed on Christmas and New Year's Days and for a holiday in the middle of August, opening hours otherwise depend on how they feel. Days when Alpina is closed mean a hungrier edge to the Firenze air!

Gelateria Alpina
Viale Filipo Strozzi 12r
11am to 8pm
Closed Saturday

FORZA VIOLA!! FOR MAY - Florentine Calcio

P&F Sports Reporters Simon Clark & Anne Brooks bring you February's Florentine Calcio results and the upcoming schedule for May.

Newsletter May 2011: 2009-10 Calcio

Forza Viola!.........This month's results may look less than par but they mask a telling message. The manner of our defeat by Milan and our assault on arch-rivals Juventus shout out that the Viola spirit is back. We've always had the skilled and talented individuals; it was the team spirit and confidence that went walkabout. No longer. However, our award for April's best calcio goes to the young Viola who kicked the Roma team right in the capitals!

Fiorentina's Results
Primavera Coppa Roma-Fiorentina WON 3-1
Week 31: Cesena-Fiorentina DREW 2-2
Week 32: Fiorentina-Milan LOST 1-2
Week 33: Fiorentina-Juventus DREW 0-0
Week 34: Cagliari-Fiorentina WON 2-1

Primavera Cup. "Fiorentina Win Silverware!" Our youth team did it in the capital, seeing off the Roma youngsters with a superb display. All square after the first leg, we went for it; just short of the half-hour, a Carraro cross found Sefaerovic and we led 1-0. Minutes into the second half, we even helped score the goal that gave Roma hope as a shot deflected agonisingly from the hapless Camporese past his own keeper. No worries. Piccini gave notice that he intended to do it himself and, after a couple of near things, fired us ahead on the hour. Carraro grabbed a third at the death and the celebrations were entirely violet!

Serie A. We could toss a stone over the Apennines to Cesena. Maybe we'll lob a hand grenade as they rescued a point with the most excruciating of lucky goals. They fought hard and long, as befitted a team staring at relegation but not yet dead, taking the lead after 18 minutes with a free kick that left Boruc completely unsighted. We were good at both ends - Boruc keeping them out and Natali rattling the bar before we saw the return of the popular "Vargas cross/Gilardino goal" combination as Gila bamboozled and nut-megged their goalkeeper. Half-time balance. Into the second half and poor Natali saw another header rebounding from the woodwork. Then what we hoped was the coup-de-gras - a Santana assist and Montolivo rifled the ball unstoppably. It looked fine but on 87 minutes a Cesena shot that Boruc was about to save bounced of Gamberini and into our net; to add insult to injury, we needed a fine Boruc save to hang onto the point!

Here come the Rossoneri. Milan. Cocky, Berlusconi-bankrolled millionaires. Normally, we lose this fixture 0-2, folding weakly as the second goal goes in - so losing narrowly 1-2 and having the will to give Milan a late battering is an improvement. A good crowd. Milan are fast into their stride; 8 minutes on the clock and world-class players set Seedorf up for the opener; nothing Boruc could do. Things even out but Boruc keeps us in the game for the first half until, just before the break, they rip our defence apart and leave Boruc helpless again. Important team-talk by Sinisa; he makes changes. For the second half, we give as good as we get. On 80 minutes a Montolivo screamer is beaten out only to fall for the Vargas howitzer; we are back in with a chance. Despite our pressure and with Milan down to ten men as Ibrahimovic is sent off, we can't quite manage an equaliser. Close but no cigar!

And then the loathed Juventus - how we love to hate them! We won 0-0. Don't take our words for it. This is how the football-italia website styled it - "Fiorentina attacked for 90 minutes but could not find a way through the organised Juventus defence". Some might say that with all that pressure, we really should have scored but when you are faced with probably the best goalkeeper in the world and a well-run defence in front of him and it's a sunny day.........well, normal conditions do not apply. What is clear is that our defence is looking steady and that, from somewhere, we have rapidly built great strength in mid-field.

Week 34 takes us south to Cagliari and Alessio Cerci is the man of the moment. He's had his critics questioning Mihajlovic's faith in him but, today, he is constantly in the right place at the right time to do the right thing for us. We have the best of a workmanlike first half and, just on the break, Cerci gathers on the edge of their penalty area, spins and strikes into the far corner with a speed that recalls Gilardino in his pomp. Immediately on the restart, Cagliari are level as the ball rockets into our net from 20 metres. Boruc had no chance of reaching it but - maybe nervous at Frey sitting on the bench - wasn't perfectly positioned. It doesn't matter. We are ahead again in 4 minutes as sustained pressure leaves Cerci to slam in a second. For the rest, Boruc has got his positioning sorted and we run the roost, Cerci almost getting a tripletta. Another away win moves us above Cagliari into 9th position. Let's just remember that the squad have hauled us there from the bottom place earlier in the season!

It's a tough run-in. Udinese are vying for Europe and beat us earlier this season; ditto for Inter although they are stuttering again and were slaughtered by Schalke in the Champions League. Bologna is a team we ought to beat because we are supposed to be better than they are...........and Brescia? Well, by then it may all be over in Serie A for Brescia. We are playing for pride and the expectation of better things next season.....................AlÈ Viola!

Ticket information - seating plan, prices, and ticket outlets - is on the "biglietteria" section of the club's website [www.it.violachannel.tv ]. Tickets can be purchased at official box offices and holders of TicketOne lottery franchises. Sources include:

CHIOSCO DEGLI SPORTIVI, via degli Anselmi (between Piazza Repubblica and the Odeon cinema). Tel 055 292363.
BAR MARISA, viale Manfredo Fanti 41. Tel 055 572723.
BAR STADIO, viale Manfredo Fanti 3r. Tel 055 576169.
ACF OFFICIAL TICKET-OFFICE, via Dupre 28 (corner of via Settesanti).
NUOVO BOX OFFICE, via Luigi Alamanni 39 (close to SMN station). Tel 055 264321
FELTRINELLI FIRENZE, Via de' Carreiani 39/32R

Here come the last four games of this season:

Upcoming Fixtures
Week 35: 01 May/home Fiorentina-Udinese
Week 36: 08 May/away Inter-Fiorentina
Week 37: 15 May/home Fiorentina-Bologna
Week 38: 22 May/away Brescia-Fiorentina

BEST BOOK FOR MAY - Young Michelangelo: The Path to the Sistine: A Biography

Art historian John T. Spike, author of 15 other books and Florence resident."weaves together the personal and professional relationships that shaped the first 30 years of Michelangelo's career, from his early days in the Medicis' sculpture garden to the commissions that culminated in his work in the Sistine Chapel. Spike's Michelangelo is driven relentlessly by ambition, an obligation to provide for his dysfunctional family, and a firm conviction of his own genius. Although he lacked the social graces of contemporaries Leonardo and Raphael, Michelangelo attracted the patronage of the most important political figures of the time.

"Michelangelo was probably one of the very few who could flee Rome in the middle of completing the pope's tomb, repeatedly refuse orders to return, and still receive an even more important commission for a bronze sculpture. Spike crystallizes historical detail into vivid, memorable imagery. One scene stands out in particular: Michelangelo's six-ton David being slowly dragged through the streets of Florence to its place in front of the Palazzo della Signoria.

"Alternating between accounts of the turbulent political atmosphere and details of Michelangelo's most private moments in the sculpture studio, Spike creates a rich narrative that promises more intrigue than the best adventure novel." (From Publisher's Weekly)


May 1 at 3pm come enjoy the XVII Trofeo Marzoco - a parade of flag bearers, followed by a great show and competition in Piazza Signoria, between Italy's best "sbandieratori" or flag bearing teams.
The "Sbandieratori del Corteo Storico della Repubblica Fiorentina" are hosting this trophy challenge, and are integrally connected to the history of Florence. They carry flags which once represented the principal ministries and legal offices of the powerful 16th century Florentine Republic. Their competitions involve originality and stunning performances.
The origin of flag waving is found in the job of the flag-bearer in ancient militaries. These flag-waving forbearers were highly athletic, following a regimen of maneuvers and throws in perfect harmony with each other. From these strictly military displays, flag waving came to be performed at important celebrations where the intense routines with colorful flags would give a taste of the spectacular to a feast. The flag-bearer must have fluid and elastic movements while performing a variety of twirls and throws with style and elegance. Some of the names given to these movements include: "Velata", "Molinello", "il Salto del Fiocco", "Scambio diritto ed incrociato", "il Rovescio", "Passaggio sottogamba ed intorno al collo ed alla vita", "Onda": these are traditional base configurations which you see reoccurring throughout all flag waving performances.
Piazza Signoria, May 1 at 3:00 pm.


The XVII edition of the craftsmen fair ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO will be held the 13th - 14th - 15th of May in the Garden of Palazzo Corsini of Florence, This is a fabulous and educational three-day exhibition and shopping opportunity where approximately 80 master craftsmen recreate their workshops in the beautiful historic formal Italian garden and orangeries surrounded by hundreds of lemon trees in terracotta pots and marble statues. In these "botteghe" the craftsmen will work and show their skill and secrets explaining ancient and preserved techniques of making bronze, wood, glass, iron, paper, marble objects. This exhibition has been organized since 1995 by Neri Torrigiani and backed by the Princess Giorgiana Corsini with the purpose of promoting the ancient work of the artisans and to show as many guilds as possible from gold leafing to jewel making, from printing to pottery, from scents to hat making, from restoration of marble inlaid furniture to glass making.

Free guided tours of the historic garden (1625) are run bythe Cultural Association Citt Nascosta. On the last day, May 15, the "Perseo Prize" will be given to the most appreciated craftsmen chosen by the visitors.

A traditional restaurant will offer home-made and family cuisine, as well as drinks, teas and delicious snacks of Tuscan flavor.

Giardino Corsini
Via della Scala, 115

Friday 13th, Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th
From 10 a.m. to 8,30 p.m.
Entrance fee 8,00 euro (The catalogue of the exhibition is included with the entrance price.)



Until May 8, check out the Fortezza da Basso for an array for the best artistic handicraft work that Italy and the world have to offer. The International Arts and Crafts exhibition, known to the locals as the Mostra internazionale dell'artiginato, has reached its 75th edition and it is not by chance that ART was born and developed in Florence. Artistic handicraft is an important richness of this culture and economy, one of the sectors which made the ingeniousness of "Made in Italy" products known and well-regarded all over the world. Artisans from around the globe will bring clothing, furnishings, silver, gold, giftware, health and beauty products, food and wine. The Fair this year, will be characterized by a vision toward the future, aiming at new shapes, new materials, and new colors, without forgetting the traditions of the past. Fortezza da Basso, Viale Strozzi 1. Open daily from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm (last day until 8:00 pm.). Ticket € 5.00.


Until May 2, in the fairytale setting of Florence's Giardino dell'Orticultura, not far from Piazza della Libert, it is possible to browse amongst flowers of every color, shape and size. Smell them, touch them, and most of all, take some home. From primroses, to cactus to bonsai, nearly 50 different produces and growers come together to present their colorful wares. It is a great excuse to visit one of Florence's best "hidden" secrets.

The Giardino dell'Orticultura has entrances at Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 4 and off the Via Bolognese. Open daily 8 am - 7:30 pm. Free admission.


On May 27 and 28, there will be a meeting of the Dragon Boat Pink Ladies. Where? In the middle of the Arno River.
If you happen to be near the River Arno and hear the rhythmic pounding of a drum, the chances are the Florence Dragon Ladies are out on the water. Their ages range from 45 to 77, but these ladies have one thing in common: they are all survivors of breast cancer. Having won the race of their lives, they are now channeling their energy and determination into this strenuous sport, and spreading the message that even after breast cancer, life can be active, fulfilling and fun.
Florence Dragon Ladies was launched in February 2006 by the Florentine section of the Lega Italiana per la Lotta contro i Tumori in conjunction with the city rowing club, the Societ Canottieri Comunali. Since then, the team has been training twice a week with coach Alessandro Piccardi and has taken part in numerous races and events.
Dragon boat racing is one of the fastest-growingwater sports in the world. The boat itself, which takes its name from the dragon head and tail decorations on the original Chinese crafts, is an open craft powered by up to 20 long-handled paddles and a steering paddle at the stern. The pace is dictated by the beat of a drum fitted in the bows.

Check out their web site at: http://www.florencedragonlady.it/english.htm


From May 3 to May 28 Florence once again turns its focus on intercultural contemporary exchange through a series of events and projects involving artists from Europe, Asia and around the world. This is an investigation into the intercultural dialogue made possible by art, and specifically the relations between Europe and the East that have been complex and fluctuating; sometimes intense and enthusiastic, other times difficult. The XVIII edition of Fabbrica Europa will focus on "Worlds of Culture", opening a new inquiry featuring a view of the many and different "islands" that make up the cultural and artistic wealth of the European continent.
On stages represented by music, dance, theatrical events, installations, workshops and meetings between artists and professionals from more than 20 countries, Fabbrica Europa seeks common roots, encounters and clashes, exchanges and migrations. The events will take place at a variety of venues, including Stazione Leopolda, Viale Fratelli Rosselli 5, Porta al Prato. Open 7:00 pm to 1:00 am. Admission ranges from 10-25 euro. Visit http://www.fabbricaeuropa.net for the latest info on scheduling and locales.


No they are not bored or tired at YAWNFlorence. YAWN = Young Anglo Women's Network. It is a social networking group of English speaking young women who get together about once a month for apperitivo. It's a great way for students studying in Florence and newly arrived expats to meet people.
Are you on Facebook? You can look up "Yawn Florence" as a friend, add it and get updates. Or you can email yawn.florence@gmail.com and be added to the mailing list.

The YAWN gang has a great time and it's a particularly good way for single young women in Florence to hit the ground running with like-minded friends.


On May 14 around 2pm, listen for the roar of powerful motors and the applause of the crowd as Florence hosts a leg of the fabulous Mille Miglia vintage car rally. Towns like Pienza, Montalcino, Castellina, Panzano, Greve, Impruneta, Florence, Vaglia and Barberino will become a moving car museum. Eighty years after its inception, the Mille Miglia epitomizes the passion people hold for cars in the pursuit of adventure, excitement and discovery. It is also the easiest and most fun vintage car show ever attended. You can sit in one spot and enjoy the noisy, colorful show going by.
Nearly 400 automobiles are registered this year, including Alfa Romeos, BMWs, Aston Martins, Maseratis, Jags, Ferraris and more; each beauty from 30 to 80 years old. On Saturday, watch for the classic Freccia Rossa sign (a red arrow with 1000 Miglia written on it) marking the route, and find yourself a good observation spot.
Coming up from Rome, the rally should hit Buonconvento starting around 11:30, the cars are expected in Piazza del Duomo of Siena at 1:00, then on to Castellina-in-Chianti, hitting Panzano around 1:30, and arriving around 2:30 in Florence, then on to Vaglia and Barberino di Mugello.
The ruote into Florence will travel along Via San Felice a Ema, Viale del Poggio Imperiale, Viale Torricelli, Piazzale Galileo and Viale Macchiavelli. The cars will enter the historical centre at Porta Romana, then travel down Via Romana, Via Maggio, Ponte a Santa Trinit, Lungarno degli Acciaioli, Via Por Santa Maria, Via Vacchereccia, Piazza della Signoria, Via dei Leoni, Via de' Castellani, Lungarno Diaz, Lungarno delle Grazie, Lungarno della Zecca Vecchia, V.le A Gramsci, and V.le Matteotti to Piazza Libert.
It was Enzo Ferrari who defined it "the world's greatest road race". From the starting line in Brescia, to the much-awaited appointment with Rome, and finishing with arrival back in Brescia, the Mille Miglia rally meets the enthusiasm of the cities it passes through and the fervor of the crowds lining the streets.


From May 25 to 29 Florence will be the world's Gelato Capital, as the city is transformed into an open-air "maxi gelateria". Stroll through Piazza S.S. Annunziata and over to Piazza della Repubblica accompanied by tastes of the best frozen wares that Italy's gelatai have to offer. Entry is (obviously) free, and a tasting card can be purchased for 10 euros (ten tastes).
Confronting the gelato question from every side, both artisan and industrial treats will be presented. And given that the average Italian family apparently spends 82 euros a year on gelato, given that gelato is a part of Florence's history; invented they say by the architect Buontalenti for the court of Cosimo il Primo, and most of all... given that it is widely known to be "un alimento perfetto, perfetto per tutte le diete", we say Bring it On!
Since conferences will be held in Palazzo Vecchio, a Gelato Village and Gelato University will inhabit Piazza S.S. Annunziata, and both Piazza Strozzi and Piazza della Repubblica will be involved, it might actually be difficult to miss the fun. Each day except Monday (when things will wind down around 3:00 pm) watch for Gelato events, clowns and street bands from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm throughout the center.
Special dinners, events, workshops and classes can be booked through the official website.
Website: http://www.firenzegelatofestival.it/site/home.asp.


The new 72-hour (3-day) museum pass - Firenze Card - just went on sale (50 euro) during the last week of March. On the excellent web site that supports the card, it explains:
"Firenze Card is a 72 hours card that gives you admission to 33 of the most important museums in Florence. You will have access not only to permanent collections, but also to exhibitions and all other activities held in that museum without further costs. You have just to show your card at the entrance to the museum's personnel, who will record your entry and let you in. The card can be used just once in each museum, and it will provide free access also to a EU citizen under-eighteensaccompanying you To use your card for public transport, just swipe it against the validation machines located on every bus or tram."
See the Firenze Card web site for more information in both Italian and English: firenzecard.it


Flo, the new "concept store" designed by Sergio Colantoni, which recently opened at Lungarno Corsini 32r. Presenting clothing and jewelry created in cooperatives and by emerging artisans, it is both glamorous and modern. You can find clothes, accessories and furniture. Look for necklaces made from vintage ties and shopping bags that were once shirts. Find jewelry and bags made of recycled materials produced in Ethiopia at a development project for local leather artisans. In short, it is a place of "fashion", but with a soul.

LECTURES IN ENGLISH - British Institute of Florence

Every Wednesday at 6:00 pm, the Sala Ferragamo in the Institute's Harold Acton Library hosts a free lecture, concert or other event, followed by an informal reception. The British Institute Library, Lungarno Guicciardini 9.

Wednesday, May 4, 6pm
Katie Campbell -- Paradise of Exiles: the Anglo-American Gardens
of Florence
Combining social history with horticulture, author and landscape
historian Katie Campbell explores the eccentric English and American
expatriates who gathered in Florence at the end of the nineteenth century.

Wednesday, May 11, 6pm
Lauren Jennings - Dolce suono": manuscripts of song and poetry
from late-medieval Florence
This talk revisits the world of secular song in late-14th- and early-15th-century Florence by considering the very books in which the repertoire circulated. Lauren Jennings is a PhD candidate in Historical Musicology at the University of Pennsylvania, and is currently Director of Music at St Mark's English Church, Florence.

Wednesday, May 18, 6pm
Jane Fortune - Invisible Women: Forgotten Artists of Florence
Jane Fortune, author, art collector and founder of two non-profit associations aimed at the recuperation and rediscovery of art by women in the Florentine museums, discusses the women artists whose talent and courage represent a fundamental part of the city's artistic identity.

Wednesday, May 25, 6pm
Lecture: Carlo Arborio Mella and Eleonora Negri - Monteverdi's "L'incoronazione di Poppea" at the
Maggio Musicale
Claudio Monteverdi's magnificent opera on the coronation of Nero's
wife Poppaea, with a libretto by Giovanni Francesco Businello based
on Tacitus and Suetonius, was first performed in Venice in 1643.
This June a new production, directed by Alan Curtis and with
costumes and scenery by Pier Luigi Pizzi, opens at the Teatro della
Pergola as part of the 74th Festival del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.
Carlo Arborio Mella, in charge of external relations at the Teatro del
Maggio, and the musicologist and pianist Eleonora Negri set the
scene with the help of audio and video recordings.


The Talking Movies Series at the British Institute Library. Every Wednesday at 8:00 pm, the Sala Ferragamo in the Institute's Harold Acton Library hosts a film, followed by discussion. The British Institute Library, Lungarno Guicciardini 9.

For May, Talking Movies will show the films of Nicholas Roeg. In approximate chronological order: Performance (1970) co-directed with Donald Cammell with a psychedelic Mick Jagger infiltrating the London criminal underworld. The great Australian outback adventure with a twist in Walkabout (1971). The tense psychological occult thriller Don't Look Now (1973) with Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie. The Man Who Fell To Earth (1976) science fiction epic with charismatic David Bowie as the alien. Bad Timing (1980) a neo-noir with Art Garfunkel paired with Roeg's wife Teresa Russell as traumatized ex-pats in Vienna.
Wednesday, May 4, 8pm
Walkabout byNicholas Roeg, 1971

Wednesday, May 11, 8pm
Don't Look Now by Nicholas Roeg, 1973

Wednesday, May 18, 8pm
The Man Who Fell to Earth by Nicholas Roeg, 1976

Wednesday, May 25, 8pm
Bad Timing by Nicholas Roeg, 1980

Original Language Series - Odeon Theatre, Piazza Strozzi 2. Phone: 055 214 068. www.cinehall.it (Note: if not at the Odeon, then at Cinema ASTRA2)

Sunday 1 ODEON
Rio by Carlos Saldanha (Usa/Can/Bra 2011, 96')
4.10 - 6.00 - 8.00 - 10.00 pm

Monday & Tuesday 2 & 3 ODEON
Rango by Gore Verbinski (Usa 2011, 107')
4.15 - 6.15 pm

Thursday 5 ODEON
World Invasion: Battle Los Angeles by Jonathan Liebesman (Usa 2011, 116')
4.10 - 6.20 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm

Saturday 7 ODEON - Europa Festival
Sound of Noise by Ola Simonsson & Johannes Stj‰rne Nilsson (Sweden 2010, 98')
9.30 pm - FREE ENTRY
with english and italian subtitles

Monday 9 ODEON - Europa Festival
Tilva Rosh by Nikola Lezaic (Serbia 2010, 99')
9.00 pm - FREE ENTRY
with english and italian subtitles

Tuesday 10 ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi
Amadeus - Director's cut by Milos Forman (Usa 1984/2002, 178')
8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY
with italian subtitles

Thursday 12 ODEON
Exit Through the Gift Shop by Banksy, sponsored by Lo schermo dell'arte Film Festival
9:00pm and 11:00pm
with italian subtitles

Thursday 12 ASTRA2
Limitless by Neil Burger (Usa 2011, 105')
5.15 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm
with italian subtitles

Monday 16 ASTRA2
Thor by Kenneth Branagh (Usa 2011, 130')
5.30 - 8.00 - 10.30 pm

Wednesday 18 to Sunday 22 ODEON
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides by Rob Marshall (Usa 2011, 141')
italian subtitles
4.00 - 6.40 - 9.30 pm
Monday 23 - only 5.30 pm
Tuesday 24 - only 5.30 pm
Wednesday 25 - only 5.30 pm

Monday 23 ODEON - Special event
Economics of Happiness by S. Gorelick, H. Norberg-Hodge, J. Page (Usa 2011, 67')
8.30 pm
with italian subtitles

Tuesday 24 ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi
The Virtual Revolution - Ep. 3: The cost of freedom by Dan Kendall (GB 2010, 60')
8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY
with italian subtitles

Thursday 26 ASTRA2
Fast 5 by Justin Lin (Usa 2011)
5.15 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm
with italian subtitles

From Friday 27 to Sunday 29 ODEON
Tree of Life by Terrence Malick (India/GB 2011, 138')
4.00 - 6.40 - 9.30 pm
Monday 30 - only 5.30 pm
Tuesday 31 - only 5.30 pm
with italian subtitles

Tuesday 31st ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi
The Virtual Revolution - Ep. 4: Homo interneticus by Molly Milton (GB 2010, 60')
8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY
with italian subtitles


10 May, 9:30pm
Stefano Bollani
Orchestra della Toscana
Stazione Leopolda (Viale Fratelli Rosselli, 5)

10 and 11 May, 8:45pm
Vinicio Capossela
Teatro Verdi (Via Ghibellina, 99)

17 and 18 May, 8:45pm
Teatro Verdi (Via Ghibellina, 99)

18 May, 9:30pm
Billy Bragg
Auditorium FLOG (Via Mercati, 24/b)

27-29 May 21:00
Gianna Nannini
Nelson Mandela Forum (Viale Paoli)

12 May, 9pm - FREE CONCERT
Choir and Orchestra Yale University and Julliard
Masaki Suzuki conducting Bach's St. Mathew Passion
Chiesa di Orsanmichele


The Maggio Musicale Fiorentino kicks off its 2011 season with Aida, conducted by Zubin Mehta and directed by Ferzan Ozpetek See the schedule for this season on line at: http://www.maggiofiorentino.com.

Ticket Office Teatro Comunale
Corso Italia 16 - Firenze - fax: +39 055 287222
Tues. - Fri. 10:00-16:30 & Sat. 10:00-13:00

Tickets on line
On the 23rd day of each May, Florence remembers Fra Savonarola with a solemn mass held in the Capella dei Priori in Palazzo Vecchio. After the ten o'clock mass, a small parade of civil and religious authorities, move out to Piazza della Signoria where a round stone plaque marks the spot where charismatic monk Savonarola and his cohorts where hung, then burned. Palm fronds and rose petals are laid on the plaque, before the group moves on to the Arno, where more flowers are tossed in memory of one of Florence's most infamous leaders.
Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria, from 10:00 am.


The Marino Marini Museum, in the heart of the historical centre of Florence, between via della Vigna Nuova and piazza Santa Maria Novella, is housed in the ancient church of S. Pancrazio, founded before 1000, deconsacrated in 1809 and used for several activities over a century. The museum was inaugurated in 1988 after the extensive restoration work directed by the architeots Bruno Sacchi and Lorenzo Papi.
The Museum contains 180 works by Marino Marini (1901-1980) given by the sculptor and his wife Marina at different times of his life. The collection includes sculptures, drawings and etchings. Pieces are arranged by subject rather than by chronological order. The aim is to use themes as modes rather than focus on iconographical subjects. The core of the exhibition is the imposing equestrian group from The Hague ( 1957-58) placed in the centre of the old liturgical space and immersed in the light of the large apse.
The new exhibits called forthcoming show the work of two artists. Maria Antonietta Mameli presents an exploration of the real, the poetic idiom of experience where personal contact is missing. Tomoaki Suzuki on the other hand, presents an involvement that includes forms of sharing and participation. this is the focus of the research and work of two artists who, in a sense, stage a scene from the theatre of life, which offers space-time experiences of places and people.
Museo Marino Marini
Piazza San Pancrazio
May 1 to June 4 - forthcomin
Monday: 10.00 am - 5.00 pm
Wed - Sat: 10.00 am - 5.00 pm
Closed on Tuesday, Sunday and on public holidays
Tickets: adults: € 4, children, seniors: € 2
Website: http://www.museomarinomarini.it/home.php


Florence's Roster Tepidarium of Horticulture is once again open. What does that mean? It's time to have tea with the Butterflies. Visitors can have a glass of prosecco or cup of tea while watching some of the world's most beautiful butterfly species as they fly freely in the 19th-century glass-walled trepidarium, the largest in Italy. Live music every night and tango on Wednesdays add to the fun. The 10 euro entrances fee gets you one drink and an aperitivo buffet.

Located in the Horticultural Garden at Vittorio Emanuele 4. Parking is available at the Parterre car park. Open Wednesday through Sunday, starting at 7pm. Reservations for groups and for private events can be made by calling 055 499334.


You can find used but carefully repaired bikes, adopted from the City Bike Deposit, at the Ulysse Officina on via Giano della Bella 22 (inside the ex-Conventino). Via Giano della Bella is located just beyond Piazza Tasso. Buses 11, 12, 36 and 37 should get you there. The Officina is open from 1:30 to 5:30, Monday to Friday.

ST. JAMES' EVENTS: The Great 50 Days of Easter

Easter is a church season lasting 50 days, ending with the Feast of Pentecost. It is a festive time of great rejoicing. In celebration of Easter, St. James Church announces the following schedule:

Thursdays in Easter

May 5 - Cookout and Conversation - 7:30 PM
May 12 - Popcorn Theology - 7:30 PM -- Movie and discussion at the rectory.
May 19 - International Dinner - 7:30 PM -- Greek Cuisine €10 (children under 12 free)
May 26 - Popcorn Theology - 7:30 PM -- Movie and discussion at the rectory.

Thrift Shop
Date: Wednesday, May 4
Time: 10:00 - 12:00
Location: Undercroft
Make sure to come for great bargains and lots of fun.

Art Exhibition and Opening
Opening & Reception - Friday, May 6, at 7:30pm
Exhibition on view May 7- 31, regular office hours.
Location: Undercroft
Don Sutphin, Local Artist
The Church will be hosting an exhibit by local artist Don Sutphin. Sutphin is an American painter and graphic artist. Originally from New England, he has worked in Florence in the Via Erta Canina for 50 years.
The Opening and Reception for the Art Exhibition will be held in the Undercroft on Friday, May 6, at 7 PM, and the Exhibition will be on view during normal office hours from May 7 through May 31. All are welcome.

Lecture: Emerging and Submerging Economies: Perspectives after "The Big One"
Date: Sunday, May 8
Time: 10:00 - 11:00 AM
Location: Meeting Room
Giampiero Gallo, Professor of Economy, University of Florence and NYU-Florence, will present the next Adult Forum, speaking on the world economic system in the wake of the economic crisis. The recent financial and economic crisis was the worst one seen since the Great Depression. There have been substantial consequences on the structures of the economies around the world. The debris left behind is still affecting our daily lives. It can be useful to outline some perspectives for growth and development for the next few years. A major element of novelty is the fact that emerging economies are reducing the gap relative to the rich economies. With an aging population and increasing public debt, there is a lot that we should be worried about.

Scott Beasley Concert -- A Musical Goodbye
Date: Sunday, May 8
Time: 19:30
Location: Church
Scott Beasley, who has been an important member of the St. James family during his stay in Florence, will be holding a farewell concert at the Church.


The Artviva Artists, Authors & Aristocrats events give you the chance to sit and relax, enjoy a glass of sparkling wine and mingle with famous locals, Counts and Princes, famed authors and world-renowned artists in the heart of historical Florence. The evening also includes a wine tasting of award-winning wines.

Each Monday in May from 5.00pm to 6.30, the evening starts with meeting a local artist or author. Then there is a wine tasting and introduction to Italy as you enjoy being taught how to taste wines. The wines tasted include high-quality, well-rated local Tuscan wines made by the presenters themselves.

Maybe you will be here to meet Australian-turned-Tuscan-local, Lisa Clifford, the author of The Promise (about to become a film!) and Death in the Mountains in which she solves a real-life 100-year-old murder mystery!

Have Italy explained by an Italian aristocrat, such as Prince Duccio Corsini, who will share insights into Italian culture before doing a tasting of his family estate award-winning wines.Perhaps you will be here to meet Count NiccolÚ Capponi, an erudite PhD scholar who explains some of his incredible knowledge on the history and culture of Italy.

The cost is 15 euro per person, or 10 euro if you mention this newsletter. To reserve your places, please contact us on staff@artviva.com or call . Spaces are limited so please call ahead. You can also call Artviva Director Rose Magers (Director) directly on 3296132730 if you would like any more information.


"Artisan wares market": Sun. 1 (morning to afternoon). Panzano-in-Chianti. The weekly town market held in Panzano is expanded with artisan booths of all sorts. You'll find honey and pecorino (sheep's milk) cheese makers, hand-embroidered linen makers, boutique wineries and antique dealers and much more. To visit Panzano by car from Florence or Siena, take Route 222, the "Chiantigiana" highway passing through the Chianti wine area. From the west, there is a road connecting with the highway at Tavarnelle or S. Donato. This pretty road passes the monastery at Badia a Passignano. It is also possible to reach Panzano by SITA bus from Florence. The trip takes about one hour.

At the Palazzo Comunale, Sala del Basolato, the exhibition focusing on Bˆcklin, de Chirico, and Nunziante takes centre stage from April 16 to June 19, 2011. These three artists are linked by the same themes, expressions, and artistic sensibilities, and the show covers a period of 130 years of the lives and work of these artists. The work of Arnold Bˆcklin not only influenced de Chirico and Nunziante, but it also had an impact on the works of other greats from the 1900s, from Edvard Munch to RenÈ Magritte, from Max Ernst to Salvador DalÌ.

At the Museo della Basilica di Santa Maria delle Grazie,the exhibition, Quiete, Invenzione e Inquietudine. Il Seicento fiorentino intorno a Giovanni da San Giovanni, runs from March 5 to June 12. Part of the events organized for the far-reaching exhibition, the 17th-century in Valdarno, this show was curated by Mara Vison and Silvia Benassai, with the help of Lorenzo Pesci. The exhibition focuses on the figure of Giovanni Mannozzi, known as Giovanni da San Giovanni, one of the most original artists in the 1600s in Florence.

The Etruscans come home: From the Louvre to Cortona (Gli Etruschi tornano a casa Dal Louvre a Cortona)
Running from March 5 to July 3, 2011, at Cotona's Etruscan Museum, this far-reaching exhibition is dedicated to the ancient peoples that once inhabited Tuscany: the Etruscans. The exhibition showcases over 40 artifacts from the Paris' Louvre, which have never been seen in Italy before. The success of the exhibition, Masterworks of the Etruscans from the Ermitage, gave rise to a large European database of the Etruscan heritage in continental museums. Following in these lines is the project in Cortona, called Cortona and the Great European Museums, which brought the artifacts from the Louvre to Cortona. The show displays over 40 Etruscan artifacts, never before displayed in Italy, that were found in Fiesole, Arezzo, Chiusi, Perugia, Orvieto, and Civita Castellana.

From the warm Spring nights until the brilliant nights of August: the 2011 the astronomic nights of Villa Demidoff at Pratolino have resumed. Appointment with free entrance to learn the galaxy of our hemisphere and to treat oneself to a magical moment observing Orion and the North Star.

All the meetings, organized in collaboration with the Osservatorio Astronomico Torre Luciana, will open at 9pm with introduction by the astronomer and astrophysicist Lorenzo Brandi. Then you will pass on to the observation of the sky of the month with both naked eye and telescope. The nights will be held even in case of clouds or overcast, unless there is heavy rain. The entrance is free on booking, but reserved to people over 15 years of age. Check the websites for the scheduled events.

For reservations, call: 055 2760829 (office open Mon., Wed. & Fri. 10am - 1pm
Website: http://www.firenzelowcost.it/en/?p=5329


A proverb says "Spring has come when you can put your foot on three daisies. This May we wish that you will climb through hills of puple irises and skip through fields of red poppies. Spring has finally arrived in Tuscany!

All the best,

Pitcher and Flaccomio