What is the ultimate in a Five Star Hotel?
For the Four Seasons Hotel Firenze it could be that it is the best in the world because it is built in the rennovated Palazzo della Gherardesca and its Convent, former Palace of the Medici. The beauty is unsurpassed. Or it could be the grounds: the exclusive Giardino della Gherardesca, perhaps Florence's largest private garden. The restaurants are impeccable in service and food, the guest rooms have 16 stem Murano chandeliers and perfectly pressed Italian bed linens.
For this destination, the Four Seasons Hotel Firenze excells from most global Five Star Hotels in
their service. Every member of their staff are highly trained to make each individual guest as comfortable as possible. They anticipate your needs. As an example, we were using one of the four down pillows on our bed as a pillow on the reading chair and the next day, a fifth pillow had been added to our room - it was on the reading chair.
If you request a guide for the museums, they provide one with the knowledge and insight of a PhD, but with the ability to quickly assess your level of knowledge and, without seeming condescending or elite, show you the works that most interest you while giving you the background information to appreciate what you are seeing. They know their job well from the technical details to the way they engage you in the conversation. Absolute gems.
The waitstaff seem to remember your wishes from one year to another, as do the rest of the staff. And the chef does not create special dishes if he feels the cost of the raw ingredients are too astronomical: an example is that last year he was able to buy white truffles at this time of year. When asking a waiter about unusual items that might be possible but not listed on the menu, the pasta with white truffles was suggested. When the orders were presented, there had to be at least one half of a cup of sauteed sliced white truffles in each order. It was more like sauteed white truffles with pasta garnish. Absolutely delicious...we ordered it four or five times during our stay and it was worth what we were charged and more! This year, my first question at dinner was if it was available again. The answer was startling: the chef said that the quantities were so rare that the prices were so high that he did not think the finished product was able to be offered at a reasonable price to the guests, therefore he did not buy them this year. I did not want to ask how much they cost, but it reminded me of the time Tiffany's ran the ad "Don't buy silver - it is over priced" when the silver market was manipulated and priced more than tripled in a few months.
Housekeeping is run as well as any department here. The rooms are cleaned thoroughly every day (including dusting the light bulbs in the lamps on the nightstands). After it is complete, two supervisors inspect the room. Turndown service is every evening. And if you need extra towels at 2 in the morning, they are at your door at once.
DOGS ARE WELCOME. Although it's too long of a trip to bring our dogs, we arranged an afternoon tea date in the hotel with local friends who brought their three dogs. All were welcome and we had a lovely afternoon.
Although the hotel is totally full now, there is no noise to be heard in the rooms. None of the staff appear a bit flustered. Everything is continuing as if today was any other day.
Just one request: if your children are loud in public places and restaurants, please consider another hotel. Many well behaved, well mannered children are welcome guests but the few that are not are irritating to everyone else. No amount of nannies nor parents are able to control these children who are not confortable behaving well.
Granted, the cost of a 5 Star hotel is a lot, but if you are in a position to stay in one, the Four Seasons Hotel Firenze is worth every dollar, euro, or whatever form of payment you make. That is something I cannot say about some of its competitors.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to Four Seasons Hotel Firenze. An enchanted city sanctuary in the midst of Florence, where an art-filled Renaissance palazzo and conventino frame a centuries-old private park. Relax amidst original frescoes and sculptured reliefs, graced by sunlight and airy garden vistas. Sip espresso under majestic trees, lounge by the open-air pool or bask in Italian spa secrets. Wonders of the Uffizi and Duomo are a stroll away. Tuscan hill towns beckon. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- 4 Seasons Hotel Firenze
- Florence Four Seasons