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INTO passion | June 5, 2020

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Ripostena – Toskania

Florence at sunset

The orange-yellow-red sky over the Arno River sharpens the warm hues seen throughout the city. The houses on the Ponte Vecchio are even more beautiful and the Florentine roofs and, of course, the dazzling cathedral dome are also stunning.

With Florence I have a similar problem as with San Gimignano – on the one hand impresses me and on the other hand the crowd of tourists overwhelms. But one thing is certain – a walk in Florence just before sunset, when tourists seem to be getting tired of the whole day of sightseeing and then having a cocktail in one of the rooftop bars from which we admire the city is a real pleasure.

We leave the car in the parking by the river – access to the center of Florence despite rush hours is very smooth. We walk down the street parallel to this along the river – on both sides we pass the shops, bars and restaurants. In the popular cafe girls are sitting on the window. After a while I see a row of stunning sculptures – open air gallery right in front of the Uffizi Gallery, where we can find collections of Italian and Flemish art (Michal Angel, Carravagio, Rubens). After a while we head out to the street, which leads from the Ponte Vecchio Bridge to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. For me this is the most beautiful of the cathedrals – greenish-graphite marble contrasts with bright stripes, all in the southern sunshine with a thousand colors. Also the dome is visible from many corners of the city. We are slowly visiting a gothic temple, whose construction began in the 13th century. Later we head for the Ponte Vecchio Ponte Vecchio, which was built in 1345 and retained its original appearance. The most beautiful are the yellow cabins on the bridge which are visible when walking along the river. Unfortunately the bridge is full of tourists, but even then cannot be missed.

Fashion lovers should go to the Museum Gucci at the Palazzo dela Signoria and to the Salvador Ferragamo shoes museum, I visited both on my previous visit – this time we are walking away from the Ponte Veccio to watch the sunset. The place we have found is perfect – it is located on the top floor of the 5 star Excelcior Westin Hotel Florence. We can choose from a bar or a restaurant – we decided for a drink and we wait on a plush sofa until the table is released. Although there are some guests ahead, the queue is moving quickly and after a while seating on a soft sofa we admire the roofs of the Florentine houses and the sunset over the river. It is magical, although the price of the drink is not lower than the quality of the view – drinks start at 15 Euros, while for the first cocktail we have to pay 21 Euros, and in return we get access to the snack bar – variety of a high quality aperitivo. Time passes very slowly on this amazing rooftop. Visitors, in most cases tourists, and not residents of a 5-star hotel, by his tourist clothing, survived all day in the heat makes this place less sophisticated. Everything blends here like in Florence itself: sophistication and everyday life, elegance and mediocrity. It’s like this tired tourist with McDonald’s sandwich at the Neptune’s fountain.