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Fiesole, Tuscany, Florence

Fiesole

Cities and Towns in Tuscany

Founded in the 7th century BC by the Etruscans, Fiesole was teh most important city in Northern Etruria and makes for a delightful foray for a few hours of Florence with wealth of ancient finds from the 15th and 14th centuries B.C. (Middle Bronze Age) exhibited in the Archaeological Museum bear testimony to an even more distant past.

Considerable parts of the 3rd century B.C. city walls are still largely intact, as is the large Roman theatre which was probably completed just before the middle of the 1st century A.D. Fiesole also pre-dates Florence as a seat of bishops. Its early 11th-century cathedral and 13th-century bell tower overlook the large square named after the famous Renaissance sculptor Mino da Fiesole.

The Bishop's Palace (Palazzo Vescovile) situated right opposite the cathedral dates back to the same period, but was rebuilt in the 17th century.
The nearby Seminario building was constructed at the close of the same century, as was the road which climbs up as far as the seat of the ancient Etruscan acropolis, San Francesco. It was there that Franciscan friars built a convent in the 14th century and began to put together what today is one of the most important collections of Chinese bronzes extant in Italy (Museo Missionario).

On the opposite side of the square, facing the Seminario, are the Town Hall (Palazzo Comunale) and a church (chiesa di Santa Maria Primerana). The Museo Bandini houses a valuable collection of paintings and sculptures (10th-18th centuries), while 19th century documents and works of art are preserved on the premises of the Fondazione Primo Conti.

Among the countless prestigious ancient residences belonging to the main Florence noble families which are dotted around the outskirts of the city, particular mention should be made of the Villa Medici, which was built by Michelozzo at the instigation of Cosimo the Elder in 1458.
Halfway along the road from Fiesole to Florence is the 15th century monastery of San Domenico, where Friar Beato Angelico lived and worked. The magnificent altar piece inside the church illustrates scenes from his life. The abbey named Badia Fiesolana stands just below.

 

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Dear Guiseppe and Jesse,
We just returned from our most wonderful vacation to Italy and wanted to first thank you for putting together such a wonderful trip, and second to provide some feedback for the future.

Hotels
1. Hotel Sovestro in San Gimignano was wonderful. The staff were very friendly and helpful and made the first portion of our journey very stress free. They made us feel like we were part of their family. I would recommend it to anyone and would specifically ask for it if we were to make a return visit.

2. Hotel La Baia in Monterosso was nice and it's location was very good especially for us older folks humping luggage from/to the train station.

3. Hotel Lucchesi in Florence- what can I say expect FANTASTIC. The rooftop view at sunset is well worth it. Again very friendly and helpful staff. Would recommend it to everyone.

Wine Tour
Money well spent. We had a great time overall. The driver Mario was OUTSTANDING. He had lots of local knowledge as well as about winemaking. USE HIM AGAIN!!!

The various wineries we visited on tour:
Altesino- fantastic and they were not cheap on their pouring. Great experience.
Azienda Agricola Patrizia Cencion Sloaria- Again a great tour by one of the owner's daughters. We felt like we were the only thing on their mind although there were other customers there. A great way to complete the day.

Again we had a fantastic time and are very appreciative of everything you booked for us. We wish you continued success and if our travels should bring us back to Italy, we know who to call.

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