Tag Archives: Florence

Spiritual Guards by Jan Fabre


The works of Jan Fabre will be on display in Florence until October 2, 2016. The exhibition is promoted by the Comune di Firenze and is taking place in three impressive locations throughout the city.

Jan Fabre is described as one of the most innovative and important figures on the international contemporary art scene, who uses his art to depict and embody the power of imagination.

This is the first time that a living artist will have his art exhibited in three venues of outstanding and historical importance at the same time.

Around 100 of his works will be on display including bronze and wax sculptures, works made of the iridescent cases of the scarab beetle and performance films ripe with humanity and universalism.

Two new works specifically created for the occasion will join the open-air museum of Piazza della Signoria that will temporarily host the monumental work ‘Searching for Utopia’ and the smaller ‘The man who measures the clouds’ that proudly stands between copies of Michelangelo’s David and Donatello’s Judith outside the Palazzo Vecchio.

The second location is the Palazzo Vecchio featuring a series of sculptures that will interact with the frescoes and artifacts tat are housed in the Quartiere di Eleonora, Sala dell’Udienza and Sala dei Gigli, rooms that are open to the public.

The third location is the Forte Belvedere which is the thematic heart of the Spiritual Guards exhibition, showcasing roughly 60 works of art.

The Fortress was built to defend Florence from external attack, but also to protect the Medici family in troubling times and was, therefore, a stronghold for both external and internal defense, highlighting the need for protection and vulnerability. Seven bronze scarabs are placed on the fort’s outlook posts, which represent angels of metamorphosis and guardians who symbolize the transition between earthly dimension and the afterlife with their ceaseless movement.

Continuing on the first floor of the villa, open to the public for the first time in many years are a series of was sculpture and films of the artist’s performances.  These works of art all being in the magnificent setting that is Florence.

“The exhibition’s motto and device, Spiritual Guards, should be interpreted as an encouragement to live a heroic life, be it in war or unarmed in defense of the imagination and of beauty.”


Florence Market & Gourmet Food Tour


Florence may not be the capital city or the business hub, but it is the pulsing heart of Tuscany and central Italy.

Recently being mentioned the New York Times ‘Where to go in Florence’ gives the reader insight into the revamped area of San Lorenzo sharing a list of new restaurants, caffès and gelati parlours that are stylish and geared to locals and tourists alike.

Since the opening of the new  of the top floor of the Central Market ‘Mercato Centrale’ in 2014 – the San Lorenzo neighbourhood has had a considerable make over. Gone are a lot of the market stalls making it easy to access the Mercato Centrale without too many distractions.

A great way to explore this area is to do a Florence Market & Gourmet Food Tour for a morning in the San Lorenzo area.

Prepare yourself to have all of your senses heightened and ignited on the Florence Market & Gourmet Food Tour.  Your guide will give you a detailed history into the central market where you will start off with a tour of the new first floor of the market for a coffee or cappucino and some time to browse the various shops working up an appetite.

The real Italian food market experience awaits you downstairs where the shops upstairs, local restaurants and Florentines come to buy only the freshest ingredients brought in before dawn from local producers.  Enjoy the vibrant, lively market experience with tastings of speciality products such as wild boar prosciutto, pecorino sheep cheese and fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables.

After the market tour you will visit a more refined gourmet food shop and learn about what staple produce is used for traditional Tuscan recipes.  You will have time to purchase unique gourmet gifts to take back home.  At the end of your Florence Market & Gourmet Food Tour you will be accompanied to a local trattoria where you can dine on the traditional Tuscan dishes you have encountered during the morning.

What better way to explore the traditional Italian market with a local food expert getting to know local vendors and shop owners who take pride in guaranteeing only the very best, local fresh produce.


Top UNESCO sites to visit in Italy


What is UNESCO? UNESCO stands for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization which is a branch of the United Nations designed to protect culture, science and education. One of the ways UNESCO does this is by assigning sights and destinations with special cultural, historical or physical qualities like the Venetian Lagoon, Ancient Rome and The Last Supper in Milan. The list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites is created and maintained by the members of the program of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee. The sights gain international attention for preservation and safeguarding- in other words these are sights that the UN deems to have timeless importance in international and intercultural relations.

Italy as a country has the largest number of UNESCO heritage sights in the world and coincidentally are some of the most sought out destinations for tourists from around the world. Some of the top UNESCO sites to visit in Italy include:

1. The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci

On display at the Pinacoteca in Brera (Milan) quite arguably one of the best museums in Italy, the masterpiece by Da Vinci represents the scene of The Last Supper of Jesus with his disciples. According the scene portrayed in the bible, Leonardo in this painting has depicted the dismay that occurred among the Twelve Disciples when Jesus announced that one of them would betray him. Visiting Milan and want to visit The Last Supper? This is one of the stops on our Best of Milan tour and we highly recommend you book with us. Getting tickets to the museum is like a poker game. We are pros at getting tickets and can organize your tour in Milan with an expert art guide.

2. Villa Adriana Tivoli

This is an ancient Roman villa built by emperor Hadrian in 2nd century AD and is considered to have special physical significance by UNESCO for having its architecture influenced by Greek, Roman and Ancient Egyptian elements. The villa is full of remains, fountains and botanical gardens. A must visit for ancient history buffs. From Rome, the villa can be easily reached by taxi, train or the metro underground. Let us know if you would like more information about visiting Villa Hadrian.

3. The Historical center of Florence

Historical centers in Italy in the major cities like Rome, Siena and Florence are apart of the UNESCO heritage list of sites and for good reason. All of these centers are filled with a large number of rich historical statues, monuments, museums which house centuries old masterpieces, architectures, etc. Florence has a tiny historical center but is home to a wide array of precious sights like the Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi museum (holds pieces from the world’s greatest artists like Michelangelo, Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael) and the iconic Florentine Brunelleschi Duomo. Our guided tour of Florence covers everything you ever wanted to see or know about this renaissance UNESCO heritage gem.


Top 5 Michelin starred restaurants in Tuscany Italy


The Michelin guide is a series of annual guide travel books that have been in production for over 100 years, and the guide is followed more notably for high quality restaurants and are a trusted go-to for seekers of authentic fine dining. Stars are given to only a select few fine dining restaurants to what is termed “Michelin starred restaurants.” There are several factors which the panel for the Michelin guide abide by when assigning stars to restaurants. The chefs have to have an immaculate history in culinary technique and providing the best experience possible to diners of high profile. A gain or loss of a Michelin start can either dramatically improve or crush the success of any restaurant involved. When traveling to Italy, most travelers prefer the consistency and guarantee of dining at a Michelin starred restaurant but also seek the pampering luxury involved in the experience. When choosing a Michelin starred restaurant in Italy, you are guaranteed exquisite cuisine from the country’s finest chefs and a mind-boggling selection of the country’s greatest wines ever produced in their very prestigious and safe guarded wine cellars. If you are looking where the best restaurants are for unforgettable cuisine and truly special wines, here are the top 5 Michelin starred restaurants we have tried, sent our clients to and highly recommend in Tuscany Italy:

from google


1. Osteria di Passignano (1 star)

A elegant mix of modern and traditional Tuscan cuisine. This Michellin starred restaurant has the luxury of an enchanting location that overlooks the Chianti countryside. Osteria di Passignano is ideal in Spring, Summer and early Fall so you can dine outside on their lovely terrace. Located beside a historical abbey and church to explore after your meal. On site there are late nineteenth-century cellars of the Marquises of Antinori- the most renowned wine producers of nobility in Tuscan history.

Address: Via Passignano, 33, 50028 Tavarnelle Val di Pesa (Florence) Phone:055 807 1278


2. Enoteca Pinchiorri (3 stars)

One of Florence‘s temples of gourmet dining conveniently located in the historical center, this elegant Michelin starred restaurant is most renowned for its legendary wine list ideal for all Italian wine enthusiasts traveling to Florence. The chef specializes in modern Tuscan cuisine and the regional products serve as the inspiration for Enoteca Pinchiorri’s highly skillful, imaginative and innovative cuisine.

Address: Via Ghibellina 87 I – 50122 Florence, Italy Phone 055242777  E-mail: ristorante@enotecapinchiorri.com website: http://www.enotecapinchiorri.com

from google

3. Il Palagio (1 star)

Il Palagio is a classic Tuscan Michelin starred restaurant located at The Four Seasons hotel in Florence. Il Palagio is addorned with majestic chandeliers of this high-vaulted ceiling palace-like restaurant housed in the old Palazzo della Gherardesca. The venue prides itself in high-end, attentive service, as well as deliciously eclectic cuisine created by the talented chef Vito Mollica. This chef is also a dear professional friend of Le Baccanti and our wine expert Filippo Bartolotta, so we guarantee also their fine wine selection.

Address: Borgo Pinti 99 I – 50121 Florence, Italy Phone +300552626450 E-mail firenze@fourseasons.com Website: http://www.fourseasons.com/florence

4. Ora D’Aria (1 star)

Ora d’Aria offers a modern, creative spin on Tuscan cuisine with Michelin starred status. The young Tuscan chef at this restaurant expresses his expertise acquired in some of the Tuscany’s most famous restaurants. He makes full use of Tuscany‘s local and seasonal products, delighting diners with exceptional flavors of the land. The menu is well respected for its specialties in selection of fish and game dishes. The lunch menù and tasting menù are quite affordable for every level of traveler desiring a Michelin starred dining experience in Florence, Italy.

Address: Via de’ Georgofili 11/13 r I – 50122 Florence, Italy. Phone 0552001699 E-mail prenotazioni@oradariaristorante.com Website: http://www.oradariaristorante.com


Chef Zazzeri with Le Baccanti on the road in America

5. La Pineta (1 star)

Also a Le Baccanti favorite as we have a very good rapport with the chef Luciano Zazzeri. We have travelled with Zazzeri to do Italy at Your Table events in the U.S. at very prestigious locations including The Metropolitan Museum in New York! La Pineta is located on the seafront and has an unprecedented fine reputation in seafood with a stunning view on the Livorno coast along with unforgettable wines. Perfect for those traveling to the Super Tuscan Wine region and to Livorno. If you are looking to take a Super Tuscan Wine Tour, contact us to book you in at La Pineta.

Address Via dei Cavalleggeri Nord 27 I – 57020 Marina di Bibbona Phone +390586600016 E-mail ristorantelapineta@hotmail.it NO WEBSITE

Traveling to Tuscany and looking for a unique vacation? Contact us– we can plan every detail for the highest quality Italian vacation imaginable.