photo credits © ThingLink
The Santa Maria Novella Church is the very first basilica in Florence and dates back to the mid-13th century. It is Florence’s main Dominican church and contains many of Florence’s artistic masterpieces and funerary chapels of prominent Florentine families who funded many of the frescoes within the church. Giorgio Vasari was the architect who designed the first remodeling of the basilica in 1567 which was commissioned by Cosimo I de’ Medici, the first Grand Duke of Tuscany.
Throughout the year there are markets held within the piazza such as the Chocolate Fair and recent renovations have been made to the center of the square with the installation of new benches and patches of roses creating a nice place to hang-out. The piazza’s restaurants are also great places to go and enjoy dinner or lunch.
Located conveniently across the street from the piazza is the Santa Maria Novella Train Station. It’s inauguration was in 1848 and only went to Pistoia and Pisa. Today the railway commutes to the main cities in Italy and is one of the busiest stations in the country with almost 60 million people traveling to and from Florence per year.
Apartments Florence has a quick downloadable guide of their Florence Top Tips of what to do and where to go around the Santa Maria Novella neighborhood.
We chose Top Tip #3 from Apartments Florence downloadable guide: SHOPPING
Aside from the wide choice of brands in the luxury shopping district – the area surrounding Via Tornabuoni – we highly recommend a couple of off-the-map spots: Parsifal, artisan jewelry in Via del Sole, and Babele, art gallery and bookshop on Via delle Belle Donne.
For more tips on where to go and what to do around the Santa Maria Novella neighborhood, download Apartments Florence’s 5 Top Tips!
Intro by Tessa Cole – photos by Apartments Florence