Villa La Vedetta, Florence $$$$
Concierge.com's insider take:
Five-star Villa La Vedetta sits proudly on a hill south of the Arno, just a stone's throw from Piazzale Michelangelo. There are stunning views from the front-facing bedrooms, especially at sunset, though only from the pool terrace does the panorama take in the full sweep of the city across to the Duomo. The 19th-century gray-painted villa houses 18 luxurious rooms and suites and a fine-dining restaurant, Onice—though on our last visit, the fabulous creative Italian food was let down by excruciatingly slow service. Inside, the grand decor is a mix of traditional and modern, with marble-laden public spaces and elaborate flower arrangements. The bedrooms are more intimate. If you want to enjoy Florence without being in the thick of the tourist hordes, Villa La Vedetta is an exclusive and very comfortable place from which to do so—the downside being the lack of restaurants, bars, and general animation in the immediate vicinity.
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