Florence is the capital of Italian Art, and the Renaissance city. Montecatini is the glamourous little city where the international jet set used to relax when coming to Tuscany before visiting Siena or Lucca. And here’s what I noticed on my travel diary about these wonderful locations.
Florence is changing. Lots of Japanese tourists are taking over the Renaissant city of Leonardo and Michelangelo. The Italians seem to disappear gradually. Art dealers, politicians, brokers, love to meet at Palazzo Vecchio for international conferences or Biennale to set up new economic partnerships.
French tourists love to stop at palazzo Pitti to visit a good exhibition or walking in Boboli Gardens. Asian art galleries and european antiques mix on less crowded streets, and you don’t mind having lunch at a chinese restaurant and tasting an ice-cream at Lindt shop.
You can feel the city still enchants its visitors, though the World moves so fast. Two stories caught my attention. The historic library Edison risks closure because of economic interests. A pity, unfourtunately quite common in Italy. An interesting and unexpected site was Oblate’s public library, where under white arcades students can meet, study, relax, attend conferences while the Battistero and the Duomo stand close, dominated by a lovely terrace.
No surprise for Florence, but I wasn’t prepared for the beautiful Montecatini Terme. Art Nouveau everywhere, magnificent Terme, it used to be the favourite location for musicians, actors, princes, writers and connaisseurs to relax while having a walk and tasting a CIALDA. The amazing steinglasses, the curative water and the friendship people made the city very confortable.
A trip that I recommend with a good concert and a glass of Chianti if you like wine, in Dante’s land.