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Italy

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Via della Scala, 18, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
Hundreds of years ago, at the height of Florence’s Renaissance heyday, visitors to this cultural capital wouldn’t have stayed in the kinds of luxury hotels that now line its picturesque streets. Rather, the well-heeled would have come...
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Via Baccio Bandinelli, 98, 50142 Firenze FI, Italy
You know the daydream where you’re in a colorful vintage car zipping along cypress-lined Tuscan roads that line the Arno? Well, here it is. You turn off onto a gravel path ending at a sunny complex of restored 19th-century Italian factories...
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Southern Europe
Our last day in Chianti, Rachael & I headed out in the Fiat to explore a couple more places on our list. One of these places was I Sodi, a local, family-owned winery very close to the Bed & Breakfast where we stayed. We turned off the main road...
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Piazzale degli Uffizi, 6, 50122 Firenze FI, Italy
Ideally you'd have a whole day to appreciate the world’s foremost collection of Renaissance paintings, housed in the 16th-century headquarters of the Medici court. But for those with less time, highlights include the three great...
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Via delle Porte Sante, 34, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
Most people who visit Florence know that walking to Piazzale Michelangelo is a must. However, fewer people know that walking a little higher to the old church of San Miniato al Monte is an even better experience. Amble down the Arno River to Viale...
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Via del Monte alle Croci, 10, 50125 Firenze FI, Italy
There are around 600 wines from all over Italy (and 50 by the glass) to choose from at this wood-panelled wine bar which has a pretty terrace overlooking the old city gate of San Miniato in the buzzy San Niccolò neighbourhood. Lunchtimes are good...
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00186 Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
The Roman Forum is where ancient Rome began. The sprawling archaeological park gives us just a hint of what the Roman Empire once was—a dominant and diverse society. The Forum itself was the political, social, religious, and commercial focal...
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00120, Vatican City
When I walked into the World's largest Church, I had two feelings : I felt lucky and exhilarated. But when I started walking under the epitome of Renaissance art, I had a feeling that has no defination or boundaries.The Biblical narration of...
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Located across the Tiber River from the Centro Storico, Trastevere is a kaleidoscope of ivy-covered buildings, complicated Italian history, and bombastic nightlife. The heart of the neighborhood is Piazza Santa Maria, a large square where street...
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Via dei Chiavari, 34, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
One of Rome's best bakeries and among the city's most historic institutions, Antico Forno Roscioli is a family-run business. Depending on the time of day, you might find patriarch Marco or his son Pierluigi hard at work. There are a variety of...
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Via Guido Reni, 4/a, 00196 Roma RM, Italy
Maxxi, Rome’s first major contemporary art museum, cost 150 million and took renowned architect Zaha Hadid 10 years to complete. The result—a vast, bold space with exhibits on architecture and art—proves that modern Rome can produce masterpieces,...
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Via dei Banchi Vecchi, 14, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Quietly inhabiting the lovely Via dei Banchi Vecchi, Il Goccetto (not to be confused with the Italian pro-marijuana organization by the same name) is a secret hidden in plain sight: a cozy, wood-paneled wine bar with 18th-century ceiling...
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00184 Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
No matter how many postcards you've seen of Rome's iconic Colosseum, you just don't get it until you pass beneath its crumbling arches. Built by Emperor Vespasian in 72 C.E., the huge amphitheater held 50,000 spectators and marked its...
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50135 Settignano, Metropolitan City of Florence, Italy
The Belmond Villa San Michele knows something about history. Michelangelo designed its facade, Franciscan monks tended its gardens, and Brigitte Bardot stayed here. But, like any elegant host, it’s not brash about its pedigree. Manicured...
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Borgo Pinti, 99, 50121 Firenze FI, Italy
It should come as no surprise that, in the heart of historic Florence, a 15-minute walk from the Duomo, presides a Renaissance palazzo—the home of Florentine nobility for centuries. Decorated with ornate frescoes, gilded chandeliers, and...
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Via del Salviatino, 21, 50137 Fiesole FI, Italy
The problem with 15th-century villas would be the 15th-century plumbing. And the 15th-century water, and maybe even some of the 15th-century eating habits, depending on your taste.

Fortunately, the only thing that’s 15th-century about Il...
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Piazza della Trinità dei Monti, 6, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
Since its founding in 1893, the Hassler has been a pillar of luxury accommodation in Rome.
This five-star hotel is perched theatrically atop Trinità dei Monti, the hill at the apex of the Spanish Steps, providing dazzling vistas over...
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Piazza di Pasquino, 69, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
The newest addition to Rome’s growing number of boutique luxury accommodations opened in central Rome in March 2015 on a square just off the exuberantly Baroque Piazza Navona. The suites-only hotel is the work of hoteliers Emanuele Garosci...
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Piazza delle Coppelle, 49, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
We’d never say no to the amatriciana pasta at this recently revamped restaurant that’s close to the Pantheon but far enough from the crowds. Designer Jacques Garcia lends his French flair to the dining room (black tables, rich fabrics, oil...