Where you can enjoy Florence on a budget and spend more time on culture.
Florence prides itself on catering to the rich but also there are many small budget hotels for you budget travelers out there. Many of these are located near the main train station, Santa Maria Novella. Hotel Montreal is a budget hotel that is a 5-minute walk to the station and is located near some popular pubs for young travelers. The Joshua Tree Pub is right next door where you can find many locals and also some study abroad students every so often. In San Lorenzo, near the famous street market, is where Hotel Merlini and Pensione Canada Hotel are located. These hotels have many different types of rooms you can choose from if you are traveling alone or in a group. There are some historic hotels that have been transformed into small, quaint one-star hotels. Bavaria Hotel is on the third floor of the Palazzo Ramirez-Montalvo which is located close to Piazza della Signoria. Being this close to the Duomo you will awake to the bells each morning. Hotel Sampaoli is in a 1000 year old building with only a few minutes from the station, you can walk practically to each attraction around the city. Hotel Scoti is on Via Tornabuoni, one of the richest streets in Florence, in a 16th century palazzo. The decor will not assume you are in a budget hotel, with frescoes painting the floor to the ceiling. Even if you might not have the rooftop views of this city, you will for sure be able to see it all since you are close to it all.
10 Hotel Duilio
Hotel Duilio is located in the heart of Florence between the Arno River, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino's theater and the most famous museums. It is situated in Corso Italia, an ancient palazzo which has been recently restored. All the modern comforts are given: bathroom, air-conditioning, TV, telephone. A short walk from the must-see Ponte Vecchio and the majestic museum, The Uffizi Gallery. A centrally located hotel isn't only for tourists but also for business travelers. This is a hotel for budget travelers and people that like to travel simply. The staff is very hospitable to its guests, feel free to ask anything to make your stay more comfortable.
9 Hotel Colorado Florence
Hotel Colorado is a 1 one star hotel which is easily reachable by foot from the main train station, Santa Maria Novella. Located on Via Cavour, this is a bus transportation area where all the buses meet in nearby Piazza San Marco. You are close to many attractions like the Duomo, the David, the Baptistery and much more. There are 10 rooms which range from singles, doubles, triples and family rooms for 4 people. All have a private bathroom. There are 6 rooms with air conditioning and all of the rooms are very bright with views of the terracotta roofs. They don't have a lift so be aware they are located on the second floor.
8 Hotel Scoti
Hotel Scoti is a unique pensione in an elegant 16th century palazzo located on most fashionable street, Via Tornabuoni. 17th-century floor to ceiling frescoes in the vast living room, Hotel Scoti gives a comfortable atmosphere to its guests. The grand living room on the second floor was designed in frescoes by Tommaso Gherardini, Agostino Fortini, Luigi Lorenzi, Pietro della Nave, Giuseppe Nobili and Domenico Fabbroni with landscapes of the countryside of Poggio Gherardo and Villa Moreni. Your stay will be grand once you see the refurbished single and double rooms with private bathrooms and offering well-priced comfort for your stay in Florence. There is breakfast served and the staff will be available to assist your every concern or desire.
7 Loggia Fiorentina
Loggia Fiorentina is the best price in town for a one star hotel. It is in a great location just 50 meters from Piazza San Marco and the Accademia where you can find the famous David. All the attractions are right out your doorstep, museums, galleries churches, markets, etc. You can reach them all by foot. In 2009 the hotel was taken over by new owners who renovated it. Creating a glorious atmosphere with modern and grand antique art on colored walls which are accented with gorgeous furniture, plants and flowers. There are 16 rooms all with a telephone, air conditioning and/or ceiling fans, sinks, hairdryers, a safe and a TV. There are many rooms with bathrooms or private shower and bidet. They have recently renovated shared bathrooms as well. There is free Wi-Fi internet in the lobby and a lending library as well.
6 Hotel Sampaoli
Hotel Sampaoli is a small inn located in a 1000 year old building in the historic center of Florence. It is only a few minutes from the train station, Santa Maria Novella. Very close to all the attractions like the famous Duomo, Accademia where the David is held and also the Fortezza da Basso where a lot of festivals and exhibits take place. If you have a car, you are able to park nearby, 10 minute walk. There are 12 rooms, 8 have a bathroom, they are comfortable and quiet with a TV and DVD player. You can connect to Wi-Fi in your room with your laptop or telephone and it is free. The staff is happy to book a museum visit or recommend a restaurant nearby as well.
5 Palazzuolo Hotel Florence
Palazzuolo Hotel is located on Via Palazzuolo near the main train station, Santa Maria Novella. This hotel is a budget hotel with adequate sized rooms for a backpacker or a traveler only in for a few days. The rooms can be chosen with or without a bathroom. There are bathrooms down the hall for the ones that only want a room. There are telephones, sound proofing, heating and air conditioning in each room. There is a breakfast and TV room as well. You have access to rent a bike from Florence by Bike and also schedule tours through them.
4 Hotel Merlini
Inside the historic palazzo of Barbera is where Hotel Merlini is located. It was built in 1700 and this hotel was been there since World War II. Located in the heart of the old city close to the San Lorenzo market and Mercato Centrale. Walking distance from all the major attractions like the Duomo, Accademia and Piazza Santa Maria Novella. You are able to walk easily throughout the city when you stay at this budget hotel. From the windows of the hotel you can see great views of the city and relax on the terrace where you can find paintings made by students when it used to be an art school in 1960. There is a dining room where breakfast is served. The staff is always willing to cater to your every need.
3 Bavaria Hotel Florence
Hotel Bavaria is located just a few steps from the Duomo in the center of Florence. It is on the third floor of Palazzo Ramirez-Montalvo. The past and the warm ambiance of this hotel brings it a relaxing and grand experience in Florence. The bell of the Duomo will accompany you as you wake in Florence each morning of your stay. You are close to the long pedestrian street of Via Calzaiuoli and the famous Piazza della Signoria. The staff is willing to book museum ticket or suggest a restaurant for your night out. There are free maps at reception and you also have access to Wi-Fi within the hotel. They also accept all major credit cards.
2 Pensione Canada Hotel Florence
Pensione Canada is located in the pedestrian district of San Lorenzo. In the historic center, you are able to see great sights and visit amazing attractions. There are single, double, triple and even quadruple rooms to choose from. Each having a private or shared bathroom and are furnished with a simple touch and with great taste. They are comfortable, full of light rooms and for the art lovers the famous Giotto bell tower can be seen from some of the rooms. You can enjoy the views of the famous terracotta roofs of Florence and the ancient streets and buildings. The staff are very hospitable to assist you in any information about tours, attractions, museums, etc.
1 Hotel Montreal Florence
Hotel Montreal is located very close to the main train station, Santa Maria Novella. Along Via della Scala, it is also close to many attractions as well. This budget hotel has 20 rooms which are very comfortable and bright. They all have modern comforts and bathroom within each room. The staff is very friendly and are willing to assist your every need. The rooms have an LCD TV, Wi-Fi connection, electronic safe. There is a discounted menu at a restaurant nearby for the guests of Hotel Montreal. There is also a guest house on the third floor of the hotel. It is a comfortable stay with all the rooms very spacious and equipped with air conditioning, television and telephone. It is only reachable by stairs. A great stay for a low price.
About Katie Greenaway
Katie’s 11-year love affair with Florence began when, as a student in Chicago, she decided to study abroad. The attraction of living the Italian lifestyle and speaking its musical language came naturally: Katie’s grandmother was born in the province of Emilia-Romagna. Katie dove headfirst into her heritage though contact with native Italian family members. By 2009, she was off to Florence, and began the process of immersing herself in a new life.
Since then, Katie has stayed happily busy, capturing the culture of her enchanting new home base through words and pictures. She’s always exploring – often by bicycle - when not taking classes or working as an au pair. You’d be most likely to run into her when checking out a hot new wine bar or popping into an espresso bar for a quick boost. Every day holds new surprises for our Florence-based expert, and the challenges of living in a new country keep Katie stimulated and inspired.
Read more about Katie Greenaway here.