VIA DE' TORNABUONI, Palazzo Strozzi

Audio File length: 2.36
English / USA Language: English / USA

Hi, I'm Debbie, your personal guide. Together with MyWoWo, I'd like to welcome you to one of the wonders of the world.

Today I'll accompany you through Via de' Tornabuoni.

Let's take a stroll along the most elegant street in Florence!

This beautiful, straight road where you can indulge yourself in luxury shopping as well as admire churches and historic buildings is dedicated to one of the great noble families of Florence's history. It runs along the western side of the ancient Roman city, from Antinori Square up to the Arno River and the Santa Trinità Bridge.

Its present appearance full of fashion, jewelry, and exclusive artisan shops is the result of a successful regularization of the 1800s. On either side you can see noble palaces from the 15th to the 17th century, and at the beginning and end two monumental churches.

Via de' Tornabuoni is a fundamental reference point in Florence's historic center, and you will often pass it getting from one monument to the next. If you want to explore it as it deserves, I suggest starting from Palazzo Antinori. On the other side of the street you'll notice the beautiful façade of the church of San Gaetano, one of the few Baroque buildings in Florence. It is a typical seventeenth-century church full of statues, bas-reliefs, stuccoes, and paintings, including a canvas by Pietro da Cortona.

The bank you see next to the church is Palazzo Corsi, with a beautiful 17th-century loggia.

The formidable, isolated building you see in the middle of the left side of the street is Palazzo Strozzi, one of the masterpieces of Renaissance civil architecture. Its construction began at the end of the 1400s and ended about fifty years later; the palace now hosts cultural institutions and is used as a venue for important exhibitions of ancient and modern art. The exterior is entirely covered with protruding, rusticated, and carved stones: a bench runs along the base, and the upper crowning is a powerful cornice. Its large, open portals on each side give you access to a beautiful inner courtyard.


FUN FACT: Palazzo Strozzi is one of the very few buildings where you can still see the original wrought iron from the end of the 15th century on its exterior; the rings were used to tie horse reins and its corners were used for torches and lanterns.

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