Our Tara recently had the opportunity to explore two of our exquisite properties in September. Besides nearly perfect weather, Florence and Forte dei Marmi in Italy are two idyllic places the traveler to Italy must experience. Grand Hotel Minerva in Florence and Villa Roma Imperiale in Forte dei Marmi are infused with class, luxury, history and a family-owned charm that runs deep throughout.

Grand Hotel Minerva:


Set in the Piazza Santa Maria Novella, Grand Hotel Minerva recently underwent a total renovation bringing together classic and modern styles with a hint of mid-century modern flair. Along with the renovation, the young, vibrant and innovative chef, Tommaso Calonaci, matches the style of the hotel with his seasonal menus and delicious creations at La Buona Novella. The rooms are adorned in their own styles, from vivacious accent colors to stunning views, and comfort prevails at Grand Hotel Minerva. There isn’t a visit to Florence that is complete, however, without a cocktail on the rooftop of the hotel as the sun is setting while you take in the beauty and splendor of the city as the Duomo stands proud and tall. It is a pinch-me moment for any traveler, and a Florentine highlight of all who stay. Tara suggests booking one of Grand Hotel Minerva’s fabulous guides for an afternoon stroll to take in the architecture, history and doors of Florence while also noting which shops you need to go back to – after all, what is a trip to Florence without a little prosecco and shopping!


Villa Roma Imperiale: 



Luxurious. Quaint. Special. Comfortable. There are so many adjectives that can describe Villa Roma Imperiale and Forte dei Marmi, but these are Tara’s choices, as she was simply taken aback by the splendor and fairytale feeling of being on the coast of Tuscany in a place where relaxation prevails and worries are washed away by the Tyrrhenian Sea. Bicycles are the main mode of transportation here; delighting in the breeze of Tuscany while biking to a Michelin-starred restaurant for dinner was one of Tara’s favorite moments of Forte dei Marmi.

The pristine beach clubs, each with a lovely restaurant, complete the daily experience here, as the waters of the Tyrrhenian are clear and warm and the beach club service is impeccable. Amazing shopping abounds in town, also famous for their Wednesday and Sunday morning markets where cashmere is the most sold item. Forte dei Marmi IS the place to be in Tuscany; it can be combined with day-excursions to Cinque Terre, Florence, Pisa, Lucca and the marble quarries. PietraSanta is a short 10-minute drive to discover another fabulous culinary world outside of Forte dei Marmi. Words cannot describe the sheer elegance and class of this Tuscan beach town – it’s time that your clients discover the magic of Forte with a stay at Villa Roma Imperiale – as it is truly a home-away-from-home experience.

At Villa Roma Imperiale, the guest glides through the hotel and grounds as if it were their own, and as Tara put it, “Villa Roma Imperiale is a MUST stop for travelers to Italy. I guarantee you will fall in love”.