Latest Autumn Fashion from Italy: dressing like an onion?

When the seasons start to change, the Italians have  a lovely way to express how you should dress: ‘come una cipolla’ – like an onion. The saying perfectly captures the idea of layering so that when the mornings are lovely and crisp, you are nice and warm, and when the sun warms things up a […]

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Tuscan Wine at the ‘VINO AL VINO’ Festival in Panzano

The Tuscan countryside flashes post-card perfect before us as we curve along the winding Tuscan countryside roads on our way from Florence to the surrounding Tuscan countryside. The cypress-pierced Tuscan landscape arches up as if wanting to lift the trees even closer to the perfect blue Tuscan sky. Quaint farmhouses watch out over their metered […]

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Risotto – how nice is rice?! (Includes great Tessa Kiros risotto recipe!)

With all the amazing fresh produce available in the  local produce markets in Florence and Tuscany in general, organising a dinner for friends is a fun thing to do in Italy. In fact, our social calendar revolves around extending and accepting dinner invitations. In our house, cooking in Tuscany for our friends begins with sitting […]

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Fun in Florence – great things to do for the young and not-so-young!

When was the last time you had real fun? You know, actual giddy, giggling fun – like you had playing red rover-red rover in the school yard or skating in the park as a child, or spinning in circles until you fell laughing to the ground? Whilst we at Artviva enjoy showing lucky visitors to […]

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Terracotta Fair – cooked earth, fine art in Florence

One of Tuscany’s great traditions is about to be showcased in Florence – artworks made from ceramics and terracotta at the Fiera Internazionale della Ceramica 2011. Terracotta and ceramics have played an important role in the history of Italy dating back since Etruscan times, not only in regards to the great artworks produced, but also […]

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A little-known Tuscan treasure: San Casciano

Think Tuscany – or dream Tuscany as the case may rightly be! – and perhaps your mind travels to Italy and winds up in Siena and the charming village town of San Gimignano village towns in Tuscany. Maybe you mentally visit the wonderful Cortona (of ‘Under the Tuscan Sun’ fame) or some other charming Tuscan […]

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Setting sights on sites & scents of Florence: Pitti Immagine FRAGRANZE

Tuscans love to tell the story of how their very own Catherine De’ Medici left her home in Florence in 1533 for France to marry then-prince and later King Henry II, taking with her the traditional Tuscan recipe for Onion Soup, ‘Zuppa di cipolle toscana’  which soon became ‘Soupe d’oignons’ – French Onion Soup. Catherine […]

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Garibaldi – stature and statues in Italy

Visit Florence, Rome, Venice, or almost any other Italian city, town or charming village in Italy, and you are bound to find a street, piazza, important building or monument named ‘Garibaldi’ (pronounced something like, ‘Garry-ba-l-dee’). Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-1882) has become a national hero for his efforts in leading an Italian revolution in 1848, together with Giuseppe […]

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La Foresteria Del Boccone – is this the best Tuscany restaurant?

Whilst every day is splendid in Tuscany, some days are just that little bit more special. Our great day out in Tuscany from Florence started with our private Tuscan driver arriving at our accommodation in Florence to collect us. Just a few moments out of Florence’s city centre, we stopped in at Piazzale Michelangelo, the […]

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Bistecca alla Fiorentina

Florence is famous for many things – it’s art, history and natural landscapes, for being the home of some of the world’s most famous architecture and of course, for its food and wine! Whilst many food and wine products are exported to be enjoyed around the world, one thing which cannot be exported is the […]

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