Bare stone walls meet bright colours and contemporary design at Florence’s Hotel Calimala – a freshly refurbed palace in the city’s Centro Storico neighbourhood that opens next month.
Architect and interior designer Alex Meitlis has overhauled the entire building, known locally as Palazzo Degli Angeli. He’s preserved the 19th-century structure’s original stonework, wooden shutters and its intricate sgraffito decorations, which are scratched into plasterwork.
‘Our mission was dictated by the building’s history and age,’ says Meitlis. ‘It was important to us that every stone, crack and crevice that could be salvaged would remain within the final design. When guests wake up in their room, they will instantly know that they are in Florence and not anywhere else in the world.’
Period details in each of the hotel’s 38 rooms – which will start from €250 per night – contrast brass light fittings, mustard headboards, and mirrored wardrobes. Guests admiring the artwork in Hotel Calimala’s lobby can also pick a piece to take home with them.
In addition to a rooftop restaurant and bar, the hotel has a pool and garden, all of which look across Florence’s historic architecture.