Gianfigliazzi Tower in Via de Tornabuoni 1 in Florence
The Gianfigliazzi Tower is located on Via de Tornabuoni 1 in Florence. This tower house better known as “Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 1” is located next to the church of Santa Trìnita and in front of the Palazzo Spini Feroni, where is the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum.
The wonderful tower, tower-house or fortified tower was built in the mid-13th century by the Guelfa family dei Ruggerini. After the Battle of Montaperti, with the Guelfi expulsion of 1260 it was almost completely demolished, rebuilt and then sold to the Fastelli family. From the early 1300s to the late 1700s, it was the residence of the Gianfigliazzi family that remained its owners until their extinction in 1764 with the Canonico Rinaldo di Lodovico.
The members of the Gianfigliazzi family had no public charge until the battle of Benevento in 1266 when the opposite political grouping of the Ghibellines lost the supremacy of the city. Thus, the family counted from that moment until 1530, with thirty priors, ten Gonfalonieri, several knights, commissioners of war and ambassadors. Beginning also the construction of the particular houses-towers and palaces that extended with elegant country houses throughout the district of Santa Trìnita, very close to Ponte Vecchio.
During the nineteenth century the tower was used by the Academy of the Nobles and in 1841 the summit or crowning was rebuilt with merlons and corbels in imitation of the Palazzo Spini Feroni that is in front of it. In the same period, the intermediate floors were inserted and new rows of rectangular windows were opened. Since the beginning of 1900, the building was the seat of the Pensione Piccioli, becoming a privileged residence for English aristocrats and writers.
After the Great War, the Pensione Piccioli reopened in 2001 as a historic residence with the name of “Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 1”. Nowadays, this magnificent tower also houses some commercial businesses and the Italian Language and Culture School: italianme the most innovative Italian language school for foreigners in Florence.
If you want to study Italian in Florence, choose the Italian language courses of this school that is inside the Gianfigliazzi Tower and that offers you a unique environment. The Gianfigliazzi Tower will surprise you with its facade covered with square stones on a regular basis, that reach the frame of the first floor, while the upper levels have a simpler “filaretto”. On the facade you can also admire five rows of windows and four coats of arms of the Gianfigliazzi with the rampant lion. Nowadays is still possible to see the old hooks, used to tie horses and to hold torches and banners. Simply a magnificent building in the heart of a magnificent city!