Santa Maria Novella is a buzzing neighborhood in Florence’s historic center, with top-notch restaurants, attractions and bars. This area might seem a bit difficult to navigate for first-time visitors, so The Culture Trip has done some fieldwork and and selected the best places to drink in this part of the city.
Restaurant, Bar, Italian, $$$
View from the Terrazza Brunelleschi
This bar, which is incidentally also one of the best restaurants in the area, is worth a visit just for its magnificent views of Florence. The Duomo and Campanile can be seen perfectly from this terrace, and at sunset the panorama is breathtakingly beautiful. It is open for lunch and for aperitivo, which is a typical Italian way of dining: visitors pay for a drink and get access to a buffet. It is located on the top floor of the Grand Hotel Baglioni, and visitors will enjoy the atmosphere and exceptional service.
Space Electronic is a great club to go to for those who really want to go all out on their night out and party until the early hours of the morning. This club has several floors with different types of music, from pop to dance and hip hop, so everyone is bound to find something that they love. Visitors should remember to grab a drink card when entering the club, otherwise they might face extra charges for ordering drinks which they will have to pay when leaving, which is a fairly common practice in some Italian nightclubs.
Harry’s Bar is one of the best bars in Florence; it is a classic locale situated on the edge of the river Arno. Come and enjoy some classic drinks like Negroni and Spritz Aperol. They are classy private rooms available for hire, where visitors can enjoy a meal and drinks in a more secluded environment.
The Dublin is an Irish pub in the center of Florence’s old town and is calmer than other bars in the area. The cold beers are a great change from the typical wines that are usually on offer in most Italian bars or restaurants, and beer-lovers will appreciate the curated selection that this bar has. There is great food here too, so having dinner at The Dublin is a great choice.
This modern little bar has a great atmosphere and is frequented by locals, especially at night when they go for an aperitivo. At Sei Divino the type of food on offer is usually cheese, ham and veggies. They have an extensive wine list and the waiters are very knowledgeable about the different types of wine, so they have great suggestions for those who want to try something new.
Although pricey, this bar has one of the best aperitivo buffet spreads in the city and some of the best views of Florence’s skyline and especially of the Duomo. The crowd is mixed, although the atmosphere is elegant since Se-sto on Arno is on the rooftop of one of the classiest, most luxurious hotels in the city. After enjoying the exquisite drinks and delicious buffet, tourists can head to the nearby La Carraia and get some of Florence’s best ice cream.
The bar at L’Orologio Hotel is great for a nice, relaxed snack accompanied by delicious drinks in one of the best hotels in Florence’s Santa Maria Novella neighborhood. Enjoy freshly made dishes, such as Tuscan ham and gorgonzola, or mortadella and parmesan cream paninis, ham or cheese platters, fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as delicious desserts including the typical cantucci taken with sweet wine, or homemade ice cream.
This cafe/bar, situated close to the Ponte Vecchio, has one of the most unique interiors in the entire city. All of the furniture inside is vintage, from its chairs to its tables, and it is also all for sale, so visitors who find anything they like and have a way to take it back home with them can buy a great souvenir from Florence. The outdoor terrace is great for hot summer nights.
One of the most popular Irish pubs in Florence, The Fiddler’s Elbow stands in close vicinity to the Santa Maria Novella station. Patrons can expect to order lots of excellent beer and revel in the Irish music that is played at The Fiddler’s Elbow.