American in Italy, bars, events, expat, italy, restaurant, tips, tuscany, Uncategorized

New Years Eve in Florence, Italy

Photo by Luca Fazzolari

Photo by Luca Fazzolari

If you are anything like me, you too probably think New Year’s Eve or Capodanno is a little overblown. Too-expensive, pressure to do something “awesome” often clouds the fact that at the end of the day it really is all about bringing in the new year the way you want to and not how you end it. That being said, it’s not like I haven’t spent a pretty crazy NYE in Cologne, Germany bar hopping and dancing with many a German lad not so many year ago.

New Year’s Eve in Italy also goes by the name of La Festa di San Silvestro and in Italy normally huge dinners are the norm. Many of our Italian friends rent houses in the countryside to celebrate with a group of friends or all go out to a restaurant to bring in the new year. Lentils are the lucky food to consume – which symbolize money and good fortune for the coming year {I will be having double portions}.

Also don’t forget to wear red underwear, yes I didn’t stutter –  it will bring you luck in the new year. I wonder if that wasn’t made up long ago by a guy with a certain fetish. 😉

However, lately I have been craving a more chill evening with good friends and good food. This year we plan to attend a friend’s house party and spend the night swilling champagne from plastic esselunga flutes and eating my homemade salsa. In Florence –  there are always numerous options for those looking to do something special, from eating at a nice restaurant, dancing the night away at the obihall-saschall or attending a castle party in the hills of Fiesole. Here are some ideas on what to do and where to go {depending on availability}.

nye florence italy

  • Night Lover’s Circus – techno house & bass music party. The Night Lovers Circus will be the host of the experimental electronic circus, arriving directly from United Kingdom and made up of acrobats, dancers, visual and choreographers. 25/30 euros per person, more details here
  • New Year’s Eve at CASTEL DI POGGIO in Fiesole. What better way to bring in the NYE {besides a house party} than dancing & drinking in a Tuscan castle. I have been to a few festas in Poggio, and it has always been a really good time! They are offering dinner, and then of course after dinner fun with different prices for each. The ,location is close to Florence and you can get more specific details on how to reserve & prices for dinner or tables here
  • New Year’s Eve at VILLA MONTALTO in Fiesole. Another villa  party situated in the hills above Florence, Italy. 35 euros will gain you entrance to dance and bring in the New Year in style while having as much spumante & drinks as your heart desires. More info here
  • Spend New Year’s Eve in Chianti. Borgo Casa al Vento is offering a special package which includes a stay at their hotel along with welcome drink, overnight stay, and a New Year’s Day brunch. €140 per person. Pretty great deal!
  • Medieval New Year’s Eve in Bagno a Ripoli (FI). Being in the heart of Tuscany – don’t think there wouldn’t be a special 1300’s style dinner and dance. If this is your kinda theme – then head over to nearby Bagno A ripoli to Antico Spedale del Bigallo. Aperitivo, meal – music & dancing, you can even rent special costumes for the night. cool!
  •  Live Music in various piazzas in the historical center. This year Renzi & the comune have decided to offer a variety of music to the public so if you feel like making no plans, you can always head into the center and enjoy the music for free. At 10pm in Piazza della Repubblica the Nick The Nightfly Quintet will provide jazz tunes for us all while in piazza annunziata the New York Gospel Spirit will be live from 10pm onwards. In piazza signoria the music will be from the Orchestra Sinfonica Ucraina Di Lugansk. Subsonica will play at midnight in Piazza Stazione. Full program in Italian here
  • New Years Eve at the Lochness Lounge – via dei benci. One of my favorite bars in town run by a tenacious Danish Redhead and her English husband – if you are looking for a chill bar with live music & a free entrance in the center of Florence. Here is where you want to go. Event details
  • New Year’s Eve dinner at Touch Florence. I wrote about my own culinary experience at Touch earlier this year, and they are offering a special menu for the cenone di san silvestro. Make sure to email them ASAP if you want to spend NYE with them as I am sure places go quickly. The food is I’m sure going to be really good and you can see the menu all detailed here on their facebook event. Expect to be wowed. 
  • “Mystery Dinner” at VILLA CARUSO BELLOSGUARDO, via bellosguardo – lastra a signa (fi).  €135,00 for dinner and participation in the show. For those who love “clue” like game dinners with class. The menu looks pretty awesome and I would act fast if you want to go. link here.
  • No official event, just an idea. If you don’t know what to do, why not invite a few friends over and each bring a dish and a bottle. Save some cheesy tunes on your playlist and just eat, drink and dance the night away! You can always check out the free concerts arranged by the comune di firenze above afterwards. 

If I missed anything that you happen to know about – write in the comments about the event. With all of my recent eating  drinking – I am sure I missed something when it came to this year’s options. In any case, be safe and have a great time! We survived December 21 and I am sure 2013 will be just as crazy as 2012.

Great list of ideas from Elena Farinelli – Ioamofirenze blog. {in Italian}

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0 Comment

  1. Yolanda Joy
    28.12.2012 at 12:51

    I’m spending the New Year in Florence this year, so this article was great to help me get my head aroun the options out there. I think we are going to go into the centre to enjoy the music and atmosphere etc, but it still hasn’t been decided. Buon Anno!

    1. ggnitaly84
      28.12.2012 at 12:54

      Thanks Yolanda! I probably could have included lots more (so many restaurants are having special nights) but I think these are the most special that I know* about. I think expecting less* from NYE is the way to go. Just be careful in the center with broken bottles and fireworks. Hopefully the comune can be a little more careful this year about controlling that 😉

  2. leahhere
    28.12.2012 at 21:00

    Perfect timing- I’m flying back to Florence tomorrow! Just to let you know I’d nominated you for an Adventure Blogger Award -see my post for more details – thought I’d share the Firenze love!