Girl in Florence

A Tuscan Texan immersed in Florentine life

A Personal Guide To The Santo Spirito Neighborhood


When I first came back to Florence after a whirlwind honeymoon and visit back to my hometown in Texas, I wanted to plan out a sort of editorial calendar for the blog. Most of the time, posts are generated from a whim, a sort of ‘ahah’ moment when I least expect it. Asking my readers, you guys, for tips on what you’d most like to see really helped me in planning this year’s posts, beginning with cool things to do in town (like these free or almost free museums) and more in-depth neighborhood guides. I decided to start with a homage to Santo Spirito neighborhood, a personal favorite area and one that is brimming with cool spots. Just strolling down the street, you can see anything; people having conversations on the street, vespas whizzing by, buying fruit, people slowly and steadily sweeping their storefronts.

This place is real life folks, and where I hope to always be in our continuing Florentine adventures.

Where we begin, at Buontalenti's fountain
Where we begin, at Buontalenti’s fountain


Before reading, I also recommending checking out these previous posts based in the same side of the river, known as the ‘oltrarno’ that you might have missed.

Uhh…Where Is It, Anyway?

For purposes of a sort of ‘guide’ the first question is where the hell is this place anyway? I will be adding a customized google map below with all of the suggestions mentioned in this post added to make it all easier to save. But in this post, I am sticking to the area stretching from ponte santa trinita to ponte carraia, and the area surrounding piazza carmine. Main streets include via maggio, via di santo spirito, via serragli, via delle chiesa, via santa monaca. The area by Palazzo Pitti, San Frediano, and Tasso will be, alas, for another day.

DSCF4782 DSCF4774

The best way I can describe this quartiere is as a lively resident enclave south of the river, centered around the Santo Spirito church in the sixth sesto of Florence. When I was a student and my Italian sucked — I used to call it ‘Santa (as in Santa Claus) Spirit’ piazza.  The pros is that it has plenty of local color and atmosphere — small shops, restaurants, local artisans, and bottegas that represent the Italian spirit that many of us adore. The cons are that the square can be really noisy at night with people sitting on the steps with their Gusta pizza boxes and beer during the summer months leaving their trash stacked by trash cans (seriously guy there are numerous dumpsters in this area) and its fair share of harmless drunks. If you avoid sleeping in the square itself, you’ll likely adore this neighborhood just as much as I do.

Here, purposely get lost and embrace it.

What To See

First things first — the glaringly obvious Santo Spirito Church open every morning except Wednesday, 9.30am – 12.30pm. Ignore the fact that people love to instagram the facade (designed by Brunelleschi), the weird thing is that many never make it inside the church. It dates back to the 1400’s, and before then, it was a sort of hodgepodge for an early humanism movement in the city.  Not exactly part of the rest of Florence, the area had its share of issues with its mix of noble families and poor laborers ready for a revolt. The church as we see it today was envisioned by architect Filippo Brunelleschi — you know, that guy who is famous for another church in Florence and who here has created a cavernous and beautiful space. Updated for 2017: the outside cloister and refectory has now been opened to the public (3€ entrance) which you can read more about in my friend ArtTrav’s blog post.

This is a shame because it is breathtakingly beautiful and surprisingly ginormous. Notable art pieces can be seen here too, Michelangelo carved a wooden crucifix when he was only 17 year’s old, it now sits in an octagonal sacristy in the west side of the church. Another must see is the Bini-Capponi Chapel, which houses the St. Monica Establishing the Rule of the Augustinian Nuns painting by Francesco Botticini. Also worth a visit is the Cenacolo di Santo Spirito next door, located in the old refectory in the monastery, it’s a cool space.

Another favorite church is that of the Roman-Gothic Santa Maria del Carmine, which is sorely under-visited by the many tourists that visit Florence (open every day but Sunday, 10am-12pm). made famous for the Brancacci Chapel with Renaissance frescoes by Masaccio and Masolino da Panicale, it is of the Carmelite order. in 1771, a large fire took out most of the church but the Brancacci and Corsini chapels remained (fortunately) unscathed.

Brancacci Chapel
Brancacci Chapel

The square is also a pleasant place to pass time, from morning until evening. There are numerous cafes, including the ‘first’ of hipster joints in Florence, Volume Cafe, the sorta sketchy Pop Cafe, and Tamerò. The central fountain is currently undergoing renovation but it tends to be a meeting point of it’s own. People come here with their dogs, to eat their sandwiches or just to chat on the square’s stone benches. In the morning there are a few fruit and vegetable stands and clothes, depending on the day.

santo spirito

Also have a look at the events at the St. Mark’s English church on Via Maggio 16-18 
which hosts regular opera performances and various events. They have started a writing group that is worth checking out, I find them extremely nice and approachable even if I am not the churchgoing kind of person myself.

While in the area, pop into one of the many contemporary art galleries (Eduardo Secci Contemporary etc) on this street, they are free to enter and welcome visitors. I know it can be intimidating to go inside an empty gallery but trust me when I say it’s worth it!

A stop at the British Institute ‘Harold Acton’ Library on Lungarno Guicciardini 9 is also recommended, it is a place of learning and a place of comfortable refuge. If you are visiting for a longer period of time, consider taking one of their ‘history of art’ courses which are not only informative to learning about the world around you, but they are also fun — the lecturers are really incredible.

harold acton library in florence

Where to Shop

Ah for the love of shopping, this area is great for small boutique shops and artisan-made goods. One of my favorite streets is via di santo spirito just behind the church on the way to the Arno river, there are so many cool places on this street, some affordable, some not so much. My advice is to wander through the tiny and extremely picturesque alleyways in the area, find a favorite corner — a special shop.

  • One of my favorites for jewelry are the ‘one of a kind’ funky pieces of Angela Caputi, who’s shop on via di santo spirito is a lovely foray into her colorful world of beads and statement necklaces. address:  Via di Santo Spirito, 58. She is a real success story in Italy, she began creating jewelry in the mid 1970’s, she takes inspiration from 1940’s American films and things that take her fancy. She even has pieces displayed in the Palazzo Pitti Costume gallery. It should be noted that all of her jewelry is made in Italy using Italian products and materials.
  • And Company on Via Maggio 47 is always my top place to shop for really nice gifts with a Florence design edge. This is the beloved brainchild of my friend Betty Soldi, you’ll see her calligraphy everywhere. Beautiful emblazoned upon delicate espresso cups and mugs, plate-wear and throw pillow, this place is a dream. She is an inspiration, Betty, and I think it’s  impossible to leave this store without buying something. The ideal place for upmarket souvenirs, gifts, or unique pieces to decorate your Florentine home.

  • Ceri Vintage is always a lot of fun for truly high quality European vintage wear and accessories (think Chloé, Stella Mc Cartney, Burberry). You can also find really cool relics of the past here, this a bevy of the unusual. I highly recommend a visit. address: Via dei Serragli 26/r


ceri vintage

  • Anna Fuca Atelier. Ok you probably aren’t going to look for an atelier wedding dress maker every day but Anna is something really special. Originally from Sicily, her little shop on via serragli had me at hello. After spotting her dresses from the window of her studio on daily walks with my dog, I finally worked up the courage to ask her to make my wedding dress, which we did over a period of several months — picking fabrics and going over the design together If you fancy a peek or want her to make your dress, I recommend it! Ps. As soon as I get the photos back from our photographer — I will be sharing them! address: Via dei Serragli, 7.
Inside her breathtaking studio!
Inside her breathtaking studio!
  • Société Anonyme Deux, a new addition to Via Maggio, it is located in the old location of And Company Shop which moved across the street. It’s a small shop with a North-European bohemian style selling men and women’s clothing and accessories, their motto feels best expressed by this tagline “Les modes passent, le style est éternel” (fads tend to fade quickly, style is internal). address: Via Maggio, 60r, 50125 Firenze. Open 10-2pm, 3:30-7:30pm. Closed Sunday, shorter hours on Monday (3:30-7:30pm). 
  • One of my favorite local places in this area is Officine Nora – Contemporary jewelry work/shop on Via dei Preti, 4. An artisan co-working space for local jewelers that is so so cool. I’ve visited on several occasions and have to say that their work is incredibley beautiful. Give them a heads up if you plan to visit, and this is the place to get something truly unique. website. 
  • Dexter on via maggio 7r is a small shop founded in 2011 featuring very cool bohemian, vintage-inspired clothing with a culture edge by up and coming designers hand-delected by the cool owner. Expect plenty of textures and warm colors, for something a little different, definitely recommend a visit. facebook page.
  • Vincent Croce is on the corner of Borgo S. Frediano, 1 and Via Maggio and quite a cute shop for accessories, women’s clothes and my most recent find here thanks to my friend Shannon, summer ballet flats made from recycled plastic (oh and they smell like strawberries). 
  • Il Cortile di Marianna Bartolucci | Via dei Serragli, 12. This cute shop on via serragli sells women clothes, artisan-made shoes, handcrafted jewelry and the most beautiful underwear and bras I’ve seen in a long time. Quite simply put, this place is a gem.
  • Marina Calamai | via santo spirito 14. A local Florentine artist who also studied in Paris has a beautiful 360 -degree panoramic studio in the Oltrarno where she works on both her art and custom made jewelry, homewares. I especially love her bronze-plated accessories, cupcake inspired ring line and vitamin place mats.
  • Albrici | Via dei Serragli, 20r, an antique store from 1961 that also sells high-end vintage clothes is a recent find. In fact, I’d argue one of the best finds this year along the category of “stores I used to walk past.” Make sure to explore every nook and cranny to revisit fashion throughout the decades.
  • L’Ippogrifo is a beautiful shop displaying over 500 years of old Florentine techniques etching on copper plates and imprinting on canvas by artist Gianni Raffaelli. He also sells Florentine motif prints and other interesting knickknacks. address: Via di Santo Spirito, 5/r, 50125, open Mon-Sat 10am-7pm.

Gianni Raffaelli

Where To Eat

There are so many places in this area, I really can’t name them all for fear of writing a ridiculously long post that you will never read. I’m not going to tell you about Gusta because honestly, you’ve probably read about them anyway and I’m not that big a fan, they always insist on speaking to me in English (annoying) and acting like they own the world.  Instead, I love the more intimate ‘Da Gherardo’ on borgo san frediano and created a special pizza list here.  Instead here are a few foodie options in the area that I personally adore.

  • Sott’Arno | The neighborhood cafe that everyone has always wanted. If you don’t yet know Betty Soldi and her partner Matteo, it’s about time to get your head out of the sand. They are the brilliant minds behind Ad Astra Hotel & SoprArno suites, and Betty has one of my favorite souvenir shops in the city And Company right next door to this cafe. Sott’Arno is Matteo’s baby, one that is lovingly run by Fratelli Lunardi. The cafe itself is a small space with a few tables offering up a late breakfast or quick lunch in the form of gourmet panini. Try the Florentine favorites (get the ciccioli! and peperoni sotto’olio) and sweets. My all-time favorite sandwich is the one that Matteo himself coined “oooh,” kept simple with pan di ramerino (rosemary bread) and paired with excellent prosciutto.  The walls are lined with vintage menus from restaurants that Matteo and his friends have collected over the years. address: Via Maggio, 53r, 50125 Firenze. Open 10am-6pm. Closed Sundays.
  • Il Santino, the wine bar that is part of the Santo Bevitore group remains one of the coolest places on via di santo spirito. The tiny interior means you can’t fit big groups, but it is the perfect spot to get a nice wine and cheese pairing, plus go for lunch! It’s never very crowded and they make great panini. I also love Santo Bevitore (next door) as a wonderful Italian dinner spot though it can be quite packed in the high season (reservations mandatory) though they continue to impress me with their inventive and seasonal flair.
The outside of Il Santino on via di santo spirito
The outside of Il Santino on via di santo spirito
  • Mama’s Bakery has been around for a number of years now on Via della Chiesa, 34/r
and I have to hand it to them. They are consistent with the quality of their bagels/sandwiches and make a damn good pumpkin pie during Thanksgiving. Perfect for girly meetups, brunch, or by yourself with your laptop — they have WiFi.
  • The budget-friendly Il Chicco di Caffe Dalla Lola has been a local favorite for years on via della chiesa 16r, across from Cafe delle Note. It boasts an affordably daily chasing lunch menu and I’e had quite a few delicious meals here, including anytime they serve cacio e pepe pici. 
  • Cheap & Cheerful is the best way to describe I Raddi di Santo Spirito just off of the main square, a small spot with an outside terrace where you can dive into Tuscany’s “cucina povera” such as pappa al pomodoro, Lampredotto or even just an excellent panino stuffed with whatever they have behind the bar. 
  • Trattoria Giovanni is my go-to spot for lunch in this area. When you call and make a reservation, you actually get Giovanni’s personal line which always makes me giggle. It’s a simple trattoria serving up local Tuscan food such as bistecca (Florentine steak) and sauteed bietole and they do it well, the lunch menu is very affordable (around 11 euros) and they serve plenty of seasonal dishes. Highly recommend  Address: Via Sant’Agostino, 38, Firenze.

trattoria giovanni

  • Another budget-friendly spot for lunch is the pleasant Vivanda on Via Santa Monaca, 7. I actually hit up this place really often since they always have healthy options and serve organic wine from their own producers. The menu at lunch is only 10 euros and recently I had a delicious pumpkin cream soup and fried goat cheese balls (is there a nicer way to write that?).


  • Angiolino Trattoria ai 13 Arrosti is another gem on Via Santo Spirito 36. The cool interior makes it a perfect dinner date and big enough for a group solution, prices remain in the medium range. I actually came here for my rehearsal dinner before the wedding and my family loved it. The food is on the hearty side (ossobucco, polpette) – get the white bean and tuna starter. Desserts are damn good as well. Also it made my friend Coral of Curious Appetite’s best restaurants of 2015.


  • At first I hesitated listing Trattoria La Casalinga only because the last time I went was in 2008 but luckily I recently returned and was seriously impressed with our meal. They serve good home-cookin’, Tuscan cuisine for fair prices with well I’ll be honest ‘meh’ service. Definitely worth adding to the list though. Have you gone recently? address: Via dei Michelozzo 9/r


  • A cool vegetarian option is Cuculia Bookshop on Via dei Serragli, 3/r

. The interior is warm and cozy, it’s a sort of bookshop and place for cultural gatherings as well as a restaurant. The food is pretty good as well, also ask for the aperitivo platter which is always a great deal.
  • Pint of View is a Korean fusion restaurant by the same owners offering cocktails, food and craft beer on Borgo Tegolaio, 17/r. Hipsters retro is the vibe and the food is always spot on. I especially love their pollo fritto (fried chicken), jab cea (a sweet and savory dish of stir-fried glass noodles and vegetables). 
  • Fish lovers might want to stop by Marina di Santo Spirito, an upmarket restaurant on Via Maffia 1/C,  a place I’ve heard many good things about but i have yet to try myself (full disclosure hear on the blog) especially regarding their crudo (raw) platters and tasting menus. Expect to pay at least 60€ a person.
  • Gurdulu is a restaurant that has opened in the ex-CiBi on Via delle Caldaie, 12, just behind Santo Spirito. The retro vibe has stayed, with a little courtyard that looks promising for the warmer months, but the food has a more creative edge. When I ate here, the chef was the famous Entiana Osmenzeza who is no longer there, but my experience (under her supervision granted) was really quite nice. If you’ve been recently feel free to comment on the post on the new menu and chef. What’s great about Gurdulu is that it’s also a great place for a cocktail and a bite, bartender Sabrina Galloni is quite the skilled mixologist and drinks are paired with curated tapas. To give you an idea of the menu when I went we ordered sweetbreads which might sound daunting being that they are an animal’s pancreas and thymus glands, but served with chestnut, it goes together so well you forget what you’re eating. We also had the ‘rana pescatrice’ (a type of monkfish) with artichokes and potatoes, a sort of trippa tower with shaved truffles and Parmesan.
Inside of Gurdulu
Inside of Gurdulu


  • A Crudo is another sweet spot on Via Mazzetta 5r. They just opened last January, in a space that once once a fish market turned deposit for over 15 years. The ‘star’ of the menu here is their special ‘tartare’, I counted over nine versions and that doesn’t even include the dessert options. I tried a few different ones, my favorite was the ‘Manicomio’ with capers, beef, anchovies, parsley, onion and the list goes on. They also serve up delicious carpacci and tagliere (meat and cheese boards) and Chef Niccolo kind of resembles an Italian Bradley Cooper, not that I was looking ;-).

a crudo a crudo firenze

Also I might have forgotten to mention a new bar in town. Rasputin, the newest ‘secret’ speakeasy has been covered my girl Coral in Vice. I just discovered it recently myself and I am fan. Besides the fact that the ‘door’ is hidden and you feel like you’ve just uncovered a secret world of throw rugs, antiques and vermouth.  I won’t give away the address but trust me, it’s worth finding. Call to book a table+39 055 280 399.

Regular Events

For market lovers, Santo Spirito is a real gem. Twice a month there are two popular markets, including an antique/flea version every second Sunday teaming with treasures, and an organic food market every third third of the month (please get the organic aged parmesan here, it is THE BEST). Both are of high-quality and everyone seems to congregate here to pick up their fresh ricotta cheese, bread, or just to catch up on local gossip. Both run from 9am-7pm, it’s a lot of fun so check it out!

Where To Stay

Obviously with me living nearby, I am hardly a local expert when it comes to hotels. However, if you want to forgo Airbnb, here are some options.

  • Soprarno Suites, one of the best boutique hotels in the city, every room is themed and more spectacular then you can imagine. They feature expert calligrapher, Betty Soldi’s beautiful prose and are outfitted with antique furniture and free-standing claw bathtubs. Nico and I stayed here on our wedding night, I couldn’t have imagined going anywhere else. address: Via Maggio 35. Rates start at €125 a night (low season).
Photo credit:
Photo credit:
  • A great 3-star option is the 16th century Palazzo Guadagni in piazza santo spirito. The spectacular terrace offers a beautiful viewpoint of the oltrarno. Rates start from 92€ per night (low season). address: Piazza Santo Spirito 9.

Everyday Shops

In addition to the eating, drinking, playing and buying, you can actually find useful places for every day life here too. What I mean by that is that there are actual stores to buy things like fruit and vegetables, not just postcards of Florence.

  • Hair: Wave on via di santo spirito is where I currently go to get my hair done. It isn’t cheap, but I like the fact that their products are Aveda and don’t fizzle the last remaining follicle off my skull. They know what they’re doing, have actual functioning WiFi and the place is pretty cool. They have a chandelier made of bicycle tires that I wish I could take home.
  • Fresh Fruit & Vegetables can be found at the local Ortofrutticoli on Via Sant’Agostino 26-28. This small shop has seasonal picks literally flowing outside of the door and you can be guaranteed of the quality and freshness, plus they aren’t overpriced like the guy around my house on borgo san jacopo. 

santo spirito florence

  • Libreria Clichy, via maggio 12r. As so many bookstores close, a new (International) one with over 9,000 books opened last year on via maggio. Clichy is a cool place, yes it’s small but they have a beautiful little courtyard and even invite you to come read and drink free coffee.
  • Il Santo Forno is my local gluten-friendly spot in this area, it on Via Santa Monaca, 3r, the baked goods in this very unique and cool space. In fact, you can read more about it on my friend Nardia’s website — Lost in Florence. Everything here is amazing, you can also get a cheap lunch to do (panino).



For those who are looking to have a drink, you won’t be disappointed here. What I like about this area, is that it is a real mix of local Italians and foreigners, a hell of a lot better than anything you’ll find on the sticky floors at Dolce Zucchero.

  • My preferred places for a drink in this area include Volume in piazza santo spirito, ignore the service because well, it sucks. They do make a decentmoscow mule and often have live music on the weekends, you’ll like the interior as well. Think purposed furniture.


  • If beer is your thing, you have more than one option here – try ‘The Hidden Pub’ in Piazza del Carmine where you can catch the Florentine soccer matches or access free WiFi.
  • The second place for beer lovers is Archea Brewery on via serragli 44, it’s one of the best craft beer spots in the city and it doesn’t disappoint.

 Google Map Of This Santo Spirito ‘Girl in Florence’ Guide


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33 Responses

  1. We stayed in an apartment on on Via dei Serragli in summer 2014 after attending a writer’s workshop in Castellina. Imagine how excited we were to discover it was the Palazzo Antinori Brindisi…a palace built in the fifteenth century and renovated in the nineteenth century.

    From Wikipedia…
    “The facade on Via dei Serragli is very simple with twin doorways on each side and two rows of simple rectangular windows highlighted by cornices on the upper floors.” The entryway to our apartment is the passageway for carriages covered by vaults lowered and decorated with statues and geometric colums in imitation stone. We overlook a beautiful garden where Poggi …from Wikipedia…”showed all his skills, magnifying the illusion of proportion to the neo-Renaissance loggia set in an elevated position reached by a steep stone staircase.

    It was the most amazing place to stay and we loved exploring the Santo Spirito neighborhood. Brought home to Australia some lovely purchases from the street market.

    1. Awesome list, Georgie! Very complete and an indispensible guide to anyone curious about the Oltrarno. Well done, bella!
      Glad you liked the rehearsal dinner at Angiolino’s! 🙂 Thanks for mentioning my Best of Resto guide xoxo

      1. I’m really happy you mentioned is because now it’s kind of a favorite spot. And I had no idea how much space was in that place! Perfect for larger groups. THANK YOU!

    2. Awesome list, Georgie! Very complete and an indispensable guide to anyone curious about the Oltrarno. Well done, bella!
      Glad you liked the rehearsal dinner at Angiolino’s! 🙂 Thanks for mentioning my Best of Resto guide xoxo

  2. Love this guide and totally checking out some places when I’m next in town. I’m actually working on my own ‘hood guide at the moment.. Trastevere. I always say to people that Oltrarno is the Florence equivalent because of the name. One is just across the Tiber and one is across the Arno. Great job lovely ??❤️

    1. My bella Maria, thank YOU so much for your kind comment. I really do hope you come and visit soon so I can show you these places personally! I’m happy to hear you are working on a guide, I’ll save it too because honestly having everything compiled in one neighborhood while traveling is a huge help. I need to come down and visit you soon!

  3. I love this post. I spent a few days in the Oltrarno in September of last year, it was all too short. I stayed right off of Piazza della Passera and it was fantastic. I love this area. I am planning on returning next year and spending more time here.
    Thank you for all the wonderful information.

    1. Ciao Rae! Thank you so much! You must have been my neighbor because I live right off of piazza della passera :). I wish you the best of luck on your next trip back to Florence!

  4. Oh my god, this is so awesome! I really appreciate the information shared about this really cool part of Florence. I will be in Florence in December and then again after the new year– yes quite far off, but I’m so damn excited that I am reading everything I can about the area. grazie!

    1. Thanks Emily! I appreciate that! Florence in December is a fine time to come, you’ll be here for all of the Christmas lights and (hopefully) less crowds. Definitely stop in this area while you’re here!

  5. Love this so much Georgette! So many of my favorites and lots of new places- I can’t wait to come back and visit! Your tips & suggestions are always spot on. Thanks for sharing your beautiful city. <3

    1. Thank you Heather for taking the time to read and comment. I adore this area and it seems to be changing every year, for the better! I am always happy to share my perspective 🙂

  6. ahh my favorite piazza. i still dream of the truffle gnocchi from osteria santo spirito. its worth a visit to florence just for that!

    1. I still have YET to go there Noelle, they are always packed when I’ve tried to visit in the past but truffle gnocchi sounds right up my alley! Have you ever been to Brindelloni near piazza carmine? They make wonderful tagliolini pasta!

  7. Thanks for this great view of our favorite hang out area in Firenze. I would like to add my two thousand lire here after living in the ‘hood.
    I would start by agreeing that Il Santino is a cool little space and I have always found the service there to be very friendly- if I am just having wine, they always slip me a little snack of prosciutto or cheese and bread. For lunch, though, I think Il Santo Bevitore is maybe the best spot across the river but only for lunch and only if you are seated in the larger front room. I dont know why dinner is such a different vibe, but it really is. The simple spaghetti with organic tomato and basil sauce is a masterpiece of simple cooking.
    I also have found that a most consistent lunch spot for food is Osteria Santo Spirito – the bruschetta is divine and they have expensive olive oil on every table. The Rigatoni with a simple (but other-worldly) tomato sauce and ricotta salata is as good as any I have had. Portions are ridiculous though. But most ridiculous is the ability to get a table outside- no one is in charge, and servers have perfected the ability to ignore the longing looks of patrons waiting at the door. Enough to turn a person off until you do get seated, and get the complimentary tapenade and a bottle of good house wine (which is not complimentary, but priced reasonably).
    I agree that Trattoria Giovanni is also consistently good and with a menu that changes daily it is a great spot for a good lunch.
    For superb service and consistently good food I love Da Ginone on Via dei Serragli– the female chef is from Sicily and the main server, Fausto, is from Sardegna and is the most accommodating and friendly service person in all of Firenze. Regular customers are there daily and intervene to recommend the Cacio e Pepe which is not on the menu, but which is as good as any I have ever had.
    For wine, you cannot beat the Fiaschetteria Fantappie just a few steps from Da Ginone. With an outdoor patio on the street on Via die Serragli it offers superb wines by the glass and now has snacks. There are a dozen wines sold sfuso as well which are a bargain- especially the Bolgheri. The bar is manned by Alessia or Matteo, both of whom are open, kind and funny. Regulars abound and are willing to include you in their conversations. They made it their mission to help my wife with her Italian and took her away from me and made her participate. It is what makes Santo Spirito a real small town neighborhood.
    Lastly, just down from Osteria Santo Spirito on Via Sant’Agostino is my favorite bakery in Firenze. Their breads are diverse and they serve excellent pizzas and other savory snacks including bread twists of pane cereale. The staff are young, and after a few visits were super friendly despite the fact that student tourists swarm the place for taglie for a cheap lunch or snack.
    I could go on (and on) but want to thank you again Georgette for your thoughtful insights, and especially the accompanying photos, which make me homesick for Florence. Hope these comments are helpful to those exploring.

    1. Allan, I was so happy to get your comment, I really appreciate how much effort you put into this reply and that means the world to a little ol’ blogger like myself! You know, I’ve never thought about Santo Bevitore for lunch but why not? Osteria Santo Spirito I have yet to visit just because, as you mentioned, getting a table outside is harder than getting into the UN. I just don’t have the patience. I’ll try Da Ginone! Thanks for the tips! It seems like there are so many places (still) that I need to discover and I was so hoping that people would see this post and share their favorites for people to read and enjoy. I’m happy to share all the Florence love!

  8. Awesome list, Georgie! Very complete and an indispensable guide to anyone curious about the Oltrarno. Well done, bella!
    Glad you liked the rehearsal dinner at Angiolino’s! 🙂 Thanks for mentioning my Best of Resto guide xoxo

    1. My pleasure Coral! You were so instrumental in helping my wedding week come together, and for that, I’ll owe you forever haha! Angiolino was spot and my family loved it :).

  9. Dear Georgette! What a lovely guide! I’m also trying to post about Santo Spirito for almost a year… vergogna!!! I’ve just posted about Borgo Ognissanti and hope to finish to write about the Oltrarno (my favorite area in Florence!). I’ve never been to Angiolino… shame. Also Gurdulu looks so interesting! I must visit these places.
    I’ve been yesterday to Casalinga and I can tell you it’s very good, as always. The point is that’s always quite busy.
    Thanks cara, good job, as always 😉
    Un bacione e complimenti!

    1. I need to check out your post too! I LOVE the idea of a guide for borgo ognissanti, also a favorite street of mine! It’s really nice that in addition to the new spots, places like Casalinga are consistent and affordable. Something I hope will remain..always. Spero che vediamoci presto~!

  10. Bien fait, Georgette! We will definitely be checking out this area the next time we’re in Florence.

  11. Grazie for this post! I’ve followed you on Instagram for a few months and finally made it to your Pinterest and blog… I lived on Via Santa Monaca right near Santo Spirito during a semester abroad and miss it so much. Panifico was my favorite! Oltrarno will always have a chunk of my heart. Ciao!

    1. Hello Marina, thanks for checking it out and taking the time to comment! Funny that you lived on via santa monaca, my landlord owns a property over there and it is gorgeous! Hope you get to come back sometime 🙂

  12. Any more suggestions in terms of places to stay near santo spirito?

  13. Wow! I remember my first visit to Florence and walking this neighborhood alone at night and seeing the windows of Anna Fuca’ lit up. I was mesmerized and have dreamed of one day having a dress by her. Sigh…When I lived in Florence last year I used to try to find the shop again (just from memory, not from Google or anything) and never could. But I saved a picture of the window and love it. Gosh I miss Florence. Now I am a travel agent in San Antonio, TX (your home town, right?) and will definitely use this post to help guide my clients. I’ve also been trying to get the hang of that cool Google Maps feature to help my clients with their trips. Very neat to see it in action here in your blog. Thanks for the great post!

  14. Nice blog! Must remember to return to it when I remember to return to Firenze.

  15. Thank you so much for this invaluable guide! We are about to make our first visit to Florence from Basel, four adults and a four-year-old boy. The small museums will be perfect as he loves art for an hour or so, and then time’s up. Long lines are also not his thing, or ours for that matter–less is indeed more. Fortunately the kid’s an adventurous eater so we won’t have to compromise on food! Your site has us really looking forward to all that.

  16. Hello Georgette,

    I absolutely loved your post! I am moving to Florence in February-March and after reading this I am more excited about it!
    Even though you posted it several years ago, I would like to ask you a question. As you lived there, how is this neighbourhood in terms of safety (for a girl mostly)? I can not find any article on it. I am asking it because I am moving there alone and my parents are slightly worried.

    Have a good day!

    Best regards

    1. Hello Kira, thank you for your support and taking the time to comment. Regarding safety, I can assure you since I still spend a lot of time in Santo Spirito. It is indeed a very safe neighborhood for women and you don’t need to worry at all. If I’m 100% honest I have always felt much more “safe” anywhere in Florence than I ever did in Texas in California <3.

Georgette Jupe

Welcome to my personal blog by a curious American girl living and working between Zug, Switzerland and Florence, Italy with my husband Nico, our newborn Annabelle and Ginger the beagle. This space is primarily to share about my love for Italy (currently on a 13 year romance) with a fair amount of real talk, practical advice, travel suggestions and adjusting to a new culture (Switzerland). Find me on IG @girlinflorence @girlinzug

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