A friendly city, with an exceptional artistic and cultural heritage with a conference center of excellence in the heart of Old Town.
1. Art, history and modernity
“A friendly city, with an exceptional artistic and cultural heritage with a conference center of excellence in the heart of Old Town.” That’s how I like to introduce our Florence congress, not just a tourist destination revered around the world for its wealth of art, history, science, fashion, food and wine.
Florence is beautiful. Its historical center, UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1982, is an open-air museum. Every building, every street, every church tell an old story, each one different from the other. Yet this “masterpiece” city proposes itself to the meetings industry with an extraordinary offer: a modern congress system perfectly insert into the context and history of the city, that makes living a unique experience to thousands of participants.
Florence is a city of art, ancient, rich and complex, but it offers at the same time efficient and modern congress opportunities. A combination that cannot be found in any other city in the world.
The “heart” of the offer is the Convention Center, composed of three structures – Fortezza da Basso, the Business Center and the Congress Palace – located in a beautiful park and a pedestrian area. But many other possibilities are offered to the organizers, both in town and in the surrounding area.
Moreover, a network of specialized companies offers all kinds of services for the organization of events and conferences of all types and sizes.
Finally, there’s a really wide offer of hospitality: only in the center, is close to 14,000 rooms. High-level hotels, many of them in old buildings and with antique furnishings.
2. Your meeting becomes the legend
Thanks to the involvement of public bodies such as the Province and the Municipality of Florence, you can have at your disposal institutional locations of great prestige as Palazzo Vecchio for gala dinners or important events (recently hosted the World Union of Mayors), Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Pitti Palace and many other historical residences in Florence.
A series of unconventional location like the Stazione Leopolda (widely used for international events such as BUY TOURISM ONLINE or fashion shows), the Church of Santo Stefano al Ponte (near the Ponte Vecchio) and many others, offers to the organizers a range of striking, unique, and fully efficient possibilities.
3.The Congress Center
The congress and exhibition citadel is located in the center: just five minutes’ walk from the train station of Santa Maria Novella, 1 km from the cathedral, 5 Km from the International Airport Amerigo Vespucci (Peretola). It’s easy to reach by public transport, or with the modern tramway. The complex of 100,000 square meters consists of three buildings, adjacent to each other, representing a fascinating journey through the history and development of Florence. The sixteenth century Fortezza da Basso – one of the finest examples of Renaissance military architecture, Villa Vittoria Congress Palace – a jewel of the nineteenth century – and the Business Center opened in 1974. The three structures are able to accommodate 20,000 participants.
4. The jewels of Florence
In Florence, the operators of the meetings industry can find not only large structures, but also the most extensive and exciting palette of opportunities for events of any size and style. All in the name of great beauty and amazing functionality.
Here are some examples of “jewels” symbols of the quality and exceptionality of Florence.
In the streets of Old Town shines, among many others, blazons of the Palazzo Ximenes Panciatichi (15th century), with its sumptuous decorations and furnishings, and its winter garden and yard. Palazzo Capponi: one of the most representative venues of the 18th century in Florence, with magnificent decorations.
Along the Arno river, overlooking the “Silver” River with a great panorama over the city, there’s Palazzo Gianfigliazzi Bonaparte, with its magical names’ halls: the Music, the clock, the paintings, the lilies hall. Nearby the elegant baroque Palazzo Corsini with its 3 halls.
The hills around Florence are rich in historic abode and villas available for the meetings industry, as the 15th century Villa Castelletti with its park and the splendid Italian garden, or the Villa Corsini a Mezzomonte with huge indoor and outdoor spaces, and even heliport.
These are just a few examples. But Florence offers dozens of other “jewels”, noble villas and castles, palaces and mansions where once lived the characters that now populate the history books. unique places for unforgettable meetings.
5. Florence Convention Bureau
The main “engine” of conference activities of the city is the Florence Convention Bureau. Teamwork and synergy between public and private have secured the support of the Tuscany Region, the Province, the City and the major local institutions to more than 70 members among hotels, abodes, catering, service and communication companies.
FCB is the sole reference for the organizer for all their organizational needs. It provides privileged contracts and favourable rates, such as:
- Room Manager Service; you can manage both large allotment in few minutes, but also book directly with the hotel from our room manager with FCB special rate for hotels;
- Agreement with Trenitalia: free or discounted services for Cartafreccia holders;
- Agreement with Terravision (airport connection): special fees for transfer to the Airport of Pisa and facilities in 18 European cities in which Terravision operates;
- Agreement with ATAF (bus and tram): free travel overall the network for the duration of the conference and facilities for the airport;
- Florence Congress Card: free service card – downloadable from the website of the Convention Bureau- which offers several advantages for entrance to museums, cultural sites, facilities for leisure, nightlife, shopping, dining and entertainment, spas, golf courses, visits tours, bike rental, taxi, chauffeur-driven cars for airport transfers and other services.
6. An event in Florence: the surprise of ease
Despite the time of crisis, the Florence conference activity is growing. As some of our major players said, attending a meeting in Florence is “cool”. So if you want a high participation in your meetings, choose Florence: it will be good start.
But our success is not the result of a trend. You will be surprised how easy it is to organize an event in Florence: all resources work in team and you can get much cooperation in solving thorny problems . Here in Florence we have long understood that the meeting industry is a real industry, with its own rules and requirements. We focused on those rules and those needs, and the market rewards us.