At Weekend in Italy, we are proud to be associated with the delightful, energetic, Kathy McCabe, and her Dream of Italy video series, and website. Her series airs on public television in the United States and is available on YouTube as well. One of the season two episodes focuses on our fascinating Florence. Through her plentiful Italian friends, she films each show sharing the expertise of many Italian families, entrepreneurs, and historians, all experts in their respective fields. Kathy, an expert herself, has the uncanny ability to express the pride all Italians have regarding their heritage, and the tremendous historical art, architecture, and culture found in our beautiful country. We’ll be sharing more interesting details about Kathy, and Dream of Italy in the coming weeks, so be sure to visit us often!
Florence is the capital of the Tuscany region. The city is the most populous Tuscan city, and it attracts millions of tourists each year. We all know the area as the birthplace of the Renaissance; however, you may not be aware of its stormy political history, including rule under the Medici family, as well as several republican and religious insurgencies. It was the Florentine dialect that formed the foundational Italian language. You can visit the Medici Chapels with us to gain greater insight into part of our history.
In this episode, Kathy gives us incredible and up-close insights to the Duomo’s restoration, which is a never-ending process. We meet Monsignor Timothy Verdon, and Marcello, a stonemason from a family of masons for generations, who are both dedicated to the craftsmanship and restoration efforts of the Duomo. Pick up tickets to tour this magnificent cathedral today!
We are also introduced to the Advancing Women’s Artist Foundation, where we learn of the only female interpretation of the The Last Supper painting. The details are amazing, and it is also currently being restored! Sister Plautilla Nelli taught herself to paint, and she is the only known female who ever painted the iconic scene. Sister Nelli joined the sisterhood at the age of 14 and lived at the St. Catherine of Sienna convent in Florence. The Last Supper is the only painting she ever signed, even though she completed many large devotional pieces. Her rendition is an incredible seven meters long! We can also see other various depictions of The Last Supper paintings here.
In other segments, we meet an inventive street artist, learn to make fabulous Italian veggie soup, paint delicate frescos and gain a new perspective of Florence from the eyes of the Arno River, and the Ponte Vecchio bridge. The bridge was originally built to privately join the Medici home to the city to allow the family to commute to work without being approached by the public. Learn more Medici secrets here, on a trip to the Palazzo Vecchio!
We also encounter a winemaking family that dates to the late 1300s and is the second oldest winery in the world. Today it is managed by all females, whose family can be linked to the Medici family. If wine peaks your interest, our Tuscan wine trail is a can’t miss opportunity!
You can’t miss taking one of our wonderous walking tours of Florence to soak up our culture of art and cuisine here.
You don’t need to keep dreaming of Italy! You’ve experienced it through Kathy’s fabulous series. Now come live it by booking a tour for you and your family today! Seeing Florence through Kathy’s eyes is a fun and educational experience, and you get a wonderful flavor of what awaits you on your visit!