Famous faces will be spotted around Florence this week as Celebrity Fight Night festivities take off on Thursday, September 8, benefitting the Andrea Bocelli Foundation and the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center.

Close to 150 VIP guests will attend the event at the Basilica of Santa Croce complex, among them Nicolas Cage, this year’s big name. This event opens an exclusive, weeklong “Experience in Italy with Andrea Bocelli” which sees guests travel to Volterra, and to Bocelli’s birthplace, Lajatico, before leaving Tuscany to head to Venice. Sponsors of the celebrity travel package include Jeep, Falconeri and Fratelli Piccini, whereas the Santa Croce evening specifically is sponsored by designer Stefano Ricci and Florence’s own Antico Setificio Fiorentino, active since 1786 and taken over by the Ricci group from 2010 onwards.

Ricci himself will host the Santa Croce event, guiding guests through the Pazzi Chapel and leading them to the basilica cloister, where they will indulge in a buffet dinner.
“I’m honoured to be supporting Andrea Bocelli for this charity event once again,” Ricci said. “The friendship that binds me to the Bocelli family, and the pleasure of dressing one of the most renowned Italian men on earth {are the reasons} I was glad to support him in organising this edition of the Celebrity Fight Night.”

Various guests will be attending the luxurious evening, with Lonnie Ali, the wife of the late Muhammad Ali, standing out. She won't be the only ambassador for the boxing world, though: Evander Holyfield, a sporting legend of her late husband’s calibre, will be joining her.

More household names will be appearing, amongst these Ronnie Dunn and of course, the organiser, Andrea Bocelli. The world-famous tenor has not yet revealed the full musical programme, but past editions are promising, having featured artists such as Celine Dion, Donna Summer, The Village People and Jennifer Lopez.