“Otherwise, he would be far away in the jungle; tasting, touching, seeing, and feeling new things.” You cannot help but think that Rudyard Kipling would have been inspired to pen yet another The Jungle Book at Florence’s most tropical new boutique hotel, Velona’s Jungle.
A design-led guesthouse nestled in a 1950s palazzo in the secluded quietude of via Montebello, a pawprint from the greenery of the city’s principal Cascine Park, the nature theme at Velona’s Jungle adds more than a splash of eclectic originality and flair, while never letting you forget where you are. The original veined marble and lacquered parquet flooring can be none other than Florentine in feel and finery. From the exotic China blue walls with black door frame accents, metallic palm tree ornaments and luxuriant Christian Lacroix rainforest cushions to majestic tiger and parrot prints set in gold cornices, a stay at Velona’s Jungle is a walk on the urban wild side, which nevertheless guarantees sumptuous slumber thanks to the homeliness and hospitality lavished on guests by owner Veronica Grechi.
“This house is an important place for my family. My grandfather Pasquale Velona was a well-known Florentine antiques dealer and we kept many pieces in his collection. He loved to travel, something he did a lot for work. He would meet people abroad and then invite them back to Italy, welcoming them to his home and sharing with them the wonders of Florence. I grew up with the same passions and this is the essence of Velona’s Jungle, a place of exchange where art, knowledge, beauty and style are shared.”
The nod to nature extends to the Velona’s Jungle sustainable mindset: expect health-conscious vegetarian and vegan options at breakfast, from organic jams to freshly mixed muesli, guidance on environmentally friendly ways to explore Florence and Tuscany and locally crafted, upcycled furniture and fixtures that endure the test of time.
This bijou hotel will set travellers to the Renaissance city roaring this season—for its originality, Velona’s Jungle has already hit the high time with a cover story and eight-page spread in Italy’s top design magazine, Architectural Digest.
With just four suites named after famous naturalists Livingstone, Darwin, Fossey and Durrell, it’ll be a jungle out there in via Montebello. Book now, before the animals beat you to it.
Via Montebello, 86, Florence
Tel. +39 055 2741536