While Florence is looking busy for the foreseeable future and the tourism industry is enjoying a much-needed boost, perhaps we should carve out some time to consider what, if any, lasting lessons we’ve learned from the pandemic. That’s why, at the height of the boom, we are publishing our Environment Issue, titled Our Piece of Earth.
Beyond the impactful cover designed by Bologna-based illustrator Francesco Amura, aka @creatingmonkey on Instagram, you’ll find out about local associations that are taking practical steps to reduce, reuse, recycle and recover, the four Rs of sustainability, such as a company that grows mushrooms in used coffee grounds and a think tank that is advising Florence’s administration to set out the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. You’ll discover a garden with an irresistible view of Florence that is filled with art in primary colours, the life’s work of Alice Esclapon de Villeneuve, and meet bohemian “artiginer” (a portmanteau of artisan and designer) Cosimo De Vita. Deirdre Pirro visits the historic Caccini garden in need of some TLC, Barberino Designer Outlet sets out its green approach to shopping in Tuscany, Harry Cochrane meets Florence’s animal population, AKA the doggies in shop windows and Hershey Felder explains how it was the environment that enticed him to move to Florence.
Coffee continues as a focus in this May edition as I interview Joshua Dick, who sold his market leader company that marketed cleaning products for coffee machines and then moved to Florence with his family. The caffeine rush continues with Phoebe Hunt’s cupping experience at Ditta Artigianale’s Scuola del Caffè in piazza Sant’Ambrogio, while my own coffee education got underway at La Marzocco’s brilliant Accademia del Caffè Espresso in the Florentine hills, a 20-minute drive from the city centre.
We welcome Martina Bartolozzi (“Italian-American foodie, traveler & ex butcher”) to our pages with a look at women on the Tuscan food scene who have fully embraced an environment-first approach to their businesses, while we sadly bid our intern of six months Hayley Daffern farewell with her round-up of five favourite nightclub spots.
Finally, a huge thank-you to the 500 people who joined The Florentine and Hershey Felder Presents at Cinema Odeon Firenze on April 20 for the red carpet premiere of The Verdi Traviata. It was incredible to see our community all together again for a celebration of culture as we collectively continue a drive to innovate creativity in Florence.
Next up on our community events calendar is a spring lunch in the recently restored square by the ever-entertaining 25hours Hotel Piazza San Paolino on May 4. See you there!