“Florence’s stand-out boutique hotel has trend-setting style, service and a very sought-after address on the Piazza Santa Maria Novella”
The 20 rooms are spread over the upper floors, reached by a well-concealed elevator or a broad, winding stairwell. They vary in size and layout, but all share the same soothing, neutral décor: thick cream curtains, grey carpets, chrome lamps, glass-topped tables, soft abstracts on the walls. In case that makes it sound dull, I should add that the effect is very harmonious, carefully woven together by architect Michele Bönan, who also designed many of the beds and sofas.
They also share the same basic equipment: LED Satellite TV, WiFi, minibars with complimentary soft drinks and snacks; and, in the bathrooms, large shower heads, heated towel rails, shaving mirrors, fluffy towels, robes and slippers. It’s a cosseting experience from head to toe - just what you need after a hard day’s sightseeing or shopping.
We were lucky enough to stay in one of the top-of-the-pile Master Rooms, a magnificent space (50 sq.m) immediately above the entrance, with 3 tall windows and a small balcony over the piazza. At one end sat a four-poster bed, at the other a sofa, armchairs and coffee table, while a crystal chandelier overhead set off the modern table lamps.
The duplex Penthouse Suite is on the top (fourth) floor, with a spacious and panoramic bathroom and private terrace upstairs, and a darker (but more private) bedroom downstairs. It overlooks the rooftop terrace, so chatter may drift up, but the views over Florence’s rooftops to the Duomo are superb. Also split-level is the J. K. Panoramic Loft, which has a sitting room and shower room downstairs, and a double bedroom and main bathroom upstairs - perfect for a small family. Most of the other suites look onto the inner courtyard, but are equally spacious.
The Duplex Junior Suite is large enough for 3 people and overlooks the piazza, while Deluxe Rooms are smaller with views onto the inner courtyard. The Superior and Classic Rooms are smaller still, with limited views and/or access via the gallery-landing. Some are what you would call cosy, but all are fully equipped for a pampering shower and a good night’s sleep, which is what matters.
Breakfast is served in the ground-floor dining room; or a selection can be brought to your room on a silver tray. Choose from fresh fruit, cereals, yoghurts, croissants, juices and a wide array of teas and coffees, plus hot dishes like eggs any style, pancakes and porridge.
The hotel’s restaurant, J. K. Lounge, is open for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. It’s a monochrome space decked out rather like a modern members’ club, with white armchairs and chrome angle-poise lamps. The menu of classic international dishes and seasonal Italian fare changes regularly; dishes might include Caprese salad, beef fillet, totelli pasta and vegetable tartare. Now, you can also sit outside at J.K. Terrace on the piazza, marvelling at the facade of Santa Maria Novella while you sip your cappuccino and gelato.
Afternoon tea with homemade cake is also on offer at J. K. Place, best enjoyed fireside. For cocktails head up to the bijou roof terrace or to the Pink Room with its low sofas and funky coloured lighting.
In the neighbourhood, we loved the legendary I Latini on via del Palchetti (shared tables, vast portions of pasta, cold meats, Tuscan soups and steaks); while Claudio - and many guests - recommend Trattoria Parione ("art on a plate") and Buca Mario on Piazza degli Ottavianni (homemade pasta, T-bone steak, filets of sea bass or salmon, great wines).
For a full list of recommended restaurants in Florence, see our city guide.
Children of all ages are welcome at J. K. Place and under 12s are free in their parents' room. There is a supplement for over 12s in a standard extra bed. The hotel makes an effort to welcome babies and toddlers, but be aware that the rooms are quite smart, with designer furnishings and light-coloured fabrics.
Cots Available, Extra Beds Available
Babysitting can be arranged on request.
Baby cots and strollers can be provided.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking