When tourists think of Florence, their thoughts immediately direct towards the vast amount of history, architecture and culture the city has to offer. Like every historic city, Florence has a few hidden gems that could draw in great public attention if given a little more touristic boost. What few tourists know is Florence’s expertise in perfumes.
Today, “Florence, City of Perfumes” was announced as an initiative to take tourists through the city’s extensive history and craft in perfumery. The proposed tour itinerary was presented this morning by Alessandro Vittorio Sorani, president of Artex, John Bettarini, councilor Tourism and Economic Development City of Florence, and Stefano Romagnoli, Economic Promotion for the Tuscany Region.
In an effort to increase touristic awareness of Florentine perfumes, Artex, Regione Toscana and City of Florence joined forces, bringing forth a plan to show tourists a charming variety of shops, perfumeries, pharmacies, grocery stores and ancient herbalists whose fixation on perfume exemplifies true artistry. In total, 17 historical artisan perfumeries are on this tour’s map, giving tourists a well-rounded perspective of what Florence has to offer. Tourists will get an inside view of the unique customization brought to the table by each perfume artisan, involving the principles of natural cosmetics, innovative technology and high quality resources. Participating companies include Acqua dell’Elba, Divina Essentia and Mirko Buffini Firenze.
According to Giovanni Bettarini, “perfumers offer something different, not only for local culture, but as a tourist attraction.” As a city that attracts a high volume of foreign visitors, creating tours that would be dedicated to a unique form of Tuscan artistry would give tourists yet another reason to visit the renowned city. Diversifying options for the region from museum tours and wine tastings, the perfume tours would allow the city to explore its cultural options in catering to a worldwide demographic.
The proposed route will wind through several Florentine establishments, perfumeries and gardens, all of which will tell the tale of perfume’s place in the city dating back to the days of the Medici family’s ruling. The intrigue of history for tourists will come along the sweetly-scented journey, as tourists will learn about perfume’s uses in the court and in Renaissance Florentine nobility, who relied on perfume for both personal and environmental purposes.
For Alessandro Vittorio Sorani, “perfumes can give the gift of experience.” Sharing the stories behind the scents will promote all aspects of Florence’s history and culture, while also encouraging visitors to look beyond the aesthetic beauty of this city.
Stefano Romagnoli also believes that Florence is more than just a place of theatre art. Not only will this tour initiative raise awareness for the various offerings Florence has for tourists, it will boost local economy by increasing interest in local retailers.
Florence is a perfume capital that many do not seem to know about. It was Catherine de Medici who capitalized on Italian perfumes in the French court and began the historic and artistic roots of perfume in this city’s culture. This is one of many pieces of knowledge that tourists will walk away with after a “Florence, City of Perfumes” tour, unravelling the historic and creative process behind the creation of unique Tuscan perfumes. Allowing tourists the opportunity to observe the entire creation process will take them on an unforgettable journey into the past, while simultaneously promoting the craftsmanship of local Florentine merchants.