Ciao from Florence, Italy!
I have been in Florence for over a month now and I love living here. It is a beautiful city and there is a lot to see. I am excited to spend the semester here and live like a Florentine.
I am studying in Florence through CAPA’s Global Business Institute. As a CAPA student, I had the option to live in a homestay or a student apartment and I decided to live in an apartment. I thought it would be a great way to meet other students in the program while also experiencing the Florentine lifestyle. I was placed in a four-person apartment in the Piazza Pitti-Piazza Santo Spirito neighborhood. This neighborhood is across the Arno River and is less touristy. This is where many Florentines live. There are many cafes, restaurants, and shops within minutes from my apartment, which is very convenient. I am most excited about the gelato shop right down the street from my apartment.
I live with three other girls from the CAPA program. Two of my roommates Liv and Mackenzie go to the University of Colorado in Boulder and my third roommate Bella goes to Lehigh University. My roommates are really nice, and we all get along well. We have a three-bedroom apartment, two-bathroom apartment with a kitchen, sitting area, and an in-unit washing machine. My roommate from Lehigh and I both have our own bedroom and my two roommates from Colorado share a bedroom. Our apartment has all the necessities we need for the semester and we have plenty of space. Our landlord is very helpful and is easily accessible in case we ever need anything or have a question.
My apartment is a 15-20-minute walk to CAPA. My apartment is a little farther away from the CAPA center compared to other students, but I enjoy the quietness and beautiful views on my way to class. My favorite part about where I live is that I get to cross the Arno river when I walk to class. The sun hits perfectly on the Ponte Vecchio making it a perfect spot to take scenic pictures. My apartment is about a ten-minute walk from the Duomo and the city center making it a great location. I am able to live in a quieter neighborhood while also being able to get to the city center very quickly. My neighborhood also has two supermarkets, a post office, and a gym.
I really like my apartment, but there are some “challenges” I face living in Florence. In most Florentine apartments, there are no dryers and the washers are much smaller than the United States. I also do not have a dishwasher, but it has not been a problem. In general, most houses and apartments in Florence only keep the heat on for parts of the day because it is expensive and good for the environment. Sometimes it can be cold and hard to manage the temperature. Overall, there are differences about living here compared to the United States, but I am definitely getting adjusted and used to it.
Overall, I really enjoy where I live and exploring my new neighborhood. I feel so fortunate to be able to live in such a beautiful city. I look forward to the next couple months and to share my experiences along the way!