Less Seen Treasures in Florence: Villa La Petraia

Only a short bus ride away from the center of Florence is located what is considered one of the most beautiful of the Medici Villas: Villa La Petraia. The Medici Family, besides their lavish palace in the city, had several leisure houses throughout the countryside. The fist thing one may appreciate in Villa La Petraia is the owner’s desire for the connection between the outside gardens and the main building, an integral part of architecture that the Medici constructions where known for.


This villa was particularly owned by Cardinal Ferdinando, son of Cosimo I de Medici, who after his acquisition made significant changes to the building and the surroundings, giving it the princely residence appearance that it has today. The inside has several rooms with decorations that show more recent interventions, such as intricate tapestries and furniture from the 17th century.


This mixture of countryside, architecture, and elegant design lets you savor Villa La Petraia like a fine wine. The Villa also now houses the paintings that Giusto Utens created depicting the Medici Villas.

Fun fact: The Medici Villas were also part of a control system that the great duchy had over the region. This is probably the reason why the center of Florence can be seen from the southern end of the garden.

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