From Carolina Bonaparte to The Westin
A wealth of historical memories (seven centuries of Florentine history) is associated with the area on which stands the building thatis now The Westin Excelsior.
In the 13th century, the religious order of Umiliati settled here on what was then marshland, starting to build in 1251 the church dedicated to the Virgin Mary and All Saints.
From the 1427 the building was owned before by the Boccaccio family then by the Gondi, one of the most powerful institutions in the Renaissance Florence.
The house in 1833 was bought by Carolina Bonaparte, sister of the great Napoleon and wife of Gioacchino Murat, the former king of Naples.
In 1884 the building was bought by Anton Karl Autenrieth whose heirs sold it on 1924 to the Swiss hotelier Gerardo Kraft.
Finally, in 1912, Mr. Gerardo Kraft obtained the property of the two contiguous hotels, "La Ville" and "Italie". In 1925 both hotels were closed down for important works of renovations. In 1997 the Westin Excelsior has entered a new phase in its history when the most recent restoration and renovation was completed.