Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele is, of course, a lover of all things vintage, and it was during his search for antiques in Florence more than a decade ago that he first discovered Giardino Torrigiani, a garden oasis in the centre of the Tuscan capital. Giardino Torrigiani is expansive—at 17 acres, it is said to be the largest privately owned city garden in Europe. Nevertheless, it remains “hidden” in every sense of the term, absent from most tourist literature and surrounded by walls and iron gates, with visits by appointment only. It’s not hard to understand Michele’s attraction: What’s inside is a breathtakingly eclectic—and idiosyncratic—mix of vegetation and styles. A lush botanical garden since the 16th century, Giardino Torrigiani was redeveloped in the 1800s under the direction of Marquis Pietro Torrigiani, who commissioned architect Luigi de Cambray Digny to reimagine the property in a more romantic, English mode. Giardino Torrigiani continues to be owned and operated by two branches of the Torrigiani family, and is filled with oaks, cypresses, and magnolias, as well as ancient cedars and rare Fagus Tricolor Beech trees. The formal gardens and nd nurseries are still botanically diverse,se, with flowering plants, evergreens, and tropical species from around the world.
Piet and Anja Oudolf’s private garden, Hummelo in the Netherlands
Gucci Spring/ Summer ’16 P;R
A romantic park in the heart of Florence