I just got back from a trip to Florence and Pisa to celebrate our anniversary. I will post a few photos in a bit (especially for Rocaille) but just a word quickly about the Santa Maria Novella pharmacy. I bought some soap there. Soap - not very exciting you might say, but I beg to differ. Ever since my French penpal arrived one summer, armed with gifts for all the family as usual and gave my Ma a bar of Chanel No.5 scented soap I've appreciated the small luxury a decent bar of soap can give you. Our bathroom smelled of Chanel no.5 until that poor little bar of soap was worn down to nothing.
So while in Florence, I dragged Mr C to the Santa Maria Novella pharmacy - or the Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella to give it its full title. If you've been to Florence and you're at all interested in perfume etc then you'll probably have been as it's world famous.
It's well over 400 years old, and other than the arrival of electricity, not much as changed - it's quite simply one of the most beautiful shops you'll ever go in. Room after room of soap, perfume, pot pourri, potions, lotions, elixirs and more - many are made to the same formula they've been using for hundreds of years. Just look how beautiful is it - a sea of marble, wood and paintings - a feast for the eyes:
Bit different from Boots or Duane Reade eh?
I showed immense restraint, and bought only 3 soaps - one for us and one for each mother. Have you seen a more beautifull packaged soap before?
I've been sniffing it since we got back. I could hardly bear to open and start using it....until I discovered there's a branch here in London. So re-stocking won't require a return trip to Florene. What a shame