Video Of The Day: Florence Time-Lapse

Semper Firenze

I came across this time-lapse video from a New Year’s outing in Florence, Italy, on Vimeo (user MattBen) today. It struck me immediately as dramatic, but also mesmerizing. The time-lapse starts off and ends with slow sounds and visuals. The video climaxes in the middle with chaotic and dissonant music paired with footage of people moving along the streets of Florence furiously. Time-lapses are something I like because, when done well, they present to us the image of a longer span of time in a place than a single snapshot can provide. With that we can view the changes that take place in a destination over the course of a few hours, a day, weeks, or months. If you know of any good time-lapse videos you’d like to share with us, please do so in the comments.

Photo Of The Day: Locks Of Love

Today’s Photo of the Day was taken on Paris‘ Pont des Arts bridge, where it is tradition to write your name and your lover’s on a padlock and attach it to the railing to symbolize your unbreakable bond. It’s a tradition popular all over the world, from Florence to Taiwan (check out Gadling’s gallery from Cologne, Germany. Over the years, many cities have tried to remove the locks or limit new additions, but true love prevails and it remains a fun way to leave a symbol of your beloved. Thanks to Flickr’s Luke Robinson for the photo, we hope some of that lovey doveyness followed you home from France!

Seen any sweet traditions on your travels? Add your photos to the Gadling Flickr pool for our Photo of the Day.

Gucci Museum opens in Florence

One of the world’s most well-known luxury fashion labels, Gucci, this week opened a museum in Florence. While we need very little reason to travel to Italy or to write about anything luxury, this museum seems worth a stop. The opening marks the brand’s 90th anniversary and incorporates both the leather goods and clothing that have made the brand so successful.

The three-level museum, opened to the public Wednesday, is housed inside the luxe 14th century Palazzo della Mercanzia.

Viewers will find handbags owned by Jackie Onassis and Sofia Loren in the basement Gucci Archivea permanent exhibit that houses clothing, accessories and photos from the brand’s history. Other notable items include a custom Cadillac Seville and gowns made for Hilary Swank and Naomi Watts.

Gucci’s parent company PPR also has similar museums for luxury brands Balenciaga and Salvatore Ferragamo.

[Image via Pursuitist]

New Florence App hits app store (and it’s free!)

Update! The app is now also available for Android devices.

Our old friend and partner-in-crime Leif Pettersen has been busy since his departure from Gadling in 2007. The wayward Lonely Planet author, travel guru and generally affable guy has been bombasting around the planet on various projects, but one in particular recently got our attention at Gadling Labs.

Turns out, Pettersen just finished putting the final touches on a new digital travel guide to Florence, the product of which is currently available in the app store for all iPhone, iPad and iVanity hardware. And best of all, it’s free for the next day. All that you have to do is scoot over to the site, click download and get your hands on the full product. In Leif’s words, “your review can be the payment.”

Here at Gadling Labs we’re itching to try out the app, but with our Android phones on a Linux operating system (in a Faraday-cage newsroom no less) it’s really difficult to jump into the river of mainstream app culture. Regretfully, our 8″ thick binder of printed AAA maps, hand written notes and excerpts from Herodotus will have to continue working as our guidebooks.

For those heading or planning to head to Florence with an iPhone, however, give Leif’s Florence guide a spin. For the cost, we’re sure it’s worth at least checking out.

[Flickr image via Arianna M]

Florence’s Hotel L’Orologio – a watch-lover’s haven

Hotels that literally interpret a theme can be kitschy, fun, cool, or just plain overdone. It’s rare they walk the fine line of falling squarely into the luxury category. But, from what we’ve seen, Florence‘s Hotel L’Orologio, or Hotel L’O, for short, fits the bill. Part of the boutique Whythebest collection in Italy, the brand’s founder, Sandro Fratini, designed the property around his love of watches, hence the L’Orologio name. Fratini has more than 2,000 watches in his personal collection.

The hotel has a masculine feel, using materials like leather, parchment, bronze and wood along with the colors and aroma of tobacco to help convey a total sensory experience. Each floor of the hotel is dedicated to a specific watch brand – Rolex, Vacheron-Constantin and Patek Philippe. All of the 54 rooms are watch-inspired, with details including sinks knobs that evoke the winding crowns of a well-known watchmaker. Baths are done in marble and mahogany and all of the rooms include dark, masculine decor.

While we haven’t visited this property personally, we’re fascinated by the images … check them out!