Everything you need to know about housing.

ISI Florence Housing Info

At ISI Florence, students are housed in apartments located throughout the city center. The apartments are shared with other ISI Florence students, ensuring a close-knit community among peers. The apartments are fully furnished and come equipped with necessary living amenities, fostering a comfortable and conducive living environment for study and relaxation.

Students living in these shared apartments experience a blend of communal living and independence. Sharing space with fellow ISI Florence students allows for a supportive and collaborative environment, where students can share their experiences and learn from each other.

The apartments are strategically located to ensure that students can easily walk to the ISI Florence facilities. While the exact walking distance to the Institute’s facilities can vary depending on the specific location of each apartment, Florence is a relatively compact city. Most apartments are likely within a 20 to 35-minute walking distance from the Institute’s palazzi. This proximity allows students to comfortably walk to their classes and also enjoy the rich cultural and historic elements of Florence. There are public transportation options as well, such as buses, rent-by-the-minute bicycles or scooters to facilitate easy movement throughout the city.

Housing FAQs

Due to the high demand for housing in Florence – a top study-abroad destination and tourist hotspot – securing centrally-located apartments requires careful selection. Our housing team diligently inspects each apartment to meet ISI Florence’s standards. Occasionally, we make last-minute repairs or adjustments to ensure the best living experience, which may delay finalizing assignments until your arrival.

Rest assured, if you’ve mutually requested specific roommates on your housing application and they’ve reciprocated the request, we will honor it. Please ensure that both you and your desired roommates indicate each other’s names on your respective forms. You may nominate up to two individuals to be your roommates on your housing application.

To request a single room due to medical reasons:

  1. Indicate your need for a single room on your housing application.
  2. Have your home university advisor send official documentation directly to the admissions office. This can be done via:

Make sure this request, along with the official documentation, is submitted no later than 45 days before the start of your semester.

If you’ve requested a single room, our admissions team will reach out to you to detail the necessary documentation and inform you of your semester’s submission deadline. Failure to submit the required documents by this deadline means you will not be further considered for a single room allocation, nor will you receive additional communication on this matter. Should you meet the documentation requirements, our housing team will update you on the status of your single-room request—whether confirmed or denied—after housing assignments are complete.

Maintaining regular email checks is crucial throughout your pre-departure preparations and during your study abroad period to ensure you don’t miss any critical updates from us. For smoother communication, we recommend adding [email protected] to your email contacts.

Please note: letters from a medical professional should first be sent to your home university for official evaluation.

Yes. If you submit all necessary documentation and receive confirmation of placement in a single room, an added cost will apply.
Please contact our admissions team or your study abroad office for details.

Important note: Single rooms cannot be paid for on request. Due to various characteristics of the housing market in Florence, single rooms are extraordinarily limited and only available to students with a documented need.

To ensure that we can accommodate your specific housing needs, you must provide detailed information within your housing application. Please do this when you first submit your application and no later than 45 days before your scheduled arrival date.

Considerations for Special Housing Needs:

  • Religious Practices: If you have housing preferences due to religious practices, please specify them clearly.
  • Gender Inclusivity: If you are open to gender-inclusive housing options, make a note in the designated area of your application.
  • Health Concerns and Medical Exemptions: For any needs related to health concerns or medical conditions, a note or certificate from your physician is required. This documentation must be sent directly from your physician to the admissions office. Please use the following contact methods:Please note that we cannot accept medical documents that you send on your own or any submissions made after the 45-day deadline.

Please remember that indicating a preference for gender-inclusive housing does not guarantee placement in co-ed accommodations, but it helps us to better meet your needs and the needs of others.

Our housing team carefully matches students with apartments in Florence, taking into account the unique character of each neighborhood and the comprehensive profiles of students to meet their needs effectively. Priority is given to health and specific needs, along with requests for certain roommates, due to the intricate nature of the allocation process.

Given the need for flexibility and the detailed considerations involved, requesting a specific neighborhood or type of apartment is not possible. Instead, we urge students to embrace the diverse experiences Florence offers by visiting friends in different areas across the city.

To familiarize yourself with the various Florentine neighborhoods, we recommend watching the video below.

ISI Florence student apartments are fully furnished and equipped with the following living amenities:

  • Bed linens, pillows, and blankets
  • Basic cooking utensils, pots & pans, cutlery, plates, cups, glasses
  • Stove and oven (full, microwave, or toaster oven)
  • Refrigerator
  • Fans
  • Washing machine (located either in the apartment or in the laundry room of the building)
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Drying racks
  • Wi-Fi
  • Mop, bucket, brush, dustpan

Items Not Included:

  • Air conditioning
  • Dryer
  • Dishwasher
  • Microwave
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • TV
  • Hair dryer and/or curling iron
  • Bath towels
  • Cleaning supplies and detergents
  • Toilet paper and kitchen roll
  • Food and spices

Please Note: While the listed amenities are standard, some apartments may have additional items left by previous tenants or provided by the landlord. These are not guaranteed.
Houses and appliances in Italy are generally smaller compared to those typically found in US apartments. Expect to encounter significant differences in the sizes of ovens and refrigerators. Additionally, it’s common not to have a separate dining area, but rather a table within the kitchen for eating your meals.

Starting Fall 2024, ISI Florence will no longer offer airport pick-up at the Florence airport. Instead, we will provide arrival assistance. This gives you more flexibility in choosing which airport you’ll fly to in Italy.

From Florence Airport on Arrival Day:

  1. Collect your luggage at the baggage claim.
  2. Proceed to the arrivals exit where you will find indications for a taxi or a tram to the center. Tram tickets can be purchased from the machine on the platform or else inside the tram using a credit card and “tapping” the payment reader located throughout the tram.* If you take the tram, you can get off at the train station (Alemanni stop) or the last stop at Piazza Unità. Tram tickets cost around €1.70 and taxis are around €25/30.
  3. You can give the taxi driver the address of the central meeting point provided in your email from the ISI Abroad admissions staff where ISI Staff will be to assist you.
  4. There, staff will arrange for your transfer via minivan or taxi to your apartment.
  5. At the apartment, you’ll be checked in by another staff member and given an introduction to your new home.

*Please note that pickpockets often operate on the tram, especially crowded ones. Keep your valuables safely on you.

If Your Luggage Is Lost at the Airport:

  1. Do not exit the baggage claim area.
  2. Report to the lost-and-found window inside the baggage claim area.
  3. Complete a lost-and-found form with Palazzo Rucellai’s address (Via della Vigna Nuova, 18 – 50123 Firenze).
  4. Contact ISI Florence to let them know about your wait to make a claim using the emergency number provided.
  5. No worries, our staff will wait for you at the central meeting point even if you surpass the established arrival time due to this inconvenience.

Arriving by Train or Other Transport on Arrival Day:

  1. Make your way to the central location provided by admissions.
  2. ISI Florence staff will meet you and guide you to a minivan or taxi.
  3. You’ll be taken directly to your apartment for check-in.

For any issues or if arriving outside the pre-established times, use the emergency contact information provided to coordinate your check-in.

Due to the limited size of Florence airport and the volume of arrivals, we organize transfers efficiently by first gathering students at a central location. This allows us to:

  1. Organize students at a centralized location arriving from the airport or train station.
  2. Coordinate transportation to apartments with minivans or taxis that can navigate the smaller streets of the historic center.
  3. Align arrival times with our on-site staff who are prepared to welcome you at your apartment.

This approach, while it may seem complex, is designed to provide a structured and organized process, ensure that all students are accounted for, and guarantee that each student receives personal attention and arrives at their new home without any issues.

Each ISI Florence apartment is situated in neighborhoods that have no shortage of shops, cafes, restaurants, and other culinary options. Upon arrival, you’ll receive a welcome folder tailored to your specific location. This folder includes a map highlighting the nearest supermarkets and a Housing Guide containing details on local food shops and other useful information.

For your grocery needs, you’ll find a variety of supermarkets such as Carrefour, Conad, Coop, and Sapori & Dintorni. For a more local experience, explore the family-owned gastronomia shops that offer basic household supplies and a deli counter with meats, cheeses, and ready-made meals or adventure to one of Florence’s main covered food markets at Mercato Centrale or Mercato Sant’Ambrosio.

Additionally, the ISI Florence App provides a comprehensive directory of food shops, restaurants, and cafes in its Map section. You can download the app here: ISI Florence App, to discover all the various shops, cafes, and restaurants Florence has to offer, many with ISI Florence student discounts.

At ISI Florence, we aim to provide authentic Italian living experiences. Each student is housed in unique apartments scattered throughout the historic center, surrounded by local Italian residents. This approach means that no two apartments are identical, yet all are equipped with the essential living amenities. By choosing apartments over dormitories, we are able to offer accommodations that reflect the diversity of the city and are within the heart of Italian culture, rather than in remote, uniform dormitory settings.

Please note: The design, appearance, and features of apartments in Italy reflect local cultural norms and may vary from what is traditionally expected in American homes.

To make your apartment feel like home and more personalized, consider:

1. Decorating Your Space:

  • Place picture frames with photos of loved ones and pets.
  • Add cozy items such as throw rugs and plants*.
  • Use other decorative items to enhance the ambiance.

You can find stores for home goods via the ISI Florence app or by asking a Student Services staff member.

2. Cooking Familiar Foods:

  • Prepare your favorite meals.
  • Host dinners for roommates or classmates.
  • Participate in group cooking classes offered by Student Services to learn Italian recipes.

3. Make yourself a playlist of your favorite music.

Decoration Guidelines:

  • Avoid damaging walls; use BlueTack (or similar adhesives) instead of nails, tacks, or tape.
  • You’ll be accountable for any damage to the apartment walls.

*Plant Consideration:

  • If you opt for live plants, plan for their care after your departure.
  • If you cannot ensure someone will take over their care, choose artificial plants instead.

ISI Florence provides housing exclusively for students enrolled in its academic programs. Your friend is welcome to visit you in your apartment for dinner or study sessions but must adhere to ISI Florence’s policy which prohibits overnight stays. Consequently, your friend cannot be accommodated in ISI Florence housing.

Please note: The details and procedures outlined in the above FAQs are subject to modification. Any changes will be promptly communicated to the students before their departure.

Welcome to Florence!