THE CALL OF ART
You wake up wanting nothing more than to see the Uffizi, Michelangelo's David, the Ponte Vecchio and the Medici palazzos. What can you do but get on your private jet and fly off to Florence? Just ask Michael Jordan, the greatest basketball player of all time and icon of the Chicago Bulls, who in 2019 landed at Peretola Airport and barely stopped to draw breath before he was in the Uffizi, where Botticelli's Venus was patiently waiting for him.
In fact, it's a long list of stars who got a selfie that year with Eike Schmidt, the Uffizi Director, but two that we have to namecheck are our gladiator Russell Crowe - who, needless to say, was awestruck by the Roman artworks - and the world's most famous gigolo, Richard Gere, who had come to Florence to receive the keys to the city from Mayor Nardella, in recognition of his work for human rights.
Then Álvaro Morte and Pedro Alonso, respectively The Professor and Berlin in Money Heist, took advantage of a few days off in Florence to go and have a look at the Uffizi, joking with Schmidt about a potential heist in future. Gwyneth Paltrow, of Sliding Doors fame, also followed suit in 2019 and arrived in Florence to savour the art, gelato, Chianti bistecche and much more besides.
Last but not least, we really should jump to 2020 and mention Chiara Ferragni's headline-making visit to the Uffizi. The pioneer of Italian influencers, followed by tens of millions across the globe, is she really so different from the Hollywood divas?