MageTestFest 2 is held at the venue of the Odeon Cinema (or Teatro Odeon), right in the middle of the old city of Florence. It is magical. It is just what you expect from a Italian renaissance theatre. The building block breathes a classical atmosphere, but it will be transformed - during MageTestFest - into ... well, something else. You'll love it.
You have to understand that Italians themselves avoid Florence: There are too many tourists. However, March 2019 is still the off-season and it will show you a city that still belongs to the Italians: Classical buildings, relaxed atmosphere, people making dramatic gestures with their hands.
If you are coming, we recommend you stay at least 1 day extra (in the weekend?) to visit the following highlights:
The Odeon Theatre has already existed for centuries. It was built in 1457, serving as a palace, sold to the city of Florence in the 19th century, then sold again to house a hotel, then sold again to serve as a cinema. The Odeon was one of the first movie theaters in Italy and still runs movies regularly. It also hosts legendary shows like MageTestFest. Or is it a one-time only thing?Teatro Odeon, Piazza degli Strozzi, 50123 Firenze
After the main conference of March 7th, we will have a great after party: No loud music, no strippers. But friendly people, some gin and a piano. Relax, chat with new friends, debate on what Vinai said, pray to Cthulhu and enjoy your evening. The party takes place at the Ostello Tasso, a 15 minute scroll from the main venue.Ostello Tasso, Via Villani 15, 50124 Firenze
While the Odeon is the place to be at the main event day (March 7th), the workshops and the hackathon will be organized at a different place at TSH (The Student Hotel), still at walking distance of the old center. You can also take a tram from the Central Station, it is only 1 stop.The Student Hotel, Viale Spartaco Lavagnini 70, 50129
It will not be hard to find accomodation in Florence. In the old center, there are plenty of hotels. The The Student Hotel (TSH) might be one of the popular spots, because the workshops and hackathon are also held in this location. The Tasso Hostel is also a nice option. Sites like Booking.com will help you find other good deals more in the old center.
The further you go outside from the center, the cheaper it becomes. One suggestion is to not stay in the city at all, but somewhere outside and then make your way into the city by train or bus. We are ourselves staying in a chalet on the Camping Firenze, taking the bus or bicycle into town (5km).
If you decide to come by car, realize that it is impossible to park your car within the historical center or near to it. Do not drive your car into the city. Also, book your accomodation in advance.
MageTestFest is being held right at the center of Florence. Don't attempt to reach this venue by car. Instead, park your car outside of the city and either walk or take public transport. The central station is a great transport hub for this: Trains regularly arrive here and the old town is easily reached by foot.
Flying to Florence can be expensive as well at times. You might consider flying into Bologna or another alternative airport and then take public transport to the city.
If you can, you could try to get around in Florence on a bicycle: We of Yireo are Dutch, so this is our take. Bonus is that it scares the shit out of tourists, if you're suddenly flying by on a bike.