The World Road Cycling Championships will be held in Tuscany from 21 to 29 September, attracting the cycling elite to Florence. For the occasion, Rocco Forte’s Hotel Savoy has teamed up with the Italian bike company De Rosa to offer their guests the chance to follow in the footsteps of the pros and experience the championship course first hand. Kitted out with a De Rosa bike, cycling enthusiasts will be able to sample a challenging 122-kilometer stretch of the course during the opening weekend of the event. (Below and title photo, bikes by De Rosa, photos courtesy of makzone73 / Marcello/flickr.com
As part of the experience, riders will be fully kitted out with a De Rosa bike, set up specifically to their measurements. The company has been producing some of the finest examples of hand-built bike frames from their Milan workshop since 1953 and have supplied numerous pros over the years, including one of cycling’s greatest stars, Eddy Merckx, who went on to win nearly all major European races including the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia, Milan-San Remo and of course, the World Championship on De Rosa bikes.
With the participants fully briefed during their ‘Riders Dinner’ at Hotel Savoy, the next morning they will head to Lucca by executive coach from where the cycling tour commences. They will then follow the full 106-kilometre Championship course back to Florence and also take on the 16-kilometre loop of the Florence-Fiesole-Florence part of the course. Those who still have the legs the next day can take part in another 100 kilometre tour through the scenic Chianti region, before returning to Florence to soak up the Championship atmosphere. Throughout their stay, nutrition will be overseen by Italian chef Fulvio Pierangelini, who will be making specially-formulated energizing meals to fuel the rides. (Below, Executive Suite at Hotel Savoy, Florence)
Available from 20 to 22 September, the Cycling Experience at Hotel Savoy starts from € 767 per night per person and includes:
• Two nights’ accommodation in an Executive Room, inclusive of the cyclists’ breakfasts and optional late check-out
• 122km cycling tour of the Championship Course and 100km cycling tour of the Chianti Region
• Use of a top of the range De Rosa bike throughout the two days, technical assistance and tour support
• Cycling outfit (jersey and bib) by PISSEI and energy bars by Powerbar
• A welcome reception, one ‘Riders Dinner’ and one ‘Riders Lunch’
Below, the Lobby at Hotel Savoy, Florence
For anyone accompanying the cyclists and would like a calmer cycling experience, Hotel Savoy has chic urban city bikes available to guests. The hotel will also arrange a guided visit to the beautiful Renaissance gem, Palazzo Medici Riccardi. (Below, view from the Suite Repubblica bedroom at Hotel Savoy).