What lies beneath is always fascinating, be it in persons, places, or things. In Florence, one of the most interesting places lying underneath the city is La Società Canottieri, a rowing club with an august past.
Upon entering the club, you know it’s something special, just based upon the size of the escutcheon. Check it out, it’s taller than the average doorway!
Looking upward from the banks of the club’s riverside location. That’s the Uffizi you see grandly sitting above.
I’ve walked along this section of the Lungarno hundreds, if not thousands, of times, and always wished I could enter this subterranean location, to see what’s actually going on in the space. This week, I finally got my chance.
Spilling out onto the banks of the Arno River, the rowing club is situated beneath the courtyard and structure of the Uffizi.
The view across the Arno from the club.
Up close and personal, the club’s view of the Ponte Vecchio. This view only becomes more spectacular as late afternoon shifts to twilight and evening.
The interior of the club begins with a social space, with displays of hundreds of victory cups:
Most interesting of all is how the space stretches into a deep cavern under the city in a fairly shallow and narrow way. Hundreds of boats and accessories are housed here, and two gyms provide equipment for rowers to train and keep fit.