The Uffizi in Florence is one of the best known museums in the world and one with the longest tradition. This Renaissance palace was erected in the mid-16th century by the architect Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574) to create offices (hence "Uffizi") for the city state under Cosimo I. de Medici. But from earliest times, the patrons and collectors of the Medici family started exhibiting their finest pieces of art in the rooms on the top floor. Connected by a covered walk, these thus gave today’s "Gallery" its double meaning.
The collection housed in the Uffizi includes world-famous masterpieces, both paintings and sculptures, from the Antiquity to the 18th century. The focal point are paintings from the Italian Renaissance and the Baroque age. These are complemented by the surrounding architecture lavishly adorned with ornaments and frescoes.