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The best of Venice
Written by: Petra Pokorná & Todd Shaw
In spite of this city's aquatic travails, the beauty of La Serenissima
(The Divine Republic) still shines through. From its legendary
canals to its spire-dotted skyline, Venice is one of the world's
most thoroughly unique destinations, where history is writ large
and an exotic spirit fills the air.
chief operating officer, Živnobanka
Favorite hotel: Albergo Cavalletto e Doge Orseolo
Piazza, Ponte del Cavalletto 1107, San Marco, Venice, tel.:
+39 041 520 0955.
It is not a luxury hotel, but you can expect very good service
there. It is located in a very nice little square (campiello),
just a few meters from San Marco square.
Favorite restaurant: Ristorante Do Forni San Marco 468, Venice,
tel.: +39 041 523 8880, www.doforni.it/cng/frame_ristorante.htm
Favorite night spot: Harry's Bar - Calle Vallaresso 1323, San
Marco, Venice, tel.: +39 041 528 5777, www.cipriani.com/cipriani/Locs/ven.htm
Favorite attractions: Everything in Venice is an attraction.
Best-kept secret: Torcello Island, www.tours-italy.com/venice/torcello_island.htm
Advice: Comfortable shoes, to be able to visit all hidden corners
of the town.
managing director, Quattro Services
Favorite hotels: Luna Hotel
Baglioni, tel.: +39 041 528 9840, San Marco 1243, www.baglionihotels.com
Bauer Il Palazzo, tel.: +39 041 520 7022, San Marco 1413/d, www.ilpalazzovenezia.com
Enoteca al Volto, Calle Cavalli 4081, San Marco, tel.: +39 041 522 8945
- closed on Sundays
Al Bottegon, Fondamenta Nani 992, Dorsoduro, tel.: +39 041 523 0034
- closed on Sunday afternoons
Osteria Vini da Pinto, Rialto Pescheria, San Polo, tel.: +39 041 522 4599
- closed on Mondays
Locanda Cipriani, Piazza Santa fosca 29, Torcello Island, tel.: +39 041 730150
Gatto Nero Via Giudecca Burano 88, Burano Island, tel.: +39 041 730120
Favorite attractions: The Festa del Redentore, which takes place annually in
July, is the most important religious festival. There are fireworks on the third
Saturday of the month, and the next day a regatta takes place in the San Marco
basin. Thousands of boats of every size are colorfully decorated. Forget the
Carnevale - for 400 years, this has been the Venetians' favorite festival!
Best-kept secret: A cruise (from one to six days) on the Eolo sailing yacht.
Even gourmet cruises are available!
Tel.: +39 042 977 7037 or www.cruisingvenice.com
sales & marketing director, Karlovarské minerální
Favorite hotels: Hotel Gritti na Canal Grande, Campo Santa
Maria del Giglio 2467, Venice, tel.: +39 041 794 611, gritti.hotelinvenice.com
Danieli, Riva Degli Schiavoni 4196, Venice, tel.: +39 041
522 6480 danieli.hotelinvenice.com
- they keep the courtyard in perfect condition, and the marmor
outdoor staircase from the 17th century was typical for patrician
Favorite restaurants: La Madonna, San Polo 594, Venice, tel.:
+39 041 522 3824 (closed on Wednesdays)
- typically Venezian menu offering excellent fresh fish
Le Carampane, San Polo 1911, Venice, tel.: +39 041 524 0165
- for traditional Venezian cusine
Favorite shop: Bastianello, Marzaria Due Aprile 5042, S.
Marco, Venice, tel.: +39 041 522 6751
Near the St. Bartolomeo square - fantastic jewelry - antique
and modern - items from ivory, silver, and gold that will
dazzle your eyes.
Favorite attractions: Cycle of St. George: a series of painting
by Vettore Carpaccia in the chapel of Scuola di San Giorgio
dei Greci, belonging to an association of Istrian sea captains.
On the top floor you can find the cultural hall.
Calle dei Furlani Castello 3259/a, Venice, tel.: +39 041
522 8828 www.invenicetoday.com/art-tour/scuole/giorgio.htm
Best-kept secret: Seldom used passage near Ospedale di San
Giovanni e Paolo, where you can find unbelievably beautiful
old buildings and a 15th century monastery. Or small local
bacari where one can drink great wine and eat seafood and
Location: Veneto, northeast Italy
Dialing Code: 39
Population: 70,000 (city); 180,000 (metropolitan
Ethnic Mix: Predominantly Italian, with Slovene-Italian
and Albanian minorities.
Religion: 98% Catholic, 2% other.
Time zone: GMT + 1 (GMT + 2 from last Sunday in March
to Saturday before last in October)
Electricity: 220 volts AC, 50 Hz; round two-pin are
Average January temp: 2° C (36° F)
Average July temp: 23.5° C (75° F)
Annual rainfall: 854 mm (34.2 inches)
· 1.0-liter bottle of mineral water: EUR 1,60
· 33-cl bottle of beer: EUR 2,10
· 36-exposure color film: EUR 5,20
· adult football ticket: EUR 16
· three-course meal with wine/beer: from EUR 25
1 Euro (EUR 1) = CAD 1,61; CZK 31,0; GBP 0,69;
(Currency conversion rates as of press time.)
Where on the web?
For further information, we suggest the following websites dedicated
www.timeout.com/travel/venice - simple and straightforward online
guidebook from the folks at Time Out.
www.bugbog.com/european_cities/venice_travel.html - not so easy
to read, but home to some interesting tips and photos. www.veniceworld.com - a helpful and attractive portal page for those seeking Venice
info, from hotels to weather.
www.magicaljourneys.com/Italy/italy-travel-travelguides-venice.html - this site offers suggestions for the best printed travel guides,
and links for where to buy them.
www.nbportal.com/travel-destinations/italy/venice/pod_dep-107468.html - a good site for booking a hotel and other pre-flight planning.
· The most famous event in Venice is the annual Carnevale, held
each winter during the ten days prior to Lent and finishing on
Shrove Tuesday. Performances, balls and pageants, with an ongoing
theme of elaborate costumes and masks, are held in the city's squares.
· On the first Sunday in September another major event, the Regata
Storica, is held on the Grand Canal and consists of a fine procession
of historic sailing craft and a highly competitive trial of strength
between the Venetian gondoliers.
· Tourism plays an essential role in the economic fortunes of
Venice, a former maritime power with the enormous mercantile and
trade success that went with it. Put simply, Venice would die without
its 15 million annual tourists, who literally keep the city afloat
with their money providing over 70% of the city's income and over
50% of local jobs.
· Ironically, this over-reliance on tourism,
coupled with the high cost of buying and maintaining property,
is driving young people,
who are needed to stimulate alternative growth, away from the
· The main economic activity in the heavily industrialized
areas on the mainland (Mestre and Porto Marghera) is chemical,
engineering, textiles and, in one throwback to the halcyon
days of the Venetian Republic, shipbuilding. Tourism, by extension,
has kept the traditional industries of glass blowing on the
island of Murano and of lace making on the nearby island of
· There are few major international companies based in Venice.
Big hotel groups, such as Starwood and Best Western, have a strong
presence in the city, as do fast-food outlets, such as McDonalds
and Pizza Hut. There are no major financial institutions, banks
or the like, as there is no real point in major players being based