Venice Travel Guide
It's time for a walk down memory lane with a HotelChatter flashback!
We've chronicled the births (and deaths) of a lot of hotels in our 10 years of reporting on the hotel scene. (Yes, 10 years. We know. We can't even.) But in looking through the archives, we found this snapshot of the grafitti mural by tattoo artist, Norm, going up at the funky fresh Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach, Calif., during its first days open.
Kinda cool considering that the mural today is so much a part of the identity of the Erwin. Why, it's all over their Facebook page. Just so you can see, here's what the finished piece looks like today.
And interestingly, the Ink & Stay package that Erwin offered when they initially opened back in 2009 is still available. If you've booked it, we wanna know what sort of tatt you got so send us your story!
[Photos: HotelChatter and Hotel Erwin]
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Here's a new reason to love one of Venice's most lovable hotels, the Hotel Cipriani. Next month, guests can sign up to have "Dinner In the Sky," a one-off experience that literally involves a 22-seat dining table being raised 164 feet in the air.
According to The Daily Mail:
"A total of 22 guests can be seated around the table, which will be suspended over the swimming pool of the hotel, located on the island of Giudecca.
Thrill-seekers will have the choice of a one-hour three-course meal prepared by the hotel's chefs or a 30-minute aperitif, during which they can drink in views that stretch to St Mark's Square on the opposite side of the lagoon."
We'd probably opt for the 30-minute aperitif, since we're almost positive the dizzying height would make us lose our appetite. Then again, we'd also have to watch how much we drank. Wouldn't want to have any bathroom emergencies at that kind of altitude!
According to the Daily Mail, the platform can be rotated 180º, offering each guest at the table a panoramic view of Venice.
If this idea sounds more romantic to you than terrifying, then plan on booking a seat at the table (50 EUR per person for the aperitif; 250 pp for dinner) for the event, which takes place June 19-23.
[Photo: Daily Mail]
The 266-room JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa is set to open on a private island located in the Venice lagoon in 2014. This will be Marriott’s first hotel in Italy under the luxury JW moniker.
The hotel is just a short boat ride from the historic heart of the city, St Mark’s Square. There’ll be an array of restaurants and bars, of course, a health club and spa, and pools galore--one outdoors, one indoors, and one on the roof.
We think the renderings (more after the jump!) look impressive, with a Mediterranean vibe thing goin’ on–-all white and seafoam green--right in keeping with the whole “private island” business.
If you're familiar with Aman Resorts at all, it'll be no surprise that Aman Canal Grande will be an extravagantly luxurious affair, and with only 24 suites, an exclusive one as well. Set in the 16th century Palazzo Papadopoli, the hotel will be midway between the Rialto and Accademia Bridges in the San Polo district.
We’ve been hearing it forever—Venice is sinking. Well, right now it certainly is…wet. The city is enduring the Acqua Alta, aka the period when higher than normal water levels rise over the city, causing the lagoon's water to overflow over the canals and flood the walkways.
When it does happen, it's usually between the months of October through December when high tides affect Venice thanks to strong southerly winds and heavy rain. The resulting rising waters causes more than half of the city's low-lying cafes, shops and hotels to become a water-logged. This year, it has brought the sixth-highest tide in 150 years.
We’ve visited Venice in October and managed to dodge the Aqua Alta, but we packed a pair of rainboots just in case the weather gods decided to bring the rain and the funk (the canals, that act like sewer systems, can get quite pungent).
So what does this mean for people already in Italy, or who've made plans to visit Venice soon?
Roses are red, violets are blue. Kimye invaded Venice, here's a photo for you!
After just one month, it seems Kim Kardashian is already bored of her temporary Miami digs. The jetsetting reality star was whisked off to Europe over the weekend by boyfriend Kanye West to celebrate her 32nd birthday.
The pair—photographed nearly every step of the way—made their way around Venice on Sunday, with Kardashian tweeting at one point: "Italy is so beautiful! Best birthday ever!!!"
Well, all we have to say is, it's easy to have that kind of reaction when you're staying in a place like the Hotel Cipriani, where the Daily Mail reports they crashed. Located on Giudecca Island, rooms at the hotel start at around $1,300/night, though we're guessing Kimye splashed out on a suite. You know, to accommodate the camera crews.
Getting surfers and skateboarders to stay at the Hotel Erwin in Venice, Calif. has never been a tough sell for the hotel, thanks to its beachfront location along the Venice Boardwalk, its spunky style (a wall of grafitti art greets guests upon their arrival) and a killer rooftop scene like no other on the beach.
But now there's a whole new way for skaters to go all out at the hotel--The Red Bull Dogtown Suite.
For $1,500 a night, guests can stay in this 750-sq.ft. suite decked out with surf and skateboard decor, a 52" TV, a big round bed and a giant two-person tub. The suite also has a large private balcony with killer ocean views and even a custom DJ turntable should guests want to spin some tunes. And of course, it's stocked with cans of Red Bull.
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In the ever-expanding universe of Twitter, there is one particular trend @HotelChatter happens to quite enjoy: candid hotel photos. These Twitpics range from stunning views to anti-views to celebrity tomfoolery and everything in between. And we can't get enough of 'em! Every Monday, we feature one "Twitpic of the Week" to commemorate our favorite hotel-themed snapshot. Got a favorite of your own? Want to show off your sweet suite? Send it in!
This week, we're dreaming of tiny arched bridges and cups of espresso by Piazza San Marco. Venice, seen here from the Hotel Cipriani, may be an over-exposed tourist trap, but she's also a classic.
Everyone's buzzing about The Tourist, the soon-to-open flick starring Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp. People are wondering if the pair will have some good on-camera chemistry and whether Jolie will kick some ass in the movie. We were dying to find out about the hotel that provided the setting for some of the film, Hotel Danieli in Venice.
In The Tourist, Elise (Jolie) meets Frank (Depp) aboard a Paris train bound to Venice and sparks fly. They hop on a water taxi to get to the island and then check into the luxe legendary hotel.
So here's a funny story: Apparently Orient-Express Hotels, which owns the famous Hotel Cipriani in Venice, just won around 7.5 Million GBP ($11.4 million) in a lawsuit they brought against Cipriani restaurants.
The terms are a bit confusing, since one would assume that the Hotel Cipriani was associated with the similarly well-known chain of Harry Cipriani's Bars and ritzy Cipriani restaurants in locations like New York, London and Hong Kong. But that's not the case. The Hotel Cipriani sued the Cipriani restaurants for the obvious: using the Cipriani name.
The brief press release on the court decision also mentions that the company behind the Cipriani restaurants has had their worldwide assets frozen. That's a huge dealare we on the verge of either a major Cipriano re-naming and re-branding, or will the restaurant company come down altogether? Of course the Venice hotel will continue to exist, rolling in their winnings.
[Photo: Hotel Cipriani]
Last month, we told you about the opening of Hash at JDV’s Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach. Now that we’ve had a chance to go in for a meal there, we wanted to let you in on all the delish menu items you can expect to help stave off the munchies.
True to its name, the restaurant serves up four different kinds of hash for breakfast (including one daily special like the one with apples and house-smoked turkey bacon) from Monday-Friday 7:00am-11:00am, and Saturday-Sunday 8:00am-1:00pm. You can also get your standard egg and pancake dishes along with some house specialties like the artery-clogging "Chicken Fried Steak ’n Eggs ’n Biscuits" ($13.95), or the colorful “Green Eggs & Ham" smothered in tomatillo salsa ($10.95).
It's no one-cent weekend, but this travel package, which includes stays in both Tuscany and Venice, is one of the most reasonable, all-inclusive deals we've seen in a while. We concede that the base price of $799 (airfare included) is slightly unbelievable—and, if you get into the nitty-gritty fine print, it truly is, depending on where you're flying from and when you travel. Yet it's still a solid deal, and there are ways to stay within a bargain basement range if you're willing to be a little flexible (and isn't that the caveat of similar deals, anyway?).