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Another (sorry) "Where do I stay in Venice?" thread

Another (sorry) "Where do I stay in Venice?" thread

Old Jan 10, 17, 10:41 am
  #1  
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Another (sorry) "Where do I stay in Venice?" thread

Hello,

This is another one of the "where should I stay in Venice?" questions. I've read every thread I can find on FT as well as other sources (even TripAdvisor, but I've used that mainly for photos and not so much for the reviews), and have narrowed the options down to 6. All appear to be available for our dates and all are more-or-less the same price. Before I ask for advice about any of these properties, here is some background information.

- two travelers
- third trip to Venice and no desire to stay in the heart of the tourist areas
- prior visits were at the Europa & Regina but don't want to stay at a chain hotel unless there are no other viable options
- will be there 5 nights in early June
- primary purpose of the visit is to explore the areas of Venice we might not have found before: off-the-beaten path areas, where Venetians live and tour boat people won't likely be found, and offering good photo opportunities of the local area and people (and hopefully not having to dodge people with selfie sticks)
- ready access to vaporetto stop is a plus
- on the final morning have a very early departure from VCE, so will need a location readily accessible to a water taxi
- prefer a real neighborhood near restaurants that don't cater to tourists/serve frozen food
- canal view/terrace/outdoor space is a plus

So here's what I've found so far that appears to be available that seems to meet many or most of those criteria:

Ca' Carmini (Dorsoduro) near Scuola Grande dei Carmini/Campo Sta Margherita
Ca' dell'Artista (Dorsoduro), next door to Church of Eremite
Ca' Della Bottega (Dorsoduro), also near Campo Sta Margherita/Campo Carmini
Hotel Bisanzio (Castello)
Hotel Giorgione (Cannaregio)
Boscolo Venezia (only chain hotel in the list)

Does anyone have any thoughts about any of the above or how they do (or don't) fit into what we're looking for? The first three are part of Views of Venice and looking at their web site I've found several "reviews" that are obviously fake/cut-and-paste, but I've seen others on FT say good things about VoV.

Thanks to anyone who can offer any insight!
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Old Jan 10, 17, 11:33 am
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For the past two years I have stayed at Ai Cavallieri. It is a 4 star hotel in the Castello Sestiere. It is a very quiet location near the Campo Santa Maria Formosa and Campo Santa Marina. The hotel has a water landing and it is a very convenient water taxi ride to the airport. Last month we had to leave our hotel at 0430 for our 0620 fight to CDG.
The hotel is beautifully maintained and has a warm, welcoming staff. I find the location to be extremely convenient to any part of Venice. You will definitely not encounter hordes of tourists with selfie sticks.
I do not recommend Boscolo. I stayed there several years ago and the rooms are very hit and miss and quirky. I believe it is now a part of the Marriott Autograph collection. It is, however , in a good location.
I have stayed at Hotel Ai Mori D'Oriente several times. It is just in front of the Boscolo in Canareggio. I am very fond of this area. Only drawback is that you will find yourselves walking the dreadful Strada Nova many times.
The only time I have stayed in Dorsidoro is when I rented an apartment for 2 weeks. Very nice area. My preference is still for Ai Cavallieri in Castello.
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Old Jan 10, 17, 12:52 pm
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Thank you. I'm basically looking to avoid the Boscolo. Ai Cavallieri looks beautiful but for our dates prices are about 50% higher than the others on my list. Not a dealbreaker, but something else to add to the mix. Thanks!
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Old Jan 10, 17, 1:28 pm
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There is no need to be sorry for posting a specific question, asking for feedback on the excellent groundwork you did, and the background you provided.
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Old Jan 10, 17, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by FormerLurker View Post
Thank you. I'm basically looking to avoid the Boscolo. Ai Cavallieri looks beautiful but for our dates prices are about 50% higher than the others on my list. Not a dealbreaker, but something else to add to the mix. Thanks!
A friend was able to get a better rate by contacting the hotel directly via email as opposed to booking via website. Worth a try. Good luck
I should add that I know other people who receive more favorable rates when contacting hotel directly. (Not only this specific hotel).

Last edited by obscure2k; Jan 10, 17 at 5:12 pm
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Old Jan 10, 17, 5:19 pm
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I would suggest the Hotel Palazzo Stern in Dorsodoro if it is within you budget. Very convenient with a boat stop right outside the hotel. Beautiful grand canal front hotel convenient to everything but not as touristy as Dorsodoro's neighborhoods are off the beaten track and are true Venetian neighborhoods. We stayed for a couple of days last year and enjoyed it much better than the touristy areas we stayed on previous trips. Hope this helps.
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Old Jan 11, 17, 1:38 pm
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Thank you. The Palazzo Stern is also about 50% higher than the others on my list for similar room types, so I'll have to do some more research to see whether the additional ~$1,300 or so seems to be worth it.
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Old Jan 11, 17, 10:47 pm
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Originally Posted by FormerLurker View Post
Hello,

This is another one of the "where should I stay in Venice?" questions. I've read every thread I can find on FT as well as other sources (even TripAdvisor, but I've used that mainly for photos and not so much for the reviews), and have narrowed the options down to 6. All appear to be available for our dates and all are more-or-less the same price. Before I ask for advice about any of these properties, here is some background information.

- two travelers
- third trip to Venice and no desire to stay in the heart of the tourist areas
- prior visits were at the Europa & Regina but don't want to stay at a chain hotel unless there are no other viable options
- will be there 5 nights in early June
- primary purpose of the visit is to explore the areas of Venice we might not have found before: off-the-beaten path areas, where Venetians live and tour boat people won't likely be found, and offering good photo opportunities of the local area and people (and hopefully not having to dodge people with selfie sticks)
- ready access to vaporetto stop is a plus
- on the final morning have a very early departure from VCE, so will need a location readily accessible to a water taxi
- prefer a real neighborhood near restaurants that don't cater to tourists/serve frozen food
- canal view/terrace/outdoor space is a plus

So here's what I've found so far that appears to be available that seems to meet many or most of those criteria:

Ca' Carmini (Dorsoduro) near Scuola Grande dei Carmini/Campo Sta Margherita
Ca' dell'Artista (Dorsoduro), next door to Church of Eremite
Ca' Della Bottega (Dorsoduro), also near Campo Sta Margherita/Campo Carmini
Hotel Bisanzio (Castello)
Hotel Giorgione (Cannaregio)
Boscolo Venezia (only chain hotel in the list)

Does anyone have any thoughts about any of the above or how they do (or don't) fit into what we're looking for? The first three are part of Views of Venice and looking at their web site I've found several "reviews" that are obviously fake/cut-and-paste, but I've seen others on FT say good things about VoV.

Thanks to anyone who can offer any insight!
Five nights in June should be great if you stay away from the tourist areas, as you plan. Also, you will need to research restaurants and make your reservations days to weeks in advance.

Castello is the place to be. There are wonderful, isolated places in Cannaregio, like around Boscolo, but also some of the worst places, like Strada Nova and near the train station, which are worse than staying near Piazza San Marco.

Castello is easy to get lost in (a good thing), and it seems to have overtaken Cannaregio as the place where Venetians still live and have defended their way of life.

I haven't stayed at Ai Cavalliere, but I've walked by many times, because I consider Campo Santa Maria Formosa (CSMF) to be an essential place to visit. It has elderly couples strolling, fruit and vegetable stands in the middle of the campo, kids playing, etc. San Marco Square, in contrast, has vendors shooting fluorescent toys into the air trying to sell them to you, people tricking tourists into buying counterfeit Prada and Gucci purses, etc.

The church in CSMF has an interesting Mass because it is so local. I wouldn't attend as a tourist, but you can if a member of the faith. The church has interesting relics. For example, the finger of Saint Catherine of Sienna is hanging on the wall. (Her head is hanging on the wall of a church in Sienna, and the rest of her body is buried in Rome.)

Lions are the symbol of Venice, so sculptures and statues of lions are everywhere. On the outside of the church on the right side there are some very interesting lion carvings. It's as if some high school kids decided to sculpture cartoon lions. No one knows how they pulled it off, but someone had a sense of humor.

One thing I don’t like about Cavaliere is their home page says, "Nel cuore di Venezia, a due passi da Rialto e da Piazza San Marco." The translation is, "In the heart of Venice, just a few steps from the Rialto Bridge and Piazza San Marco." First of all, that’s ridiculous. It’s maybe how long a Venetian who knows the streets like the back of their hand will get to those places in the middle of the night, with no crowds. In reality, figure 15-20 minutes. And, I don't know why they would advertise that as a plus. If someone really wants hang out in Rialto or San Marco, just stay there, not a 20 minute walk away, no matter what Google Maps says.

CSMF is a beautiful square, and there are many streets out of it. Go down one, and you’ll hit Alle Testiere, one of Venice’s best restaurants. Exit the Campo on the opposite side and you'll come across Il Mascheretto. There are two. One is a sit down restaurant, the other is a wine bar. They’re not fancy, but these are the places where the locals go to eat. With a reservation, of course.

The downside of Formosa is that it is fairly close to San Marco (15 - 20minutes). If you take street parallel to Alle Testiere, in 50 feet you'll be walking by restaurants with touts in the street shoving menus in your face, offering "Menu Turistica. There is even a place with an 8-foot diameter pizza in the window to fool tourists into thinking it’s a great place for pizza. That gigantic plastic pizza has been in the window for at least 15 years, just like the all the fake fish in the windows of the restaurants around Piazza San Marco. If you see that pizza, make a 180 turn, just like you should run away from any restaurant that displays fish in the window.

Exit CSMF through another alley, and you can get to Campo San Giovanni e Paolo (AKA Zanipolo in dialect), named after the gigantic church in the square with the same name, It’s the second or third most important church in Venice. Probably 3/4ths of the Doges are buried in there. It's close, but plan on getting lost a few times. Just keep asking locals (that's all who you will see), "Dove Zanipoli?"

It’s a 100% local scene. If you get there when school is out you will see tons of kids kicking around soccer balls while their mothers sit in outside cafes eating pastry or gelato. To the left of the massive church is a beautiful white building called Oespedale, or the city hospital. It’s so beautiful you would never know it’s a hospital. Facing the hospital, if you go over the short bridge over the canal to the left, their is a red bar a few steps away that has some of the best cicchetti in the city.

Before you go for the cicchetti you should go into the hospital and walk around. They have light security at the front entrance but if you walk in with purpose they won’t stop you. If they do, just go around the building towards the left where there are several other entrances that don’t have any security. Look around. Go up the stairs, and explore the floors of the hospital. Don't worry, you won't see the patients, but you'll think you are in an art museum. The hospital even has a bar.

In the middle of Campo Giovanni Polo is a huge statue of a famous hero named Colleoni. Before the beautiful building became a hospital it used to be a school called Scuola San Marco. Colleoni was very rich, and had the statue of himself made. He offered to sign over his entire fortune to the city if it agreed to place the statue in front of San Marco after he died. The city agreed, and Colleoni died thinking he would be immortalized by having a statue of himself in the middle of San Marco Square. The Doge fooled him. After he died they put the statue in front of the San Marco School in Campo Zanipolo, the building that is now the hospital. They tricked Collioni, but kept the letter of the law by putting him in front of a place with the name San Marco.

In addition to most of the Doges being buried in the church, one of the most important figures in the Zanipolo church is a hero sailor named Bragadin. Venice used to rule the seas of the known western world. The Doge sent Bragadin to Turkey to negotiate the resolution of some dispute. When he got there with his navy of 6,000 he saw 100,000 troops waiting. He sent a boat back to Venice to ask for reinforcements. The Doge said no, arranged supposedly safe passage with the Turks, and told him to go in and land.

The Turks tricked him, captured him, and put him in a cage and left him in the sun to bake for four days, subject to crowd ridicule. Then, over the next few days they skinned him alive, little by little, in front of the crowd. Finally, they peeled off his face and scalp intact and sewed it over a ball, and let the crowd kick it around the square like a soccer ball for the next few days.

When the Doge heard about this he finally sent the navy to rout the Turks and to take the ball back to Venice, where it now rests on a ledge in the Zanipolo church.

After visiting the church and the hospital, and having cicchetti on the other side of the canal, Walk along the side of the hospital to the end and you’ll be at the waterfront called Fondamente Nova. Few or no tourists. Looking across the water you can see the Island of San Michelle, which is the city cemetery. It’s so crowded in the cemetery that citizens are only allowed to be buried there for 5 years. Then the family has to go back and pick up the body and find another place to bury it. Only famous people who died in Venice are allowed to stay buried there in perpetuity, like the composer Igor Stravinsky, the author Ezra Pound, etc. You can see the glass-making island of Murano across the water, and take the vaporetto there in a few minutes. There is a great restaurant on Fondamete Nova called Algiubagio, with wonderful daytime views of the snow capped Dolomites year round. Actually, this restaurant is almost just around the corner from Boscolo.

From Campo Santa Maria Formosa, the best thing to actually do is walk by Il Mascharetto and keep going deeper, and deeper into Castello. It will be isolated, except when you get to one of the campi, where moms with baby carriages will be, and where the nonas will be hanging out the wash on clothes lines stretching across the streets. Stop at the Church San Franscisco della Vigna. It has a beautiful famous altar by Tiepolo, and many great paintings, and a wonderful courtyard. There is a very famous painting in there whose name escapes me. It is kept in a dark room down the side from the altar. You put a coin in a slot and it turns on the light for a few minutes so you can see it.

In Castello explore Arsenale, walk up Via Garibaldi. Some tourists will be there, but there are great cicchetti bars, and it is where most of the natives live. The natives will be out in force walking the street and packing the bars for cicchetti at night. Go even further east into Castello, beyond Garibaldi, as far as you can, into Giardini and Sant’Elena. It will look unsafe because it is so isolated, but it is not. I've never heard of a crime there, at any time.

Another non-touristy place to explore back in Canareggio is the Canareggio Canal. We think of Venice as the city of canals, but it actually only has three canals; Grand Canal; Giudecca Canal; Cannaregio Canal. All of the other waterways are too small to be called canals, and are called Rio, not canals. Everyone sees the Grand Canal, with good reason. You can’t avoid seeing the Giudecca Canal if you are standing at the waterfront in San Marco. But few visitors see or walk along the Canareggio Canal, which actually is large enough that it has a vaporetto line going up and down, just like the two other canals. But you can just walk along it. It passes right by the Jewish Ghetto, the oldest ghetto in the world, which is worth exploring.

This canal ends at the dreaded Strada Nova near the train station, on one end, the worst place to be, even worse than San Marco, and on the other end at Fondamente Nova which is great, which I already discussed. Once you are 2 blocks from Strada Nova it’s all good. No tourists, great Canal-side bars with outside seating. I don't know why you only see locals and never tourists there. If you visit this canal but are staying in Castello, you might want to take the vaporetto back, the one that goes in front of Fondamente Nova, because it’s a beautiful, but tough walk back in terms of perpetually being lost. It’s fine to do it if it is daytime, you are a strong walker, and you don’t get frustrated by being lost. if you walk, you will really be seeing the beautiful, untouched for centuries back streets of Venice in that part of Canareggio.

For where to stay, Dorsoduro is great. I stay in Castello, but my days are usually spent in Dorsoduro because that's where the University and the Cultural Institute are. Once, instead of staying in Castello I took an apartment about 20 yards from Ca dell’Artista. It's very beautiful It was good for me, because I only had to walk a few minutes to the school, but I really wouldn’t recommend it to you.

One reason is, the Grand Canal really divides the city into two distinct sides. The only way to connect the two is walking ten minutes to go over the Accademia Bridge, or taking a vaporetto. It's a bit of a walk, and a bit much late at night after you've eaten. Most of the things you're going to want to see are on the other side of the Canal from Dorsoduro anyway. Dell’Artista is right off of Campo San Barnaba. Worth going to the Leonrdo Da Vinci exhibit. The main campo near Artista and della Bottega is Campo Santa Margarita.

When in Venice I spend almost every day in that Campo because that’s where the University and the Cultural Institute are. During the day, there is an open air fish market, lots of bars with outside seating. There are lots of students. The problem is, at night those bars become student-oriented bars. You don’t want to be there. In just the past year, business owners around the square held a demonstration against having to pick up all the beer bottles that students leave on the streets in front of the store entrances. When you have a lot of students, at night you will also find drug dealers. Every now and then they send in plain clothes police to do a sting. Once in a blue moon a dealer will mug an old lady if they see her walking down an alley late at night. Residents and business owners also protested this year about the loud music playing at the student bars late into the night, keeping people awake. It’s not bad where those two apartments are because they are not right on the Camp, and it is certainly not touristy, but you want to have nice places to go out and stroll at nigh, and you can do better in Castello.

Ca Carmini is not really that close to Campo Santa Margarita. It’s a pretty dead neighborhood. Not very pretty. It’s getting a little close to Pizzale Roma, and there can be tourist foot traffic, with people dragging suitcases behind them. It’s a beautiful Campo and church worth visiting, but not that high on the list to stay there. It’s pretty isolated. Unlike Artisti and Bottega, which are near Ca Rezzonico boat stop, Carmini is not that convenient to the water either. Your going to get lost early in the morning trying to get to the Ca Rezzonico vaporetto stop to catch your flight.

If you do explore around Campo Santa Margharita, go to San Barnaba, and opposite the Da Vinci exposition is Calle Lunga San Barnaba, where there are some great places to eat, and you’ll eventually arrive at the Zattere, the waterfront along the Giudecca canal. Walking along the Zattere is very beautiful. Taking a vaporetto across to the Giudecca and exploring its back streets is also a good way to spend a couple of hours. If you get deep enough into the back streets, you might even bump into to Elton John’s house. Just stay away from Harrys Bar, including the one in San Marco.

I wouldn’t recommend Palazzo Stern. It’s right next to the Ca Rezzonico vaporetto stop, which confines you to Campo San Barnaba, Campo Santa Margarita, etc., unless you go on a 15 minute walk to go over the Accademia Bridge, or take a vaporetto to get to Canareggio, Castello, San Marco, and all the better places to explore. You can’t just go out and night and be in the middle of nice places in a few minutes from there. There are a few good restaurants and bars, but not to the same extent as on the other side of the Grand Canal. So, while I love Dorsoduro, it really is not optimal for most. Acceptable, but not optimal. It doesn’t have the character of Castello, or some parts of Canareggio.

Although Giorgone is in Canareggio, it is way too close to Strada Nova, the worst street in Venice, with McDonalds, street barkers in booths hawking Mai Tais and Sangria to the tourists packing the streets, walking to the train station. It’s horrible. Besides, I haven’t been in Giorgione, but my impression is that all of the hotels near Strada Nova are dumps. Don’t go by the pictures on their website.

Castello, with few exceptions like where it borders right on Sestiere San Marco, always works. Hotel Bisanzio is a unique find. Now that I gave up my apartment I always seek to stay there. I stayed in January, September, and November of 2016. It’s surrounded by the luxury hotels like the Danieli and Metropolitan, but is hidden away down an alley, just 100 feet from the water, at the San Zaccaria vaporetto stop.

It’s not a luxury hotel, but is clean, convenient, well managed, renovated, and close to where you’ll want to be. Being down an alley, there is no tourist traffic. Walk out straight, and you are at the waterfront in 100 feet. From there, go right and you’ll be at San Marco Piazza in 5-10 minuend. The beauty of it is that being so close, you can easily get to the Piazza early in the morning and late in the evening, when it is empty and magical. Or, you can go left at the water to Arsenale, or to Via Garibaldi, and walk up this very local street and have cicchetti, or even a fine meal.

Or instead of going to the water, take a right just outside the door of the hotel, and then another right, and you’ll be in great back streets to explore, that can get you to CSMF. Or, take an immediate left out the door and in 100 feet you’ll come to a beautiful campo with the church were Vivaldi was baptized. He was raised in this Campo, and spent his career nearby. If you catch it at the right time, you can go in and see his birth certificate. Then, just keep going in that direction, and you come to the wonderful back streets of unspoiled Castello. Another Campo every few hundred feet. Moms pushing strollers, people gathered around the benches, laundry shops, hardware stores, shoemakers, real Venetian neighborhoods.

Push all the way to the end, to Giardini, Sant’Elena. You’ll always be lost, but you’ll always find your way back if you just get to the water, and walk along the water to the San Zaccaria vaporetto stop, which is right in front of the alley that brings you 100 feet to Bisanzio. In fact, at the entrance to the alley there is a plaque in the street with an arrow saying this way to Hotel Bisanzio, so you will get lost, but won't stay lost. Take a vaporetto from anywhere to San Zaccaria, and you will be home.

In fact, at Campo San Zaccaria there is the San Zaccaria church with the famous altar piece by Bellini, and one of the most famous paintings in Venice, whose name escapes me at the moment. You want to be deep in Castello, not at Campo Santa Margarita, with the college students leaving beer bottles around.

I usually get the same room at Bisanzio, I don’t remember the number because they save it for me. It has two floors, with the top one looking across the rooftops to the back of the Basilica of San Marco.

However, when staying for 5 days or more, they have two apartments a couple of blocks away, around the corner from Vivaldi’s birthplace. Since you have to go down an alley to get there, it’s very hidden. No tourists. Just a very lively morning scene of people getting up and getting their coffee, then taking the kids to school, or going to work. Great restaurants. This is where you find the laundry person, the tailor, the butcher, the wine shops, etc. If you can reserve one of those two apartments you hit the jackpot. Some of the best restaurants are right on the street before you or around the corner, like Al Covo. There is a wonderful local wine store right outside the apartment. There’s a super bakery for coffee and pastry for breakfast in the morning right around the corner (breakfast in Italy is pastry and coffee, not eggs. With the exception of frittata, or left over spaghetti from the night before scrambled in an egg, eggs are something you eat for dinner). Or, you can walk two blocks back to the hotel and eat the breakfast there, including American breakfast of eggs, bacon, waffles, etc.

Bisanzio apartments are not as luxurious as the ones from Views of Venice but they’ll do very nicely, and beat the heck out of them by location. If the apartments aren’t available, the hotel is still just fine. It won’t be cheap in June, but neither will any other place be, and it will be way cheaper than Ai Cavalliere or Palazzo Stern. They will be rented very, very quickly. Heck, I might even put one on reserve now. Bisanzio is one of the few places you can be in June, and because of its location down an alley in Castello, pretty much avoid the crowds, then hit Piazza San Marco and other places in ten minutes, before, and after the crowds are there.

Last edited by Perche; Jan 12, 17 at 1:44 am
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Old Jan 12, 17, 7:41 am
  #9  
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Wow!

I have to admit, Perche, when your initial response was so short I was worried that I wasn't going to hear from you again. I shouldn't have worried! Thank you so much for such an insightful and helpful message.

Here's my takeaway from my research coupled with your thoughts. I've eliminated the VoV/Dorsoduro options from the list. In the back of my mind I recalled from prior visits the challenges of getting across the Canale Grande if I happened to be somewhere there wasn't a bridge, but your post reinforced that.

For the Bisanzio, there are both a superior room with a terrace and an apartment available for my dates. The superior room is about E350 more than the apartment for what appears to be less space, but the thought of a terrace is enticing. The room also looks a bit more "plush" than the apartment. If you've been in one of their terrace rooms, do you have any particular thoughts about that vs an apartment?

I'm also keeping Giorgione on the list temporarily while I look around other Castello options. Your comments about being too close to the Strada Nova are well-taken, and I know what you said about the pictures on their web site, but their junior suite with balcony, assuming the photos are even close to accurate, is less expensive than Bisanzio with what appears to be a bigger/better-appointed room.

Anyway, I will continue my investigations... thank you again for such a detailed and helpful post, and if you have anything else that might be helpful following my comments here, I will remain grateful!

(Edited to add: it also appears that a superior room at the Residence Corte Grimani is available for our dates and at roughly the same price point. Seems to be fairly centrally located, but perhaps too much so...?)

Last edited by FormerLurker; Jan 12, 17 at 7:55 am Reason: Corte Grimani info
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Old Jan 12, 17, 10:45 am
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It's very risky to trust the pictures. I know that the rooms and apartments at Bisanzio are not as nice as the pictures make them to be. The apartment is not a luxury apartment in any sense. It's just a typical Venetian apartment, where a better off Venetian would live. It's not huge, but has a decent living room and kitchen, and a separate, nice bedroom. In the hotel i haven't stayed in the room with the balcony. I've just stayed in the superior loft, without the balcony.

I'm sure Giorgione is doing a bait and switch. They specially stage a room, but it is not the room that you will get. Since it's right off of Strada Nova, almost anywhere you want to go to from there is going to be packed densely with tourists. Corte Grimani is just as bad, perhaps worse. It is next to Ponte Rialto, just down the street and around the corner from the Venice Disneyland store. That area is packed with tourists. In both of these places, you will be in thick crowds.
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Old Jan 12, 17, 12:03 pm
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Originally Posted by Perche View Post
I've just stayed in the superior loft, without the balcony.
If I'm reading the web site correctly, the loft room is considered a suite (but no outdoor space) and the superior room comes either with or without a balcony. I think the terrace will win out over the apartment if we do end up in this hotel, but I'm going to continue looking. I assume you would have already said this if there were one, but do you have any recommendations for unbiased/accurate sites that review Venice rental properties/rooms, or do they all suffer from TripAdvisor-like fake postings? Again, thanks for all of your help!
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Old Jan 14, 17, 10:34 am
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I don't believe there are unbiased sites. They are all advertisements. You don't get what you see in the pictures. Typically, they will update and restore one particular room, and show that on the website, perfectly dressed. Then when you arrive, that is not the room you get. You get one on the 4th floor, that looks nothing like that one room. The photos are sales promotions, so they can't be unbiased. Rental property company evaluations are as bad as those on TripAdvisor and AirBnb.

I recently read an article that used game theory to try to figure out what AirBnb ratings fall into two bins: the owner either gets a 1, or a 5. There are no 2's or 3's, which would mean that the place is average. Even dirty places, with animal hair on the couch, sparse hot water, lack of adequate air conditioning or heating, and the WiFi doesn't work as advertised, renters still give it a rating of 5. According to the article, the only time a place gets a 1, or terrible rating. is when the renter never saw the place, typically because the owner canceled at the last minute. The dropped renter rates them a 1 out of anger. Everyone else gets a five, no matter how bad.

What is the saying, "if everyone is unique, then no one is." If everyone apartment, hotel, or restaurant is a 5 star on TA or AirBnb, then no on is. This is why the top rated restaurant in Rome is a store that sells artificial gelato. Many more people eat in that store than eat in a top restaurant, and even though the only thing they serve besides artificial gelato is a few cookies, by sheer numbers the gelato ranks higher on TA than Michelin and other world famous roman restaurants.

I don't remember the theory exactly about why such ratings are worthless, but I think it mentioned that when rating a restaurant or a rental apartment that you choose, you are rating your wisdom, decision-making, and choices. If you rent a room at the Hilton and there is no hot water, the wifi doesn't work, you don't have to regret your choice, you just blame Hilton.

I wouldn't believe those photos, and staying near the Venice Disneyland store, or near Strada Nova, you are going to be right smack into the selfie stick taking packed, day tripper crowd.
Perche is offline  
Old Jan 14, 17, 10:39 am
  #13  
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So what I'm hearing loud and clear is . . . stay at the Bisanzio.

Thanks - all of this is immensely helpful. If only the E&R were (a) less expensive and (b) buried somewhere in Castello.
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Old Jan 14, 17, 10:42 am
  #14  
 
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There are others, but that one I know well. You mentioned Boscolo. Also, see the other post today where someone reported on their trip over New Years and stayed Ai Oriente.
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Old Jan 17, 17, 7:09 am
  #15  
 
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You might consider Ca' Pozzo, on a side canal off the Ponte delle Guglie. It's down a side alley, but only steps from the canal, and there's an airport vaporetto stop right there. You'll be around the corner from the Jewish quarter and a lot of local shops and restaurants.

http://www.capozzoinn.com/
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