We’ve only fairly recently acquainted ourselves properly with Venice. We tend to try and avoid over-priced, tourist traps with street vendors waiting to pounce. Yes, it can be over-priced – but if you do insist on having a drink in St Mark’s Square, what else can you expect? It is very touristry in places – the aforementioned St Mark’s Square and around the main train station (Venezia Santa Lucia) – but the maze of alleyways around the canals and lagoon ensure that you can escape the crowds, even when it is very busy. And yes, there are street vendors selling carnival masks and all kinds of Italian paraphenalia – but to be honest, most is of really good quality, and you don’t tend to get hassled.
However, the best thing we found recently – and we have to admit we visited in December, so the height of summer will be a very different story – was the amazing prices you could get accommodation for in some beautiful hotels. We always tend to use the Booking.Com website, as it’s quick and easy and this one night stay was no different. We don’t tend to book ages in advance in either. We prefer to be fairly flexible about where we stay and so often book as late as the day before. (We also know that we are very, very lucky in being able to travel out of seaon, and that people who can’t because of school holidays must really be irritated by this – sorry!) And this was how we came to find Ca’Amadi. Images are the first things I go by – even before the price – and this was one of a handful of hotels we narrowed our choice down to, as the photos showed somewhere potentially very beautiful. We gave up after looking at about ten hotels as each one could have been booked and we’d probably still be looking now if we’d continued searching.
The price for a double room with private bathroom was amazing – €62.59 – and a quick check of reviews across various review sites, led us to book immediately. We drove to Venice – once over the Venice Railroad Bridge (if you’re lucky, you’ll get a train on the tracks next to you, a plane coming into land overhead, and a boat coming into dock. If you’re very unlucky, you’ll see one of the massive cruise liners docking, ready to spill thousands of tourists out into Venice…), there are two car parks to your right. Once you’ve taken a right hand turn, you have two choices when you follow the San Marco parking signs – right for day parking (charged by the hour) and left for overnight parking (€30). More of parking in a later blog…
And so onto Ca’Amadi, literally 2 minutes from the world famous Rialto Bridge. We’d read that it was quite complicated to get to – but we guess the same as most hotels in Venice, so we just used google maps and walked there relatively easily. Again, like many Venice hotels, it’s off a main “road” and the access is via an alleyway. Possibly a bit alarming if you’re expecting something a bit grander, but once in the courtyard, well worth it. After all, it’s not every day you get to stay in a 13th Century palace that was also, for a time, a residence of Marco Polo. Wowsers!
The reception area (the windows above on the right) was just stunning – original frescoed timber ceiling, crystal chandeliers and floor to ceiling windows at the opposite end to these windows, leading out onto a balcony. (With a note asking guests not to step out into, as with it being 13th C and all, it was a bit fragile). This area also doubled as the breakfast room – and it’s definitely the first time I’ve had scrambled eggs and coffee in somewhere so steeped in history.
This was our room…
…although if you wanted something a little grander –
Location : Cannaregio 5815, 30121, Venezia