Monograms provides travelers access to a Local Host®, so you will have someone on hand to answer those vacation questions pertaining to Venice. No waiting in line at the concierge desk or trying to ask your waitress at breakfast directions to the shopping district. Simply ask your Local Host® about Venice and you'll be on your way in no time. Plus, your Local Host® will share local Venice insights and share suggestions for getting off the beaten path, leaving you more time to create lasting vacation memories that are yours alone.
Meet a Local Host® in Venice
Hi! Monograms Guests, you can call me "Grace" or my Italian name "Graziella." After studying foreign languages in schools abroad, I started my career working on a cruise ship and travelled around the world. I continued as a tour guide around Europe and Morocco until I came back to my hometown of Venice to be a Monograms Local Host. I feel so lucky to work in this magical place, where everything provides our guests with unique emotions - from the canals, monuments, and the lagoon itself, to the colors, perfumes, and music on the Piazza. The splendor of the past and its traditions are all to be shared with my guests who enjoy it very much.
St. Mark's Bell Tower
Travel to the top for an unrivalled view of Venice and its surroundings. The tower is 323 ft (98.6m) tall, and stands alone in a corner of St Mark’s Square. The belfry houses five bells and a cube with St. Mark’s lion and the female representation of Venice (la Giustizia: Justice). The tower is topped by a golden weathervane in the form of the archangel Gabriel.
Squero di San Trovaso
A characteristic boatyard (squero) dating back from the 17th century on the rio (small canal), of San Trovaso, in a particularly picturesque position. It's one of the last traditional squeri still constructing gondolas.
Burano Island, Lido Island, Saint Elena Island
The Island of Burano, in the Venetian lagoon, is made of picturesque canals lined with brightly colored houses. It even has a leaning tower, the bell tower of the 15th century San Martino Church. The island is also famous for its artisan lace makers and there's a Lace Museum as well as shops selling lace. An under-appreciated gem, the Lido Island, more residential than traditional Venice, still offers small canals, a variety of dining and impressive views of the city from across the Lagoon. Lido is the beach of Venice and is famous for its Movie Festival. Sant'Elena Island lies at the eastern tip of the main island group and was centered on the Church of Sant'Elena and its monastery, originally built in the 12th century and rebuilt in the 15th.
Palazzo Mocenigo houses a history of Venetian fashion and perfume. Accademia Gallery contains works by Tintoretto, Bellini and Carpaccio. Peggy Guggenheim Museum located in Peggy Guggenheim's former home, the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni on the Grand Canal, houses one of the most important collections of American and European Modern Art. Ca'Rezzonico a beautiful Venetian palace and residence, is home to a collection of 18th century Venetian furnishings and paintings. Jewish Museum Visit the Jewish Ghetto dating back to the early 16th century, its Museum exhibits traditions of goldsmith's and textile arts. The Arsenal and Naval History Museum founded in 1104, was once the hub of Venice's naval power and is now a closed military zone, but its impressive gates are well worth seeing. Visit the Museum's fascinating collection of model ships, including the amazingly lavish ceremonial Doges' barge, the Bucintoro.
Venice has a wealth of churches showcasing fine religious art and historic testimony. Here is a selection of the most famous which are well worth a visit. Your Local Host is available with more details.
Basilica of San Giovanni e Paolo: after the 15th century funeral services of all Venetian Doges were held here, and 25 Doges are buried in the basilica. Church of San Rocco: built between 1489 and 1508, then underwent major alterations in 1725. It holds paintings by Venetian artist Tintoretto (1519-1594), and was one of The Plague sanctuaries. Santa Maria Formosa: built in 1492 on the site of a church dating from the 7th century where the Virgin Mary was believed to have appeared. Santa Maria dei Miracoli: known as the marble church, was built in 1481 to hold a miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary, and is one of the finest examples of early Venetian Renaissance architecture. Basilica of San Pietro di Castello: designed by Andrea Palladio, dates from the 16th century, but has been a religious site from early times. From 1451 to 1807 it was the city's cathedral, serving as its spiritual and religious administration center. San Giorgio Maggiore: located on St. George Island, is a masterpiece of architect Andrea Palladio. The church houses paintings by famous artists, including Tintoretto.
La Fenice Theater
Visit one of Italy's most famous theaters, the reconstructed La Fenice which is famed for its acoustics. The world was stunned when it was destroyed by fire; millions of dollars were raised and stars such as Luciano Pavarotti and Woody Allen offered their support so that it could be reconstructed.
Murano Island and Traditional Gifts
Murano, the center of the Venetian glass blowing industry for more than 1,000 years, is also known for its Glass Museum and the Byzantine church, Santi Maria e Donato with its beautiful mosaic floor. Venetian shopping specialties include Murano glass crafts and glass pearls, lace, carnival masks, and unique Christmas gift calendars.
Fortuny’s showroom on Giudecca collects and displays the company’s mementos, textiles and other works, plus carries a range of products, including pillows, accessories, and fabric. Fabrics made by the prestigious firm, Bevilacqua, have been used to decorate the Vatican, the Royal Palace of Stockholm, and the White House. Master artisans still weave the fabrics in Venice on 18th-century wooden looms, and the front-room display is just a sample of their artistry.
Atelier Nicolao is in the very heart of the city, and here deft and expert fingers create unique and wonderful costumes that are appreciated all over the world. The Nicolao Atelier has become a point of reference for theatre, opera, films and historical parades and processions.
Sample “cicchetti” which are various small snacks or side dishes, typically served in traditional "bàcari" (cicchetti bars or osterie). Some classic Venetian dishes are Sarde in Saor, (sweet & sour sardines), Bigoli in Salsa (pasta in a salted sardine & onion sauce, one of the oldest recipes of Venice), famous Risi e bisi (rice & peas), Baccalà Mantecato (a creamy soft mousse-like cod), Pasta e Fagioli (pasta & beans), Fegato alla Veneziana (liver cooked with onions) and to satisfy your sweet tooth, the traditional Carnival Frittelle (little sweet fried dumplings) and Tiramisù.
Harry's Bar, Caffè Florian
Harry's Bar was one of Hemingway's favorite haunts, see where the novelist created his signature cocktail … made of 15 parts gin to 1 part vermouth! Or try its world famous "Bellini". Stop for a drink at Caffè Florian, situated in the shadows of San Marco and listen to its orchestra.
Verona, Padua and the Dolomites
If you have already visited Venice, take advantage of its excellent location to visit nearby mainland areas such as Verona, Padua and the Dolomite mountains.
In 2015: The 56th Venice Biennale
Held every two years from June through November, The Venice Biennale, has for over a century been one of the most prestigious cultural institutions in the world. Ever since its foundation in 1895, it has been in the avant-garde, promoting new artistic trends and organizing international events in contemporary arts.