Senior Women's Travel

VENICE FREE TIME -

Take a tour by motor boat of Burano, Murano, Torcello… only 4 hours for a glimpse of these 3 islands.Alternatively, we used to spend a whole day visiting these islands by taking public transportation, transferring from one vaporetto to another. Cost of this tour is only $27. Leaves around 3pm.

Breakfast with a view at the Molino Stucky Hilton, a massive luxury hotel, a former flour mill. Join me for an early morning vaporetto ride to Giudecca’s western end. Rooftop terrace faces a view of Venice’s 118 islands.

VENICE VIEWS - THE BEST

Santa Maria della Salute Church at night from terrace of Bauer Hotel. Any time of day from the lagoon entering the Grand Canal.

The Campanile bell tower on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore, extraordinary panoramic view.

Rooftop terraces: Hotel Danieli, The Hilton Stucky Hotel.

BOOKING YOUR TRIP... Book as early as possible, a few moths is preferable. If your plans change, your deposit is refunded 60 days before trip departure. If you book at the last minute, hotel rooms with the group may not be available. Hotels require a long canellation policy with small tour operators.

Calander of 2013
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Travel By-The-Book : Senior Women's Travel : Favorite Cities : Theatre Tours
Travel by Knife & Fork : Unique Trips


Venice beyond St mark's

Ruskin Lived and Wrote Here

2016 TBD

We broaden your view of Venice and explore what defines Venice:

… its history, both glories and defeats

… its magnificent artists

 … Venice’s place in the literary world  the unique homage paid to the city by the greatest  literary figures  throughout the ages.

Itinerary: Venice Beyond St. Mark's Square

Day 1
Transfer on your own to our hotel, an above average 3star. A great location, a 10 minute walk to St. Mark’s and just steps away from a vaporetto stop. We love the bountiful breakfast buffet. The reception desk staff is outstanding. I love them for all they have done for me over many years.

Ruskin Lived and Wrote Here

Innovative jewelry design at Atombri Jewelers

3:30 pm Private motor taxi ride down the Grand Canal where Gregory Dowling, our friend and guide for over ten years, will commentate on the palazzo we pass with insider stories and lots of gossip.

5:30 pm Tea at Jeremy’s
Most Sundays, Jeremy, a Brit who teaches at Ca’Foscari University in Venice,hosts tea at his apartment crammed with books, tapes, paintings and art objects. Expats meet  here and the conversation is lively. No other tours are present. Clients love this chance to experience Jeremy's unique Sunday Salon.

Group  dinner.

Day 2

Our guide knows the elevator system so we can avioid a lot of the stairs.

St. Mark’s  Square:  The Doge Palace & the Basilica with a focus on the history of Venice, both its glories and fall from prominence.

Afternoon: Free

Your chance to  wander around  St. Mark’s Square with its huge array of boutiques.  All the big designer  names are here plus too  many tacky souvenir shops and here and there, a  shop  that just might take your breath away with its style and innovation.

Palazzo Barbaro Palazzo Barbaro

Posh Boutique with a sense of humor

Bright Colored Leather Totes

My new favorite: the Attombri  jewelry shop with magnificent contemporary design many  of their pieces start with antique Murano beads.

SHOPPING …IF YOU CAN’T AFFORD THE EXPENSIVE INTERNATIONAL BOUTIQUES,, WALK DOWN ALMOST ANY NARROW STREET TO FIND CLOSET SIZED STORES WITH INTERESTING PRODUCTS. We like the wares of this innovative paper shop. Love their leather bright colored totes.

The Glory Of Venice The Glory Of Venice

To cross the Grand Canal, take the gondola called a traghetto. The challenge: you must stand and balance
yourself, weight distribution is the secret

Breakfast with a View Hilton Stucky Hotel

Day 3
Carpaccio,  Tintoretto, Veronese, Titian, Bellini…the great names of Venetian art

Private guided tour of the Frari…my favorite venue to be wowed by the grandeur of  its  architecture and soaring  art including Titian’s Assumption. Read an analysis of Titan's Assumption .

Afternoon: Palaza Fortuy - For years I have been complaining about the Fortuny Museum. It was dark and dingy with little to tell the Fortuny story. In March 2013 the museum reopened after years of closure.  I liked it so much I went back twice. Part of the reason for a return visit, the museum doesn’t make it clear that there are 3 floors that you should visit.

Palazzo Barbaro Palazzo Barbaro

Magnificent Fortuny Garments


I have a special interest in Fortuny because of Proust. He was an admirer of Fortuny dresses and his gifts to Albertine are an important part of the novel.
There are only a few Fortuny dresses on display but they are some of the most beautiful  I have ever seen.  And there are models of some of Fortuny’s designs for the theatre.

Day 4

Morning:. Venice’s Literary Heritage. Gregory Dowling gives us an overview of some of the world’s most famous authors, including Byron, Henry James, Browning . Select readings will illustrate how they viewed Venice. 
On another literary note, Gregory views the work of mystery writer, Donna Leon, and her use of Venice as backdrop for her mayhem and murder.

Afternoon: VENICE BY VAPORETTO…HOP ON, HOP OFF…We have created this tour so you can cover several different neighborhoods from the viewpoint of the water. We start at the Fondamente Nuovo. We visit the remote San Francisco della Vigna Church with its celebrated Bellini. And ending at the Madonna dell’lOrto Church . The church has an interesting history. Tintoretto is buried here and we see his painting in the apse.

Palazzo Barbaro Palazzo Barbaro

Wandering through Venice and getting lost along the way

Gondolas figured prominently in Venice's history

Day 5
Optional Day… There is much to see. Choose from this list: Accademia . The Peggy Guggenheim Museum. Palazzo Grassi, Ca’d'Oro, Ca” Rezzonico, Sculo Grande San Rocco with a very good audio guide in English.

Day 6
The Rialto Market is where many Venetians hop on the vaporetto with a wheeled cart in tow to choose the freshest fish, vegetables and outstanding cheeses.

Lunch at one of several restaurants right next to the market where you are treated to the bustling activity on the Grande Canal.

Afternoon: Affordable Luxury…If you can’t afford the 1500 euro a night to stay at the Bauer Palladio Hotel, maybe you might pay about $200 for a spa treatment there. An outdoor massage, if the weather is good, sounds intriguing. A wonderful view across the Grand Canal to St. Mark’s Square and a chance to sample the super upscale ambiance.

You will be transported by motor launch from the Bauer Hotel across the Grand Canal to its sister hotel.

The Bauer Palladio Hotel to its elegant spa. To encourage you to pamper yourself we give you a $100 towards a treatment of your choice, most over $200.

Farewell  dinner at Ridotto…my favorite Venice restaurant ,  expensive but worth it. Last September I had lunch there with a New York foodie friend who gave it very  high praise. She said “there may be better food in New York City but I don’t know where  it is” - not included in tour price

Ruskin Lived and Wrote Here

Spritz is THE drink of Venice - Campari, Prosecco & seltzer - Many Venetians start their day with a spritz.

What’s Missing?

Music, for one thing. Vivaldi and Fenice Opera and concerts in interesting small venues. We will have schedules.

Meals:There are two meals included in the tour price. Group dinner first night. The second is not really a meal. It’s a cichetti tasting at my favorite bar. Cichetti are small tastes and yes, you will have to stand while you balance a glass of wine and these delicious, addictive tastes of Venice. A dinner plan will be part of final itinerary.

Other nights, we can certainly eat as a group if you prefer.

Eating in Venice…If the weather is good, nothing is better than searching out a campo.  Our criteria,It is small and it must have just one restaurant. St. Toma has just such a square where we enjoyed a perfect risotto garnished with crayfish.
Or we might choose one of two small eateries . La Marca serves wonderful one bite sandwiches or our favorite cicchetti spot. These are tiny bites of almost anything as shown.

 

The Glory Of Venice The Glory Of Venice The Glory Of Venice

Seafood Risotto at a lovely campo

Cicchetti, Venice's famous snacks - my favorite meal

Closet size wine bar sells tasty one bite sandwiches

Cost: $3700 includes 6 night hotel room, no single supplement.  Everyone has their own private room with no additional cost. Most other tour companies impose a hefty single supplement if you want your own room. 6 breakfasts, 2-3 day vaporetto passes (over $100 value) entry fee to Doge Palace, St. Mark’s and Frari.
Not included: airfare, airport transfers, lunches, coffee stops, wine or alcoholic beverages.Optional Day activities