A really good Italian hotel will cosset you with creature comforts, seduce you with style and elegance and make you feel at home with friendly service. Use this website to help you find the perfect place to stay during your visit to Italy. We have tried and tested every hotel featured and can vouch for the locations, standard of facilities and level of service.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Hotel San Cassiano Venice

Enjoy a taste of Venetian glamour at former artist's palace

Hotel San Cassiano Venice
Hotel San Cassiano

Find out what it is like to live in a palace on the Grand Canal by staying at the Hotel San Cassiano in Venice.
This 14th century palazzo has been the residence of some of the most important Venetian families over the centuries and was home in the 19th century to the painter Giacomo Favretto.
The elegant three star Hotel San Cassiano is still known as Ca’ Favretto (Favretto’s House). Its distinctive, oxblood red painted façade is well photographed by visitors on board vaporetti (water buses) sailing along the Grand Canal between Santa Lucia railway station and the Rialto.
The palace was transformed into a hotel in 1951 and furnished in opulent Venetian style while retaining many of its features and original character.
An extensive buffet breakfast is served in the first floor salone overlooking the Grand Canal where Favretto used to paint. The room has a terrace where you can sit and watch the gondole glide past, seeing the views that inspired Favretto and his famous predecessor, Canaletto.
Guest rooms either overlook the Grand Canal, a side canal or the hotel’s pretty courtyard. Although furnished with tapestries, antique furniture and gilded mirrors they also have smart, modern well equipped bathrooms, satellite television, minibars and air conditioning.
Editor’s note: “I took my mother to stay at the San Cassiano for her birthday and she was able to open her cards and presents outside the breakfast room on the terrace overlooking the Grand Canal, watched by tourists going past who probably thought she was a member of the Venetian nobility!”

For more information, to check prices and to book a room at the Hotel San Cassiano, go to our hotel booking partner Hotels.com or try Expedia UK

Why stay at the Hotel San Cassiano in the Santa Croce area?

Behind the Hotel San Cassiano, which is on the upper sweep of the Grand Canal, lie the fascinating narrow streets and small squares typical of the Santa Croce quarter of Venice.  It is well off for shops, bars and restaurants, with prices tending to be lower than those charged by establishments closer to Piazza San Marco.
The hotel is a short walk from the San Stae waterbus stop and is handy if you are arriving at or departing from either the railway station at Santa Lucia or the bus station at Piazzale Roma.
It is just a short walk from the San Cassiano to the Rialto Bridge with its famous food market and souvenir stalls.

What to see near the Hotel San Cassiano

From the windows of the hotel, on the opposite bank of the Grand Canal, you will have a good view of the Ca' d’Oro, Venice’s famous ‘golden house’, a fine example of Venetian gothic architecture.
It was built in the 15th century for the Contarini family, who provided the city with eight of its doges over the centuries. The palace is now open to the public as an art gallery.
A short walk through the calle away from the Grand Canal will take you to one of Venice’s principal churches, Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, where there are masterpieces by Titian, Bellini and Donatello and the tomb of Italian composer Monteverdi.
Walking in the direction of the Rialto will quickly bring you to the Campo della Pescheria and Venice’s famous fish market, which has recently been developed into a vibrant area with bars and restaurants where you can eat outside looking out over the Grand Canal .
There is now a new water bus stop for this area called Rialto Mercato.
Travel Tip: A single ticket for the vaporetto is 7 so it is worth buying a travel card for your stay in Venice for use on both water and land transport. Prices:12 hours 18, 24 hours 20, 36 hours 25, 48 hours 30 and 72 hours 35.
Directions: To reach the Hotel San Cassiano, take the water bus to San Stae and walk down Salizzada San Stae and Calle Forner before turning into Calle della Rosa where you will find the rear entrance of the hotel. Alternatively, you can take a water taxi along the Grand Canal direct to the hotel’s own landing stage.

Restaurant recommendation

Inside Vini da Pinto
Vini da Pinto is a short walk from the hotel in Campo delle Beccarie close to the Rialto Market (nearest water bus stop Rialto Mercato.) Established in 1890, the restaurant serves good value food and wine with tables inside and outside. Sample the excellent fresh fish dishes and local specialities such as baccalà mantecato, seppie in nero and spaghetti alle vongole. There is a tasting menu to enable you to try small portions of a number of dishes. The restaurant is open every day from 10.00 to 22.00.
Editor’s note: “I return to Vini da Pinto time and time again because I know that I will enjoy a good meal. My favourite is pasta with prawns and courgettes followed by crisply grilled Adriatic sole with salad and chips. The house wine is excellent and very good value.”

Local specialities: Try sarde in saor (sardines served with an Italian sweet and sour sauce), fegato alla veneziana (tender calf’s liver cooked on a bed of onions) and zuppa di cozze (mussels with white wine, garlic and parsley).

Local wines: White: Soave, which is so well known internationally, is made from grapes grown in the vineyards around the nearby hilltop town of Soave . Also look out for Tocai and Bianco di Custoza on restaurant menus.
Red: Valpolicella is a pleasant, light, fruity wine made in the area between Verona and Lake Garda .
Frizzante: Don’t miss trying Prosecco, the lovely, sparkling wine produced in the Veneto .
Named after the variety of grape it is made from, Prosecco is lighter and more delicate than Champagne because it is bottled while young rather than being fermented.
It is made in the areas of Valdobbiadene and Conegliano although it was probably named after the town of Prosecco near Trieste where the grape, one of Italy’s oldest, is believed to have originated.
Italy produces 150 million bottles of Prosecco a year, mostly from the area around Valdobbiadene. Fortunately for the rest of the world, Prosecco travels well and is reasonably priced when put on sale abroad. It is best drunk young.
When on holiday in Italy, Prosecco is an ideal aperitivo before lunch and dinner and a refreshing drink to order in a bar when you are having a break from sight seeing.

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