Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 1134: Owner, VRBO #20217
1bed/1bath apartment in Dorsoduro, Venice
October 2004, 4 nights
The rental is located in the Dorsoduro district of Venice, right off Campo San Barnaba (just down the street from the Ca' Rezzonico vaporetto stop). The entry is on a private lane with only a couple other residences so there is no pedestrian traffic immediately in front of the rental. For the most part the rental was peaceful and quiet, but it is just down the lane from Ristorante Oniga, one of the restaurants listed in Rick Steves' Venice 2004 guidebook, so sometimes it did get a little noisy - the sounds of people enjoying their dinner conversations and the clattering of pots, pans, and dishes being washed - but it was not irritating or annoying.
I loved Campo San Barnaba - it was the first time in Italy I actually was able to watch Italian children playing. It was charming to walk to the supermarket - there was a barge parked (?) in the Rio di San Barnaba canal selling vegetables. I could have stood by all day just to watch the man sitting on a stool next to the barge cutting the stems and leaves (?) off the artichokes.
As you know, there are no cars in the canal areas of Venice! A large supermarket is only 1 bridge crossing away, less than 5 minutes walking just before you arrive at Campo Santa Margherita. There are numerous restaurants to be found on Campo San Barnaba, Campo Santa Margherita, and the street that joins them.
According to the website, the building is from the 17th century, but I was not able to confirm this with the owner. It was in very good shape.
There is no outside sitting area, but one of the windows overlooked a private garden. The rental did not have a pool (you should be out getting lost in the calles of Venice rather than swimming anyway!)
The furniture was in very good shape. The dining room (downstairs) had four chairs. The living room (upstairs) had a couch. I probably should have moved the chair from the bedroom desk into the living - I ended up sitting on the floor a couple of times since my husband was hogging the couch. Can't say if the couch was comfortable, since I never sat on it - but my husband never complained about it, so it must have been ok. The rental was very clean.
The master bed (upstairs) was extremely comfortable; we slept very well on it. The bedroom was very nice - it had a double bed, a child-sized daybed (which we used as a luggage stand), a desk with chair, and a roomy armoire. There was only one bathroom (downstairs). The bidet, sink, and toilet portion were a little cramped - but the shower stall was huge!
The kitchen was functional and roomy. It had a washing maching, a gas cooktop, a microwave, and a toaster, but no oven. There were plenty of good quality pots, pans, and dishes. I just made very simple meals, so I had no problem using the kitchen effectively. Don't know how well it would work for a big production dinner.
Problems or Bonuses
The stone stairs are quite hard on bare feet - but at least the staircase had a hand railing to hold onto when going up and down.
The bedroom is upstairs while the bathroom is downstairs - makes it a long walk if you have to use the facilities in the middle of the night. Plus, people sleeping in the bedroom have to walk through the living room to reach the staircase. This could disturb any light sleepers using the sofa bed. There was not much drying line space (not that anything dries in damp Venice in October anyway). Unfortunately, I didn't realize this until after washing two loads of laundry. Good thing Rick Steves' Venice 2004 gave the address of a self service laundrymat (for reference, its at #4826 Ruga Giuffa, next to Hotel al Piave, not far from St. Mark's Square).
The tankless hot water system runs very hot then cold then hot, so it made for an interesting showering experience.
The gas cooktop was a little tricky to light, but I eventually got the hang of it.
The owner gave us a bottle of wine as a welcome gift.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The owner, Antonio Ruzzene met us at Campo San Barnaba to take us to the rental. He spoke English very well and was very friendly and helpful. He was very prompt with email responses to my various inquiries. The reality of the place accurately reflected teh published information. We paid 100 Euros per night for four nights in October 2004 (2 Oct thru 6 Oct).
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I would definately stay here again - maybe for a couple weeks next time! I would certainly recommend this rental to my best friend. Since there is a staircase, it is not an appropriate place for people with mobility issues. Due to the proximity to local restaurants, it would probably not be appropriate for someone who requires complete silence in the evenings.
Things to do in this area
Its Venice! Everyplace is close by vaporetto, and some things are close by foot (Accademia, The Peggy Guggenheim Collection).
There is a gelato place just over the bridge and just after you turn the corner to Campo Santa Margherita. We ate at Ristorante "L'Incontro" which had good food, but seemed a little pricey (75 Euros for three people).
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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