Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 3250: Views on Venice, Ca' Duca
3bed/2bath apartment in San Marco, Venice
November 2007, one week
The apartment building is on the Ct. Sforza, near Campo San Stefano and is on the fourth floor of a nondescript apartment building on the Grand Canal, in the San Marco district. It is at the deepest bend of the canal, just south of San Samuele vaporetto stop. Standing on the balcony, you can easily see the Ca'Rezzonico if you look right, and almost spot the Accademia bridge looking left. While this is a lovely location, there is really not much of a neighborhood here. However, proximity-wise, very desirable, as it feels very close to St. Marks, the Accademia, the Rialto, etc.
We didn't find any nearby grocery stores until our last day (there's one off Campo San Stefano if you know where to look. Our first night we walked off to the Billa on that Zattere (about a 15 minute walk)to buy coffee and supplies. There are a number of restaurants in Campo San Stefano, and plenty on the way to St. Marks.
The place is charming and quite surprising how lovely it is. The apartment has been renovated and feels historical. It has the authentic terrazzo flooring. While it was much larger than I expected from the photos, the floor plan isn't that great. The apartment is probably 1800 square feet. On the first (fourth) floor, there's an adjacent living and dining room, with grand canal facing windows, and a quite large bedroom with windows that open on to the balcony. I should note that like many apartments in Venice (I assume) there is a very noticeable slope to the floor in the living room. The furnishings, general appearance of the place, were nicer than I expected, with nice high, twelve foot or so ceilings, with nice plaster decorations and medallions.
You can view the apartment directly: Ca' Duca.
The reason to rent this apartment is for the grand canal balcony (which appears to be a rarity), which is just as advertised. If you check out the website, the views there are from the balcony. There's a nice teak picnic table, chairs and an umbrella. I was there in November, and still enjoyed a nice cup of coffee every morning, and a limoncello every evening, watching the canal. There is a traghetto stop at San Samuele, and it's a hoot to just watch it go back and forth. If you are considering this apartment, I recommend you buy Franzoi's "The Grand Canal" which is series of photos of every building on the Grand Canal, just so you can familiarize yourself with the view. (I brought it with me, just I could read up on the places across from us).
The furniture is okay, the kind of stuff you would expect to find in used furniture store. (I'm thinking here mostly of the chairs and couches in the living room). Very clean. This is not a big deal, but there are no English stations on the TV. Plenty of chairs. The living areas are large, well lit, comfortable and spacious.
The bedrooms are quite large, and had plenty of storage space. The upstairs bedroom is really more a small apartment of its own, with a bedroom and bathroom separated by a small sitting area. I should note that there are few if any windows on the second (fifth) floor, and the doorways are quite low (five feet or so). The only shower is upstairs, and it is very small. The downstairs bathroom has been recently remodeled and is quite nice (has a heated towel rack), but has a hand held sprayer instead of a shower.
The kitchen was fully equipped, stove, dishwasher, plenty of pots, pans, cutlery, glassware, etc. We were able to cook pretty elaborate meals without any difficulty (so oven, burners, all work). I would recommend learning how to make coffee using one of these stove top coffee makers before you go. When we arrived there was no food of any kind, but unless the owners threw it out, there is now a supply of salt/pepper and cooking oil.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
Views on Venice was very easy to work with. I was able to do everything I needed (up until the time I arrived at Marco Polo) on their website. I got quick responses to all of my emails. Their representative spoke great English, and gave us her cell phone number.
We paid €2250 for a week in November 2007.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I felt like I really wanted an apartment with a Grand Canal view, and this place had it. I would highly recommend this place to anyone who wants a big, spacious, charming apartment with a grand canal balcony. (It was nice in November, seems like it would be spectacular if the whether was warm). I would probably not stay here again, since having stayed here, I've gotten the "Grand Canal apartment" bug out of my system, and would probably stay in a more "neighborhood" style apartment in the Cannaregio or Castello district next time.
Things to do in this area
The routes between here and the Rialto Bridge, or St. Mark's square, have a lot of very high end shops.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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