Here are some of our Venetian adventures and hopefully this give you a taste of the city and helps you plan your next adventure to the city.
Venice is a beautiful city and it’s all about the canals, essentially city, man-made built on stilts on the lagoon.
It’s tacky and touristy, but there is no better way to explore the canals that via the Gondola. It’s so beautiful.
Cocktails at the Hotel Monaco
A former “Ridotto” in 1638, this hotel is perched on the Grand Canal. Opt for some nibbles and a cocktail before dinner. It’s quite a serene location.
If one is in Venice, one must visit Harry’s Bar. Here’s a little history of the bar:
In the fall of 1929, Giuseppe Cipriani, a barman at the Hotel Europa in Venice met an American student named Harry. Harry was a regular at the bar (Harry was actually in Venice to cure his alcoholism). Giuseppe had serious doubts spending time in Venice would cure him, as he spent entire days at the bar in Hotel Europa. Harry fell out with his aunt (who was funding his drinking habits). Harry stopped drinking and strapped for cash, Harry hit Cipriani up for 10,000 lire.
Cipriani loaned him the funds and Harry disappeared. Cipriani was worried that he’d never see his money again. However, Harry returned in February 1930, and he not only repaid Cipriani but offered to put up 40,000 lire for the pair to set up their own place. He asked for the place to be called Harry’s Bar.
The following year they opened Harry’s Bar in an old warehouse at near the Piazza San Marco. The decor was nautical and simple, the service elegant but seemingly effortless. And writers and other tastemakers found it a comfortable watering hole. By the 1950s Harry’s Bar had become a place where European nobility and other jetsetters mingled (Charlie Chaplin, Ernest Hemmingway, Noel Coward to name a few).
Harry’s Bar was so integral to fabric of Venice, that when World War II ended, the U.S. commander of the Allied forces summoned Cipriani and told “You are not a good Italian,” Cipriani worried, responded “Why?” he asked. “Because you have not reopened Harry’s Bar.” Harry’s Bar has prided itself on service and today is no different.
We stop by and have the Bellini (which was invented here). The beautiful grainy sweet textured aperitif is perfect, especially with the salinity of the Italian olives. We enjoy the beautiful nautical thematic of the bar and the crowd chatter. It’s such a beautiful bar.
Pizza & Pasta
There’s plenty of pizza and pasta in Venice but do hunt around for those hidden in back streets, the more non-descript the better. Examine the wine list, order well and enjoy!
This cafe was established in 1720 and is the oldest coffee house in continuous operation in Italy, and one of the oldest in the world. It’s worth heading there to have a quick coffee during your daily exploration of the city.
A visit to Italy is not complete without gelato, so grab this milky treat and enjoy it with the sunset on the grand canal.