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Venice wants to repopulate its city centre with freelancers and other remote workers

The Venywhere scheme is offering ‘concierge services’ to help newcomers settle in the city

Ed Cunningham
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Ed Cunningham
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Why on earth wouldn’t anyone want to live in Venice? It’s one of the world’s most gorgeous cities, filled with pretty canals, loads of art galleries – and historic architecture on every corner. Surely if more people thought they could live in La Serenissima, they probably would, right?

If you’re of that opinion, you’re in luck. The organisation Venywhere is trying to persuade digital nomads and others who can work from anywhere to move to the city and fill up its unused residential and commercial spaces.

The initiative was launched in December 2021 by Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and the Fondazione di Venezia, a cultural heritage organisation. It’s designed to entice people who can work from anywhere, like freelancers or remote office workers. However, it is also looking to get companies to send entire workforces to Venice for short periods. 

So, how is Venywhere trying to lure people over? Well, not with cash – unfortunately. The project is offering (paid) ‘concierge services’ to help new residents settle into the city. This will make settling in much easier, and range from language lessons to advice on shopping, healthcare and avoiding the hordes of tourists.

And if Venice is all a bit too touristy and watery for your tastes? There are other similar schemes in place around Italy. Be.Long launched in Florence in April last year, and also aims to repopulate (and rejuvenate) the city with a younger population.

All that being said, it really isn’t a bad time to be living in Venice. The recent banning of cruise ships from the centre and a new €5 tourist entry fee are both sure to make the city a much nicer place for locals.

So, what are you waiting for? If you’re interested in making the most of the Venywhere project, you can find out more on the official website.

Did you see that Airbnb wants someone to stay in this Sicilian townhouse rent-free for a year?

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