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Elizabeth Heath

Elizabeth Heath

Articles (6)

Where to stay in Venice to experience the city like a local

Where to stay in Venice to experience the city like a local

What does it mean to be a local in Venice? It isn’t as simple as ‘someone from the place’. People flock to the city for inspiration or riches, adding to a diverse bloodline that has helped shape the city into a magical place. The traders of yesteryear are now the tourists of today, with the latter outnumbering full-time residents by a figure that makes ‘outnumbering’ feel like an understatement.While experiencing Venice as a local is nigh-on impossible, visitors can put themselves in the locals' shoes by staying in a charming neighbourhood, one that offers something different to tourist-filled streets, from cosy restaurants to curious bars and beyond. Here's our list of the best neighbourhoods in Venice to book your stay in.  RECOMMENDED:🛏️ The best Airbnbs in Venice🏨 The best hotels in Venice

The 10 best things to do with kids in Venice

The 10 best things to do with kids in Venice

When you think of Venice – a visually mesmeric city nicknamed stuff like ‘Serenissima’ (ie. the ‘most serene’), ‘City of Water’ and ‘City of Masks’ – you don’t necessarily think of it being one of the world’s most kid-friendly destinations. But make no mistake: it absolutely is.   From its fascinating history to its iconic waterways, Venice is a virtual theme park of fascinating stuff to see and do – especially for kids. Gondolas, gilded attractions and picturesque streets are just a few things on offer here. Below is our lowdown of the best things to do in the Venetian capital avec the little ’uns.  RECOMMENDED: 📍 The best things to do in Venice🏛 The best museums in Venice🍴 The best restaurants in Venice🛶 How to experience Venice like a local

The 10 best beaches in Rome

The 10 best beaches in Rome

What is the first thing you think of when Rome is mentioned? Where to start? The iconic attractions will surely jump to mind, along with the romantic restaurants, tangible history and maybe even the thrilling nightlife. The beaches? Not the obvious connection, admittedly, but the Italian capital will surprise you. The best beaches in Rome are the perfect way to escape the crowds and get a bit of tanning in before hitting the clubs.Many of these options double up as charming day trips from the capital, day trips that bleed into the night when the open-air clubs start pumping out the tunes. Jump on the train, bring some snacks and don’t forget the sun cream.

The 10 best markets in Rome

The 10 best markets in Rome

Get your haggling face on, it is time to find a morning market bargain in the Eternal City. This place was built on trade (not technically true, but run with it), and the hustle and bustle of the best markets in Rome take some beating. You can get everything from antiques to zucchinis here. Heck, you might even find both at the same stall. Unlikely, but anything can happen in Rome. By ‘anything, we mean anything. A night on the tiles here is proof of that, and the day-to-day swagger of Roman life is something else entirely. Rome has no shortage of stupendous attractions, but there is something about its best markets that hits the spot.

Where to go shopping in Rome

Where to go shopping in Rome

Rome is a great place for splashing the cash. Maybe that should be flashing the plastic in the post-2020 world, but the idea remains the same. The Italian capital is a shopping heaven, a city of streets filled with celebrated fashion houses and wallet-friendly boutiques alike. Shopping is one of the best things to do in Rome, even if you aren’t going to buy anything, as the world of commerce is where this city breathes its most authentic breaths. This is all good and well, but the question remains; where to go shopping in Rome? We’ve got answers, plenty of them, covering everything from high end to second hand and plenty in between. The many streets and neighbourhoods of this most famous of cities are waiting for potential shoppers, so get to steppin’. Rome is a city of history, culture, and cuisine, and it is very much a city of shopping.  

12 cheap hotels in Venice for a budget-friendly getaway

12 cheap hotels in Venice for a budget-friendly getaway

Venice, Italy is often associated with exorbitant prices, from gondola rides—singing costs extra—to the news of a trio of British tourists charged €526 for lunch on Piazza San Marco. While there’s no doubt that Venetian restaurants and merchants are creative when it comes to finding ways to separate tourists from their euros, hotels in Venice offer a refreshing surprise. Thanks to a market oversaturated with Airbnbs and other non-hotel type lodgings, there are more beds than ever in Venice. For travelers, that means some true bargains can be found, particularly if you visit in the off-season or book at the last minute. Here are some of Time Out’s picks for the beast cheap hotels in Venice. Note that by "cheap" we don’t necessarily mean bargain-basement, but rather hotels which, based on some combination of location, amenities and vibe, offer great value in La Serenissima; leaving you with more cash to spend on the city’s top attractions, best restaurants and a tipple or two.

Listings and reviews (63)

Gritti Palace

Gritti Palace

In a palace first built in the 1400s for the Doge’s family and later a residence for the Popes, Gritti Palace Hotel today exudes history and understated elegance. Rooms, some overlooking the Grand Canal, are formal and elegant, with Murano glass fixtures, bespoke wall coverings and antique furnishings and paintings, while suites are over-the-top posh. Two restaurants offer gourmet Venetian cuisine and in the summertime there’s outdoor dining along the canal. The hotel’s Bar Longhi is a stop for fancy cocktails. A spa is open only to hotel guests. Time Out tip: Return home armed with a chef’s secrets for authentic Venetian cuisine by attending the Gritti Epicurean School, which includes a half-day cooking lesson and gourmet lunch. Nearby:Peggy Guggenheim Collection: For modern masterpieces just across the canalHarry’s Bar Cipriani: For the original Bellini cocktailSalita San Moise: For wall-to-wall designer shopping

Aman Grand Canal Venice

Aman Grand Canal Venice

George and Amal Clooney spent their wedding night at this ultra-luxurious 1500s palace hotel on the Grand Canal, so it’s probably safe to assume that it’s fancy enough for the rest of us. Even the most basic of rooms are anything but, with sleek midcentury modern furnishings set against vintage floors, wall coverings, ceiling paintings and in some cases, priceless works of art. Several rooms and suites have canal views. Food and drink options include a gourmet restaurant, a clubby bar, or a garden lounge for cicchetti and a spritz. Time Out tip: Room prices are sky-high, but consistent year-round. If you’re looking for a luxury Venice hotel in high season, you might find the best rates here. Nearby:Comune di Venezia: For the waterfront city hall where George and Amal tied the knowEstro: For modern cicchetti in a wine bar with a young, stylish vibeOsteria da Fiore: For Michelin-starred dining in a low-key setting

Ca’ Maria Adele

Ca’ Maria Adele

There’s more velvet, gilt and mood lighting in the 12 rooms of Ca Maria Adele than in most of the rest of Venice, as this boutique property makes no secret of the fact that it’s made for romance. Each room and suite has a playful title, like “dirty weekend” and a (unenforced) dress code—as in the “sumptuously naked” Doge’s Suite, with its wall-to-wall, blood-red décor. It’s clear this is not the place to bring the kids, but rather for a crazily romantic retreat in the heart of Italy’s most romantic city, where you don’t worry about the price tag. Time Out tip: The hotel’s minipalace is a deluxe apartment on three floors, with a private terrace overlooking La Salute and Giudecca island. Book it. Nearby:Santa Maria della Salute: For a look inside one of the most recognized churches on the Venice skylinePunta della Dogana: For a celebrated modern art collection in the former customs houseRistorante Riviera: For fine dining, heart-soaring views and attitude to spare

Palazzo Venart

Palazzo Venart

In a city of stone and brick built over water, gardens are a rarity, and Palazzo Venart has a delightful one right on the Grand Canal. Each room is different in this 15th-century palace, with décor themed to match an aspect of Venetian history and literature, and adorned with damask wall coverings, period artworks and Murano glass. Suites are befitting of royalty, and many have views of the Grand Canal. GLAM, the hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant, offers al fresco dining in good weather. It, along the GLAM bar, are open to non-hotel guests. Time Out tip: If you splurge on two nights in a luxury category suite, round-trip water taxi service from Santa Lucia station is included (or one-way from Venice’s Marco Polo Airport). Nearby:La Zucca: For elevated, much-celebrated, mostly vegetarian cuisineMocenigo Palace Museum: For a museum of fabric and costume, with an exhibit on the history of perfumeGelato di Natura: For innovative flavors and all-natural ingredients

Caffè Florian

Caffè Florian

From prime real estate on Piazza San Marco, in the shadow of the basilica and campanile (bell tower), Caffé Florian has been serving pricey drinks since 1720. Still, that’s no reason not to go there, as sipping a cappuccino or prosecco, either at one of the tables on the square is right up there with a gondola ride on the list of overpriced things you simply must do in Venice. Plus, the food and drinks are actually quite good. So resign yourself to the sticker shock and enjoy this only-in-Venice spectacle of white-jacketed waiters, silver tea trays and unabashed poshness. Time Out tip: When the live orchestra is playing at Caffé Florian’s piazza bandstand, you’ll be charged an additional cover of €6 per person to sit out front. Head to the bar inside to avoid the surcharge. Nearby:Giardini Reali: For a small patch of green space just around the corner from St. Mark’sMuseo Correr: For more than 500 years of Venetian history and culture, in a setting fit for kingsSan Zaccaria traghetto stop: For catching a boat to the beaches of Lido

La Biennale

La Biennale

Since its inception in 1895, the Venice Biennale has been one of the most important and influential events in international contemporary art. The visual art exhibit is held every two years in odd-numbered years, while in even-numbered years, the focus is on architecture. More than 70 countries have permanent pavilions at the Giardini della Biennale, the main event venue located on the SE end of the Castello district. Other events take place at the Venice Arsenal and at sites across the city. The biennale runs from May to November. Time Out tip: The biennale is vast, spread across dozens of pavilions, the Aresenal, palazzos, museums and public spaces throughout Venice. Don’t expect to see it all in even a few days and if there are installations you don’t want to miss, be sure to make a plan and map out your route in advance. Nearby:Ristorante Paradiso: For an Aperol Spritz and views to die for, right in the Biennale gardenVia Giuseppe Garibaldi: For restaurants galore and a slice of working-class VeniceParco delle Rimembranze: For a surprisingly tranquil green space steps from the national pavilions

Murano Glass Museum

Murano Glass Museum

In an elegant canalside palazzo, this museum comprehensively and elegantly recounts the history of glassmaking, with special emphasis on Roman glass, and how the artistry and technology developed in Venice. For example, did you know the first clear glass was invented on Murano, and not until the 1400s? Before you start shopping for glass on Murano, make the museum your first stop, to better understand the intricacies and process of the island’s handmade treasures. Time Out tip: Buy a combined ticket to the Murano Glass Museum and the Lace Museum on Burano, and save a few euros. Both museums are also included under the Venice Museum Pass. Nearby:Church of Santa Maria e San Donato: For 7th-century mosaics and dragon bonesVetreria Artistica Colleoni: For exquisite designs and glass-blowing demos La Perla Ai Bisatei: For casual dining elbow to elbow with local glassmakers

Carnevale

Carnevale

Almost every city in Italy celebrates Carnevale—the equivalent of Mardi Gras—in the two weeks leading up to Ash Wednesday, but no place does it with the pomp and pageantry of Venice. You’ll find costumed revelers heading to and from boat parades, street fairs and formal balls, and the atmosphere in the city is festive and a tad mischievous. The action centers around Piazza San Marco, but there are events in every sestiere. Carnevale dates vary from year to year, depending on the timing of Easter.  Time Out tip: Do Carnevale up right by buying a handmade mask from one of Venice’s dwindling number of authentic mask-making workshops—try Ca’ Macana or Ca’ del Sol for the real deal. Nearby:Attend a Costume Ball: For over-the-top glamour with a touch of Eyes Wide ShutBasilica San Marco: For Ash Wednesday services and post-festival atonementHotel Monaco Restaurant: For an uber-fancy meal, right on the Grand Canal

Ca’Bragadin Carabba

Ca’Bragadin Carabba

Casanova called this palace home while he carried on his trysts in 18th-century Venice, and while his rooms were probably slightly more grand than current ones at this budget hotel, the association with the notorious lothario is good fun all the same. Ca’Bragadin’s location, near the point where the San Marco, Cannaregio and Castello sestieri all meet, means you got both well-traveled and less-explored Venice right outside the door. Rooms, while not fancy, are bright and airy, and some are quite modern. Amenities include a tiny courtyard and free breakfast. Time Out tip: Economy rooms are a real bargain here, but note that while they have private bathrooms, facilities are not en suite Nearby:Santi Giovanni and Paolo church: For Doges’ tomb and a Veronese ceilingSuSo Gelatoteca: For artisanal gelato made with fresh, seasonal ingredientsLibreria Acqua Alta: For books piled everywhere in the “world’s most beautiful bookstore”

San Zaccaria

San Zaccaria

There’s been a church on this pretty square since the 600s, though the present Church of San Zaccaria dates to the late 15th century. The bones of Saint Zacharias (Zaccaria), the father of John the Baptist, still lie in this church, which was once the site of convent where the nuns, many of them daughters of the wealthy doges of Venice, weren’t exactly known for their purity and humble lifestyles. The 1505 altarpiece by Giovanni Bellini, Madonna Enthroned with Child and Saints is considered his finest work and a seminal example of the Venetian Renaissance. Pay a couple of euro extra to go down to the beautiful vaulted crypt, which contains the tombs of several doges and is permanently flooded. Time Out tip: Combine a trip to San Zaccaria with stops at several noteworthy churches in the same area, including the ornate, Greek Orthodox Chiesa San Giorgio dei Greci, Santa Maria della Pietà, where Vivaldi once gave music lessons, and San Giovanni in Bragora, to see altarpieces from Giambattista Cima. Nearby:Libreria Acqua Alta: For browsing the stacks in the “world’s most beautiful bookstore”Dal Moro's Fresh Pasta To Go: For elevated carry-out pasta with made-to-order saucesMagie di Carnevale: For handmade dolls, carnival masks and costumes

Antico Forno

Antico Forno

The menu is short at Antico Forno, the ambiance is of shoebox proportions and service may be brusque—that is if you can elbow your way to the counter, past all the Instagrammers snapping photos of the archetypally awesome pizza served whole or by the slice here, but always to-go. “Pizzaccia” is a thick chunk of lofty focaccia bread overflowing with pizza toppings, or you can get a regular thin pie or an overstuffed panino (sandwich). This is good, honest grub at fair prices. Time Out tip: Venice suffers from a dearth of public places to sit down, and Antico Forno has a tiny, SRO dining area. So make your purchase, then walk about 4 minutes WSW to Campo San Polo, where you might be lucky enough to snag a park bench on which to enjoy your meal. Nearby:Cantina Do Moro: For wine and cicchetti in a legendary Venetian hole-in-the-wallRialto Bridge: For swoon-worthy views of the most famous of the Grand Canal bridgesScuola Grande di San Rocco: For Tintoretto paintings in a dazzlingly ornate setting

Oltre il Giardino

Oltre il Giardino

Austrian-born socialite and widow of the famous composer Gustav Mahler, Alma Mahler was a muse to some of the early 20th-century’s most influential artists. Behind an unmarked door at the of a dead-end canalside street, her former home and idyllic garden are now a high-end boutique hotel, and form a quiet oasis in the middle of busy San Polo. The six bright, tranquil rooms are relatively unadorned, with a mix of modern and more traditional décor. All have views of the garden, where breakfast is served in good weather. Time Out tip: Suites have separate bedrooms, and sleeping areas with sofa beds, making them a great option—and good value—for families. Nearby:Campo San Polo: For relaxing and people-watching on one of Venice’s largest squaresBasilica dei Frari: For Titian’s tomb and one of Venice’s major basilicasIl Mercante: For craft cocktails among the beautiful people

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