Winter Break 2013: Venetian living

I mentioned in an earlier post that we have a fabulous flat in Venice. Per numerous requests, here are some photos of it:

Just off a square, there’s this locked gate:

Then you walk down this alley:

And you unlock this door:You’ll find yourself in the foyer of an old building:

To the left is the door to a small garden, from which there’s also an access door to the canal.

To the right, you go up a few flights of stairs to the flight. The staircase has a little natural light from windows on one side. Originally, there would have been an open space in the middle of the stairs, so that you could see up or down, but now there’s an elevator shaft filling that space.

Because of the elevator, the stairwell now ranges from dim to totally dark. There are lights, but they are on timers. If they go out while you’re walking up, just look for a small glowing button by any of the apartment doors and push it. The lights will come on long enough for you to make it to your flat.

When you do get to the flat, you’ll find that it has been renovated and has all the mod cons.

The first room is the kitchen:

The kitchen is well stocked, including a good pasta pot, a panini maker, and a Parmesan grater. Priorities, yo. The fridge is hidden in that tall cabinet in the left corner and the dishwasher and washing machine are camouflaged behind other cabinets.

From the kitchen, you walk into the living room:

In the second photo, there’s a small balcony off to the left. Here’s a shot of it I took from the kitchen window:

In the warm months, there’s cafe furniture set up. If I lived here, I’d have loads of plants out there.

And here’s the view from the window in the living room:

That’s the courtyard that is accessed from the foyer.

Take a look at the shutters on the windows in the photo above, as well as the one of the balcony. They’re on all the windows in our flat too, and I’ve seen them on pretty much every residential building in the city. They are heavy wood and apparently people shut them for privacy and for insulation. They darken a room effectively, that’s for sure.

From the living room, there’s a small hall, with this bedroom on the left:

This room is large, with an entire wall of amazing built-in closets and drawers. Because there are two twin beds in there, you will naturally give this room over to your teenagers.

Across the hall from the large bedroom is a nice, but cozy bathroom. I didn’t take any photos that turned out well, so trust me when I tell you that the bathroom is very modern and very well done, including a wonderful heated towel rack.

At the end of the hall is this cozy bedroom, which is about half the size of the other one:

This room, though small, is very comfortable. Even better, it has a huge bathroom that is modern and sleek. Think slate floors and walls, a large walk-in shower with a glass wall, and a heated towel rack.

The walls and ceiling of this bedroom are painted trompel’oeil to look like you are in a pavilion or tent:

The windows look out a different direction than the other bedroom and into a different garden:

When I am in bed at night, I can hear boats on the canal just outside, church bells ringing, and seagulls. Italian seagulls sound different from American ones. I can’t explain it, but I’m pretty sure they’re seagull-talking in Italian. You can tell they are gesticulating wildly with their wings while they communicate with their friends.

So that’s the flat. We found it on Airbnb and highly recommend it. Actually, we recommend both: the flat and Airbnb.

We’re headed to Munich today. I’ll talk to you all again soon.



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6 Responses to Winter Break 2013: Venetian living

  1. ~annie says:

    I’ve been loving your vacation posts! I’ve been to some of these places and it brings back great memories. Say hello to München for me. I used to work in the hotel right beside the Isartor near the heart of downtown, not too far from the Hofbräuhaus. The Deutsches Museum just across the Isar river is wonderful, as is the nearby Volksbad if you in the mood for a swim.

  2. I think the idea of a flat rather than a hotel is great, especially with a family. You have gotten quite professional with your trip planning!!

  3. Smalltown Me says:

    Italian seagulls. Naturalmente.

  4. Aunt Snow says:

    Lovely, lovely, lovely! Our flat in Venice was wonderful, too. We were in San Polo right near the fish market. Airb&b is a great option.

  5. Amazing-what a cool place to stay and feel ITALIAN!

  6. bdaiss says:

    Catching up on my reading after some much needed disconnect time. What a lovely flat.
    One of my comments upon returning from Italy: I know why Italian girls have such skinny legs. It’s from all the squatting they do in the gross public restrooms! Hope you’re finding more, ahem, cleanly accommodations. I do remember the hotel/flat restrooms as being modern but compact. :)

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