The Gritti Palace, Venice, Italy

The Gritti Palace, Venice, Italy

A Venetian institution, The Gritti Palace draws discerning travellers with its 15th-century charm and views across the Grand Canal. Thanks to its state-of-the-art spa and Italian menus, it’s the perfect base for exploring La Serenissima – so long as you finish the day with cocktails on Bar Longhi’s famed terrace.

Gritti Palace is nothing short of a Venetian institution.
During the city’s big-name events – the Venice Biennale, Venice
Film Festival, et al. – the global beau monde fills the rooms of
this 15th-century palazzo. And it’s no surprise. The Gritti stands
proudly opposite the famous Santa Maria della Salute church on the
Grand Canal – you’ll be hard-pressed to find a hotel with a better

The palazzo takes its name from the 16th-century Doge Andrea
Gritti, though it was built in 1475. Thankfully for us, it became a
hotel in 1895 and, after a £40 million revamp, entered the 21st
century. Designer Chuck Chewning kept much of the hotel’s original
charm by way of antiques, Murano-glass chandeliers and frescoes –
the only reminder that you’re in today’s world are subtle mod cons
such as high-speed WiFi, good climate control (necessary during a
scorching Venetian summer) and a state-of-the-art spa.


The Gritti Palace does not feel like your average Marriott,
thanks to its well-preserved old-world charm and no-expenses-spared
decor. No two rooms are alike, each varying in size and with its
own medley of antiques, Rubelli fabrics, frescoes and Bang &
Olufsen speakers. The bathrooms, clad tip-to-toe in coloured marble
and stocked with Acqua di Parma toiletries, are equally opulent –
some suites even have a bath in the main room. If you can, ask for
a room or suite facing the Grand Canal, though the views from the
others aren’t too bad; they overlook a courtyard or a smaller,
tributary canal. Top tip: bring an eye-mask as the light from the
thermostat is a little bright.

What’s for breakfast?

This is no quick pit stop. Eaten on the terrace (weather
permitting), breakfast at The Gritti serves everything that you’d
expect from a top-tier hotel. Begin with a small buffet of fresh
juices, cheeses, cold cuts and pastries before ordering something
more substantial from the kitchen. If you have a room facing the
Grand Canal, you might be hard-pressed to leave that you opt for a
private breakfast with the best view in town.

How about lunch and dinner?

The interiors of Club del Doge restaurant are as luxurious as
any of the other rooms at The Gritti, though you can also choose to
sit on the splendid terrace of the Bar Longhi. The menu has many
Italian classics such as prosciutto e melone and also some great
comfort eats – our club sandwich went down particularly well. The
ingredients are high quality and many of the vegetables come from
the hotel’s private garden on an island in the lagoon. After
something extra special? Chef Daniel Turco can whip up a bespoke
tasting menu.

Is there a bar?

The Bar Longhi – or, more specifically, the terrace at Bar
Longhi – is the place to see and be seen, especially during the
Venice Film Festival and Biennale, when it’s notoriously difficult
to find a spot.


A strikingly modern spa in collaboration with Sisley Paris
offers treatments in single and double suites at surprisingly
reasonable prices (a full-leg wax is €55). After a session on the
Technogym equipment, we like letting off steam in the hammam.

The concierge is very responsive and can help you source tickets
for attractions ahead of your stay or snag tables in the best
restaurants in town. Epicurean guests will want to check out the
cooking classes at The Gritti Epicurean School, too.

Things you should know

The hotel invested in high-water protection, which makes it
particularly resilient to flooding. Inside, you can hop from floor
to floor via the lift. Six of the Gritti’s rooms are adapted for
those with disabilities.

Consider this more of a romantic getaway than the first choice
for families; nothing here is specifically child-friendly. That
being said, families are welcome and can stay in connecting

Within a short walk, you can find…

The ruckus of St Mark’s Square is little more than a five-minute
walk away, while you’ll be on the Rialto Bridge in 15. A €2 gondola
ride (there’s a station next door) will also take you to the Peggy
Guggenheim Collection and the church of Santa Maria della

Discover More
Le Sirenuse, Positano, Italy