Venice lodge Ca’ di Dio provides the type of welcome that makes the standard go back to shuttle really feel glorious. Scudding around the Venetian lagoon from the airport and stepping without delay from the boat into the lodge’s aspect front is a dream switch. However no matter your mode of arrival, if you’re inside of Ca’ di Dio, Patricia Urquiola’s vibrant and richly textured inside design, the artisanship of Italian makers equivalent to Murano glassblowers, Molteni & C and Rubelli, and a very hot and comfortable option to five-star hospitality make it transparent why this renovated former monastery has grow to be a sought-after Venetian retreat since its opening in past due 2021.
The lagoon-facing web site in Castello, at the fringe of Arsenale, is tricky to overcome. The ones making plans a commute to the 18th Venice Structure Biennale (20 Would possibly to 26 November 2023), or artwork’s sixtieth Venice Biennale in 2024, keep in mind. From the lodge, a ten-minute walk alongside the waterfront takes you to the Giardini della Biennale. Stroll ten mins in the other way, in the meantime, and also you’re in Saint Mark’s Sq..
However a part of Ca’ di Dio’s appeal is the tranquillity that lies in the back of its enigmatic façade, providing break out from town thrum, regardless of the goal of your consult with.
The development dates from the thirteenth century and, in previous lives, has afforded refuge to, variously, pilgrims, ‘fallen’ girls and the aged. These days, after a two-year renovation for lodge team V Retreats that was once finished in 2021 and has maintained the integrity of the ancient construction, a way of monastic calm endures to greet the fresh traveller.
No signal proclaims the lodge. Its external, a discreet putty hue consistent with heritage pointers and decided on to subtly trade with the sunshine all the way through the process the day, is dotted with home windows of their unique dimension and positions.
Patricia Urquiola’s interiors at Ca’ di Dio
Step within the curved sliding doorways into the foyer and you end up in a former chapel. Right here, Urquiola’s vibrant include kicks in. ‘While you input, you spot the particularity,’ says lodge director Christophe Mercier, including that Urquiola’s design temporary was once to create now not a lodge, however ‘a large area’.
Sinuous couches sit down underneath a dramatic chandelier, comprising 14,000 items of Murano glass and equivalent to sails. In a nook, a winged armchair provides an enveloping hug. At the flooring lies a textured rug. Richly hued Murano glass lamps, the primary of many during the lodge, crafted via glass manufacturing facility LP, forged a heat glow. A restored vintage butcher’s desk is temptingly scattered with coffee-table tomes.
The homely really feel continues within the adjoining ‘studying room’, covered with picket cabinets stuffed with books and gadgets, as though from a private assortment. The terrazzo Veneziana flooring – laid via hand, bar ultimate machine-polishing, right here and during, says Mercier, who scattered probably the most stones himself – is mimicked via tradition, terrazzo-style wallpaper at the ceiling. Fragrances via native perfumer Service provider of Venice – which additionally provides the signature merchandise for the lodge spa – infuse the room. It’s a comfy space wherein to chill out and skim, or arrange brief workspace (if handiest to test that your out-of-office is firmly on).
The lodge’s 3 storeys wrap round a chief central courtyard (there are two extra), the place a garden is laid across the unique stone paths and neatly, and two present fingers, and Urquiola’s capacious outside furnishings items be offering a retreat inside of a retreat.
The 66 rooms, together with 9 suites, are set alongside corridors that retain unique integrated stone benches – albeit softened with a cushion for the relief of recent posteriors. Within the rooms themselves, with furnishings items designed via Urquiola and personalized via Molteni & C, it’s comfortable edges, heat hues and wealthy textures the entire approach.
Lagoon-inspired blues and vegetables combine with earthy terracotta. The partitions, in a mottled aqua that inspires watery reflections, characteristic wallpaper created particularly for Ca’ di Dio via Rubelli. Tactile main points abound. A Carrara marble bedside desk includes a leather-based tab to drag out its draw. The mattress’s upholstered headboard is multi-layered, a cushioned backrest reputedly striking from comfortable leather-based straps whilst ‘wings’ are reasonably angled at all sides ‘to provide that component of cocooning’, says Mercier. Reflected surfaces within the room are in smoked and mottled glass, making for comfortable and delicate fairly than in-your-face reflections – ‘So you’ll see your self with out actually seeing your self,’ he causes.
Bogs characteristic Carrara marble vainness gadgets, and extra Murano glass lamps, whilst easy, mottled crimson partitions evoke the light grandeur of most of the Venetian constructions outdoor.
At the sensible aspect, there’s a walk-in closet, a hidden-from-view espresso maker, kettle, teas and mini bar – and a superfluous TV. If you’ll declare a lagoon view room, sitting again at the pillowy mattress and taking a look out to the water, the sky, and the island of San Giorgio Maggiore in-between must suffice.
Trumping even that view, the lodge’s two ‘altana’, or rooftop-terrace, suites boast the lofty, conventional Venetian picket decks – from the place chances are you’ll see ‘on a just right day, the Dolomites’, says Mercier.
Eating: a style of Veneto
Eating at Ca’ di Dio follows the lodge’s ethos of sourcing from the area anyplace imaginable, and embraces a kitchen lawn and all issues do-it-yourself. On the Alchemia bar, chances are you’ll check out the lodge’s personal gin, distilled the usage of herbs and salt from the lagoon, and make a choice from gentle foods and snacks, from panini to chichetti (Venetian tapas). Breakfast is served on the casual Essensia, which seems out onto the interior courtyard (the fruit salads are in particular scrumptious).
And nice eating eating place Vero (its title a contraction of ‘Venetian Roots’) is without equal party of native produce and delicacies. It provides indoor in addition to outside, lagoon-facing seating. Within, diners are ensconced in but extra Urquiola-designed convenience, underneath her food-themed ceiling fresco that’s bursting with as a lot contemporary produce as govt chef Raimondo Squeo’s kitchen. Vero’s menu spans dishes equivalent to slow-poached mountain egg with cannellini beans cream, contemporary spinach and black truffle; do-it-yourself linguine with turnip vegetables, clams and lemon; in addition to vegan and gluten-free choices, and regarded as wine pairings served in Murano glassware.
Journeys and stories
Staring at grasp glassblowers at paintings at the island of Murano – a possibility to look simply how all that glassware got here to be, and naturally to buy – is amongst more than a few journeys presented via Ca’ di Dio. Quite extra quirky, and most likely interesting to would-be foragers, is an opportunity to find the Venetian lagoon from the point of view of charismatic native botanist Gabriele Bisetto (who’s in the back of the lodge’s planting and has a hand in its gin), and the way it influences the lodge’s delicacies. In his utilitarian flat-bottomed boat, he’ll wend his approach round islands equivalent to Torcello, pausing to grasp sprigs of crops so that you can odor or style, and mining his huge wisdom of native natural world to regale you. There’s a prevent at the island of Burano, its few streets covered with rows of brightly painted, Insta-perfect properties.
Ca’ di Dio, Riva Ca’ di Dio 2183, 30122 Venice, vretreats.com (opens in new tab)