Bauer II Palazzo
The Bauer II Palazzo is a truly traditional and authentic venetian hotel. There are actually two Bauer Hotels connected to each other in Venice. The Bauer II Palazzo is the traditional venetian option, with views across the lagoon, a magnificent Grand Canal facade and traditionally dressed rooms. The Bauer L’Hotel is the modern build (very unusual in venice) with contemporary venetian design. In one photo below you can see how the two hotels meet each other architecturally. They both share a beautiful terrace bar and restaurant with views across the canals, the lagoon and to Santa Maria della Salute. The view is so remarkably uncommon, you feel you are in a movie set, although many hotels face the canal, very few have outdoor space at ground level. It makes every meal a cultural treat. These views are also enjoyed from the rooms, framed beautifully by the original glass windows. The rooms are decorated in a comfortable if venerably grand style, using traditional silks, Murano glass light fittings and furniture. I loved waking up to light streaming through the huge windows and breakfast in bed. The bacon was sublime! The room numbers I recommend are 105, 206 and 750.
Baglioni Hotel Luna
The Baglioni is in a to-die-for location. Taking up a whole block (if you can call it that in Venice!) on one side connecting to Harry’s Bar and the other to San Marco Square. Everything is within easy walking distance (although taking the vaporetto is one of my favourite way to see the city). The staff are utterly charming and full of helpful and interesting local information. The restaurant serves traditional venetian fair, which I really enjoyed. The pasta was particularly good. Breakfast is served in a beautiful large hall, which is covered in paintings, the ceiling with beautiful troupe-l’oeil and mythological scenes. In the past few years the hotel has been renovating the rooms, which means that they are beautifully luxurious and fresh now, still using traditional materials and styles though. Many of the rooms have original works of art and antique furniture. The views from most of the rooms are across one of Venice’s few parks, Palace Gardens, and the lagoon. The location and the huge knowledge of the staff (they helped us find a glass lantern shop my mother visited 15 years ago) are what make this hotel so remarkable and uncommon. The rooms I recommend 409, Paolo Veronese Suite and Vecellio Tiziano Suite.