The Most Serene Republic of Venice
A city born of the sea, Venice has preserved the enchanting palaces and lavish mansions of its glorious past alongside an equally alluring lifestyle.
The name alone evokes the absolutely extraordinary. Everyone aspires to come to Venice, and all those who have already made the trip to this Italian wonderland dream only of one thing: of returning again and again and again. No city in the world is so well known and yet so secret. Venice reveals itself, but also likes to keep its mysteries. Getting lost in the maze of narrow streets and bridges, you think you know, you recognize a square, but no, you discover another that you did not suspect existed.
Set in a lagoon that at times shimmers so much that clouds appear illuminated by it, Venice was built between water, earth, and sky, and to properly observe it you must take a vaporetto. In this city without cars, gondoliers nonchalantly navigate its channels. They have all the time in the world, allowing you to marvel at the facades of Byzantine, Gothic, Classical or Renaissance palaces that float before your eyes like paintings in a gallery. Sleep in the same hotel, the same room, as Henry James, Alma Mahler, or Prokofiev, and share a plate of scampi with the fishermen from Burano Venice is as populist as it is aristocratic. Everyone knows everyone, everyone talks with everyone, and, here, even the cats and pigeons get along.
Venice is also the rendezvous for lovers, seen kissing under the Bridge of Sighs and embracing on the Piazza San Marco. A little anecdote brings us closer, a little, just a little, to the quintessence of this city full of wonders: At four in the morning, a stranger asks a Venetian about the way back to his hotel. The man reflects for a moment and replies: 'The shortest or the most beautiful?'
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© Text and photography courtesy of EnVols