This weekend we made a pilgrimage back to our favorite island in the Venetian Lagoon – Burano.
One reason it is special is that it takes a little work to get there.
We have to walk to Fondamente Nova – the quay on the other end of town and the board a vaparetto for about a 40-minute ride out in the lagoon.
But it is so worth it.
They are famous for lace – and have the best source of scarves anywhere. If you know me, you know this is my jam! I always stock up. Each shop is a little different – from everyday scarves to colorful scarves to handmade heirloom-quality scarves. Here is me – very happy with my newly-acquired scarves. : )
My favorite shop is Martina Vidal. They are especially meaningful to me because they helped me put together my wedding dress when we eloped in Venice 7 years ago. We went back and forth to Burano many times that trip for fittings.
In our last post, I promised pictures of the most outstanding feature of our new apartment – the amazing glass.
Our apartment is called “Venini.” We did not understand the significance of that when we booked. When we arrived, we discovered absolutely beautiful glass sculptures, vases, and bowls. Most of it is under lock and key. We were mesmerized.
We met the owner (he dropped by with the Italian plumber after we discovered a leak in the radiator – another story), who proudly told us the glass was from his personal collection and is Venini (a big deal!).
Venini is one of the oldest and most famous glass families on Murano. www.venini.com
The Venini Fornace (kiln) was founded by Paolo Venini in 1921. Since then, they have added other artists to their collection and trained numerous glassmakers, including the American glassmaker, Chihuly. Their pieces are found in opera houses, museums, and hotels all over the world.
And every day we get to wake up to our own personal gallery!
Then there is my favorite art installation.
Do you see it? The balloon?
It is glass and hangs by an invisible thread from the ceiling.
The owner told me it is a Di Marchi (another big deal!).
Livio Di Marchi is an avante garde artist in Venice, whose designs are whimsical and usually on a large scale. One of his recent noteworthy ventures was floating a wooden violin-shaped barge down the Grand Canal with a string quartet playing Vivaldi. It was meant to signify the re-birth of Venice after the pandemic. Check out this video:
He did a series of balloons, and a signed De Marchi balloon is rare and no longer for sale. There are lots of smaller copies in the shops, but we have an original.
All of this has certainly spiced up my Zoom background on work calls!
We are back in one of our very favorite spots – where we were married 7 years ago and have been back to many times. During COVID, we dreamed of this day.
We arranged a private water taxi to whisk us from the airport to the dock closest to our house – the San Samuele vaparetto stop.
The vaparetto stop, on the Grand Canal close to the Accademia Bridge, anchors one end of our street – Salizada San Samuele.
At the other end is a delightful trattoria and alimentari (little grocery store) that has the most amazing pesto fresca (fresh pesto) I’ve ever tasted. They have a bowl of it and you order by showing with your fingers if you want a poco or molto (more).
Our street is a “salizada” which means a main paved thoroughfare –
This is as opposed to a “calle,” which also dead-ends into our building from a different direction.
This is our building – we are on the top floor.
Our house number is 3153.
Each sestiere (district) in Venice numbers its doors in order. We are in San Marco sestiere. So the house numbers are not by street, but district. The address includes the street so you have a place to start. Our address is Salizada San Samuele, Sestiere San Marco 3153, Venezia.
On the next blog, I’ll take you inside. But here’s a view from the top!
Today I am just posting pictures of boats. We are amazed at how many boats go by each day.
The Seine really is a working river.
We see the usual dinner cruises.
But also lots and lots of barges, some with cars on top – we aren’t sure how they get them down. We also see the Paris version of the Coast Guard now and then – called sapeur pompier seine maritime (Seine Fire Brigade).
And of course our favorite Batobus – the water taxi that we take everywhere (we bought the annual pass).
And my favorite – the Alain Ducasse dinner cruise (he’s’ a very famous chef). We didn’t even know about this one until they went by – will be on our list for next time!
I love sitting at the dining room table working and watching the world go by on the water.