Guide to Celebrating a Special Day in Venice

In this article we share our answers to readers’ questions when it comes to “celebrating in Venice”. We suggest locations to celebrate your birthday(s), meeting a long-desired goal or just celebrating the fact that you are in Venice! We have collected a few ideas for you to include Venice in your celebration, making sure you savor her unique lifestyle and authentic Venetian food.

Spring is dedicated to celebrating Venice herself, by the way. We celebrate her birthday on 25 March and this is followed by both the Catholic and Greek Easter celebrations. Finally, we celebrate the Patron Saint of Venice, Saint Mark, on 25 April. You can read more about the upcoming spring events in this article.

Our criteria for choosing locations (hotels, venues, restaurants) are Venetian ownership, carefully cultivating Venetian style, interiors and gardens. We have selected a mix of luxury and affordable authentic Venetian examples. As always, we are sharing our personal opinion and we are not getting paid for recommending any of these places. Now enjoy nine spring-fresh venues !

Palazzo Nani Bernardo – Brunch in the Garden. If you love brunch, opulent palace gardens, exotic plant species, roses, palm trees and wisteria, then this is the garden we suggest you visit, not only in spring. But then, in the second half of April, the oldest wisteria plant in Venice, covering the courtyard of the palace, will be in bloom. This garden also hosts the tallest palm tree in Venice :-) Click here for their website.

Al Giardinetto da Severino – Dinner in the Palace Garden: Imagine dinner in a 15th century palace garden which also hosts an art exhibition from time to time? April and May are perfect for lunch in this green chiaroscuro environment, at one of the tables arranged below climbing uva fragola vines. Food is based on family recipes, and as they are friends of 70 years of Nonna Lina’s, she’s shared some recipes with them. For example, try the tagolioni ai granchi – crab tagliolini :-) Click here to visit the website.

Giardino Vivaldi – Hotel Metropole – Spritz in the Citrus Garden. If you love citrus trees enveloped in scented clouds of white blossoms, this is the place to go to in spring. Both garden and restaurant were laid out in the Levantine style, so this hotel represents an ambassador of what opulent Venetian interiors and gardens looked like 500 years ago. Amongst agaves and rosemary bushes, you can enjoy your spritz – or even breakfast – in the garden bordering on Calle Pietà. Spitz is flavored with seasonal fruit and there’s always pomegranate juice :-) And yes, this is the garden in which Vivaldi composed some of his works ! Click here to view the website.

Il Ridotto. Green Lagoon Kitchen. The owners love foraging in the Lagoon as you can see above, and there’s no other restaurant in Venice so keen on harvesting and using local herbs to create gourmet experiences. The owner and chef uses Lagoon herbs collected on the barene (sandbanks) of the northern Lagoon, silene and salicornia, so succulent in spring. So here’s the choice for you if you want to taste the Lagoon on your plate :-) Click to view their website.

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#foraging day From the venetian lagoon

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They have also created a dessert called Terra di Venezia – flavors of Venice which makes you literally “inhale and taste” the Lagoon. And they serve panna cotta with miele di barena – honey produced on the Lagoon islands. This is a rather pricey restaurant but they do offer a tasting menu for lunch at under EUR 30 per person. In the evening, the flames of candles against the reddish brick stone walls takes you back to the Venice of times long past.

Luna Sentada – Candlelight Dinner for Adventurers: It’s a great wine bar that developed into a low-key luxury restaurant. Luxury shows in the details like table linen and finest Murano glass, and of course in the colors of the interiors and high-quality food, recalling the Venetian enoteche of the past. What’s more, come spring, their tables are arranged alongside a cool canal called Rio di San Severo. Sitting here on a warm spring evening will regale you the scent of the fruit tree blossoms hiding behind red brick walls on the other side of the canal. Medium-priced menus, you will have to reserve a table in advance as this is a favorite place for candlelight dinners al fresco. Click here to discover their website and menu.

Bistrot de Venise. The Forgotten Flavors of the Republic of Venice. My personal favorite for several reasons (La Venessiana, exploring the ancient scents of Venice, simply must love it :-) ). This is the only restaurant in Venice fully staging the culinary experience of the Republic of Venice. They re-create the sweet-sour combinations of Levantine cooking enhanced by luxurious spices and local herbs. Medium-priced, and you can also enjoy the golden Doge’s wine with your food. I love their desserts which combine flavors of fruit, spices and precious blossoms, like this one you can see below. It’s lavender-flavored biscuits enhanced with summer berries, pine nuts and lavender-flavored panna cotta, sprinkled with cinnamon and cardamom. All food served here is based on the recipes currently hiding on forgotten bookshelves in Venice (Nonna Lina’s and my resolution is to bring more of these back to life again, by the way …) Here you can view their website.

Hotel Casa Verardo – A Venetian Moon Garden. White fluffy blossoms. Pink hortensia and red-golden tulips in March and April. This hidden courtyard garden, just ten minutes from Piazza San Marco, will show you what life in a hortus conclusus was like. It has its own pozzo (well) and you can enjoy the soft spring evenings amidst an explosion of flowers. Here’s their website.

Ca’ Favretto – Grand Views and Expectations. This is a former private home boasting a grand breakfast room overlooking the Grand Canal. Opposite, you can make out one of the most beautiful garden jewels in Venice, Giardino Levi Morenos. Step out on the balcony and enjoy the view of Ca d’Oro and the Fish Market. A taste of noble life on the Grand Canal, and it does take you back in time, if it weren’t for the vaporetti :-) Click here to visit their website.

Hotel Giorgione – Oriental Garden Scents. An overlooked and little known garden is hiding behind the façade of a group of buildings located just two minutes from Campo SS Apostoli. As its walls are clad with real jasmine. By the way, this is an affordably priced four-star hotel which also gives you the benefit of a swimming pool in the midst of Venice and a few more things to discover. PS – if you love cats, I think you will love this place. Click here to visit the website.

You can also download this post here as pdf guide and take it with you when you go to Venice! Just click on the image below !


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  1. mvaden1948 wrote:

    Simply lovely!
    I have been to the beautiful Luna Sentada to celebrate my birthday when it was on 12-12-12. I was treated like a combination of a visiting princess and an old family friend. It helped that my landlord had called the owner and told him about me.
    It was a wonderful evening.

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
    • Iris wrote:

      Grazie Michelle! yes, I remember that you’ve been there! A nice place to celebrate one’s birthday! Love sitting outside next to the canal in spring. it’s just three minutes from Grandmother Lina’s home :-)

      Posted 4.7.18 Reply
  2. Carly | wrote:

    FYI – It took a super-long time for the page to load – you might want to try optimizing some of your images. The ones that did load for me were absolutely beautiful!

    Posted 4.7.18 Reply
    • Iris wrote:

      Hello Carly, thanks for telling me. It’s the lazy load effect WordPress offers to self-hosted websites. I switched it off now, and hopefully it works better now.

      Posted 4.7.18 Reply

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