If the world’s collection of new hotels have indicated anything, it’s that minimalism—quiet palettes, simplicity, and open floor plans—is having a moment.
After all, it’s easy on the eyes in a way that guests wanting to kick back can enjoy. However, there’s something to be said about opulence, which may not have gone anywhere but is back in a big way. Case in point: Venice, Italy’s Gritti Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel, whose interiors are a stunning display of tasteful maximalism that reflects the 15th-century structure’s storied history.
Commissioned in 1475 by the Doge of Venice, Andrea Gritti, the glimmering terracotta-colored palazzo became a luxury hotel in 1895. Perhaps most impressively, plenty of the original 19th-century details, including the Murano glass light fixtures, which range from ornate floral sconces throughout the lobby to ballroom-worthy chandeliers in the high-ceilinged suites.
If there can only be one area within the glamorous Venetian hotel that still feels like a classic Italian palace, it’s the suites—specifically the king-size one-bedroom corner suite with uninterrupted views of the iconic Grand Canal. The suite, swathed in robin’s egg-hued paint and an array of centuries-old portraits, includes a four-person breakfast table nestled between two Juliet balconies, a lavish sitting area, and a spacious bathroom clad entirely in dramatic Verde Indio marble. The corner suite is one of several dubbed Patron Grand Canal suites since they’re named after patrons of art and literature, including John Ruskin, Punta Della Dogana, and Angelo Donghia.
The hotel’s public spaces are just as lavish as the guest rooms. From the restaurant, which, during the warmer months, spills onto the outdoor terrace on the Grand Canal, to the library that houses one of the hotel’s centuries-old antiques (an English black and white case piece), each room is more enticing than the last.
But there’s something that feels undeniably comfortable about the hotel that was once home to the Vatican ambassadors to Venice. Gritti Palace’s not-so-subtle nod to a bygone era that celebrated wealth in a big way is transportive in more ways than one, and it’s certainly worth a visit.