Venetian resident Peter Lauritzen offers an original view of Venice exploring in depth, both on foot and by boat, some of the city’s magnificent churches including San Giorgio Maggiore and Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, architectural masterpieces such as Palazzo Mocenigo, and leading galleries such as the Gallerie dell’Accademia.
Staying at the luxurious Westin Europa & Regina Hotel close to St. Mark’s Square, there will be an exclusive private evening viewing of the great 11th century Basilica of Saint Mark, one of the most iconic sights in Venice, and a private drinks reception and dinner at a private Palazzo overlooking the Grand Canal, by special arrangement.
London / Venice
Depart London Gatwick on a lunch time British Airways flight to Venice. On arrival transfer by private motor launch to the 5-star Westin Europa & Regina Hotel, where four nights are spent. Situated in the heart of historic Venice overlooking the Grand Canal and a short walk from Piazza San Marco, the hotel is housed in an elegant 17th century palace.
An introduction to the tour by guest lecturer Peter Lauritzen. Early evening enter St. Mark’s Basilica for a spectacular private visit to Venice’s most famous church to see the illuminated mosaics and the Pala d’Oro (subject to confirmation). Dinner at the hotel.
This morning, leave the hotel on foot to visit the cloister of the Doge’s chaplain at St. Apollonia. Continue to see the masterpieces of the Scuola di Murano in the San Tarasio Chapel at San Zaccaria. Walk to the surprisingly simple Scuola di San Giorgio degli Schiavoni which holds some of Carpaccio’s finest painting ever commissioned. See the interior with its Gothic elements blended with the new Renaissance forms. Continue to San Giovanni del Tempio in the Grand Priory of the Knights of Malta, to see the newly restored Bellini altar in the newly re-opened church. See the Triumphal Entry Gate of the Venetian Arsenal.
Lunch at Il Covo restaurant. See the courtyard of the Palazzo Zorzi and the rooms of the recently restored Palazzo Grimani. See the state rooms of the Scuola Grande di San Marco. Walk past the exquisite hidden gem of Santa Maria dei Miracoli to see Bellini’s last altarpiece in San Giovanni Crisostomo along with the newly restored Ducal Monuments and an altar panel recently attributed to Carpaccio along with a Titian masterpiece with organ doors painted by his brother in San Salvador. Visit its adjacent cloister and see the picturesque Scala del Bovolo.
Optional evening performance at the nearby Palazzo Barbarigo Minotto, a 15th-century palace (subject to performance schedule). The opera is a travelling show and each act is set in a different hall of the palace. Please note further details of the performance will be available nearer the time.
Leave on foot to see the hidden Ridotto gaming rooms of the Venetian Republic. Take a vaporetto (public boat service) to San Giorgio Maggiore to visit the church, with its magnificent position facing St. Mark’s, and the Palladian cloister to see the Refectory and the newly installed replica of Veronese’s “Miracle at Cana” purloined by Napoleon (subject to confirmation). Continue by vaporetto to the Giudecca to see Andrea Palladio’s Chiesa del Santissimo Redentore.
Lunch at a local restaurant. Visit San Sebastiano to see the newly completed restoration of Veronese masterpieces in the church where he was buried. Continue to the 17th century San Pantaleon to see the great illusionist ceiling painting on 60 canvasses by G.A. Fumiani (1680-1704), before a visit to the Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari to see the newly restored Palo Pesaro, one of Titain’s greatest altarpieces. The artist is believed to be buried in this church. The monument to Titian and the tomb Canova designed are among the most important in the church. Private visit and drinks at a Palazzo overlooking the Grand Canal. Dinner independently.
This morning, leave the hotel on foot to visit the Gallerie dell’ Accademia to see the new arrangement of the masterpieces of the world famous Venetian School of Painting. It houses the largest collection of Venetian art in existence, and provides a complete spectrum of the Venetian School from the medieval Byzantine period right through to the Baroque and Rococo age.
Continue to see the Rialto Market before visiting the Palazzo Mocenigo at San Stae which was recently restored and rearranged by the world famous Venetian scenographer and theatre designer, Maestro Pier Luigi Pizzi. Enjoy a Prosecco reception at the Palazzo Da Silva, the home of our Guest Lecturer and his wife, Lady Rose Lauritzen.
Lunch under own arrangements. Afternoon at leisure. Private evening reception followed by dinner at the Palazzo Alvera.
Depart (with luggage) by private water taxi for the airport for a morning British Airways flight to Gatwick Airport.