Bauer Hotel (Venice)

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Bauer Hotel from the Grand Canal

The Bauer Hotel is a five-star hotel located on the Grand Canal in the San Marco sestiere of Venice, Italy, near the Piazza San Marco. It originally opened in 1880 as the Grand Hotel d'Italie Bauer-Grünwald and moved to its current location in 1902. The rooms in the modern section are marketed under the Bauer name, while those in the older section are marketed as the Bauer Palazzo.[1]

The Bauer group also owns several other hotels in Venice: the Bauer Casa Nova, adjacent to the hotel on the Campo San Moisè;[2] and the Bauer Palladio and Villa F, on the Giudecca facing San Marco across the Giudecca Canal.

History[edit]

The hotel was founded by an Italian, Mr. Bauer, a director of Venice's Hotel de la Ville, and an Austrian, Julius or Giulio Grünwald, who married Bauer's daughter.

In 1930, Grünwald's heirs sold the hotel to Arnaldo Bennati, a Ligurian shipbuilder. The hotel was closed for much of the 1940s, during which Bennati made extensive renovations and added a modern wing in the rear.[1]

In 1999, Francesca Bortolotto Possati, granddaughter of Arnaldo Bennati, became the Chairwoman and CEO of the hotel.[3]

Elliott Management and Blue Skye investments acquired the hotel through a series of debt restructuring deals between 2017 and 2019. In 2020, the Austrian real estate investment group SIGNA group bought the hotel, adding it to its portfolio which includes the Park Hyatt Vienna, The Chalet N in Lech am Arlberg, and the Villa Eden resort at Lake Garda in Italy.[4]

Services[edit]

The Bauer offers 56 suites and 135 rooms.

The hotel restaurant is De Pisis. Breakfast is served on the 7th floor terrace, the Settimo Cielo, which in the evening serves drinks and snacks. The Canal Bar is outside, at ground level, and the B Bar offers live jazz performances.

Building[edit]

Ground plan of 1902

The building, sometimes called the Palazzo Bauer, was designed by Giovanni Sardi [it] in an eclectic neo-Gothic style,[5][6] "perhaps the most significant representative of late-nineteenth century Venetian medieval mannerism".[7] Demolition of the existing buildings began in 1900 and construction was completed in 1902.[8]

On the southwest corner is the Canal Bar, a large ground-level terrace surrounded by a stone fretwork fence; at the corner there stands and a 3.6m tall statue of a woman representing Italy, a work of Carlo Lorenzetti. Before the hotel's construction, this was a public square called dei Felzi.[8]

Site of Bauer in 1828, before 1844 and 1900 demolitions

The site had previously held a 15th-century building in the "Arabo-Byzantine" style,[5] demolished in 1844.[9] Some fragments of that building were incorporated into Sardi's construction.[7]

An extra floor was added on top in 1939 by Giovanni or Giuseppe Berti.[10][7] The 7th-floor terrace "Settimo Cielo" is the highest terrace in Venice.[11]

Elaborate façade of San Moisè contrasting with the modernist façade of the Bauer
The San Moisè entrance

The rear section, facing the Campo San Moisè, was designed by Marino Meo in 1945 and completed in 1949.[12][13][14] The façade of the church San Moisè has been called "the busiest façade in town" and contrasts with the travertine cladding and light-colored marble columns of the Bauer,[12] "brutally modernist in its plainness";[15] Joseph Brodsky described the juxtaposition as "Albert Speer having a pizza capricciosa".[13]

The hotel underwent a major remodelling in 1999, under Bortolotto Possati.

Location[edit]

The hotel fronts on the Grand Canal on the south. To its left, across the Rio San Moisè, is the Palazzo Treves-Barozzi, and to its right, separated by the Calle Tredici Martiri, is the Ca' Giustinian. The hotel's main entrance is on the north, on the Campo San Moisè. On its west runs the Rio San Moisè, on which it has a boat landing. It faces the Dogana and the Salute across the Grand Canal.

Marketing[edit]

The hotel is a member of Leading Hotels of the World.

In literature[edit]

The Bauer-Grünwald is one of the settings of Chekhov's novella An Anonymous Story (1893).[citation needed]

External links[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b "1880: Bauer Il Palazzo", Historic Hotels of the World
  2. ^ Bauer Casa Nova
  3. ^ Nancy Chuda, "The Woman Who Keeps Venice Italy Alive and Afloat: Francesca Bortolotto Possati's Mission for Life", Huffpost, June 11, 2015
  4. ^ "SIGNA Acquire the Bauer Hotel in Venice". The Hotel Property Team. 2020-06-06. Retrieved 2020-12-07.
  5. ^ a b Giulio Lorenzetti, John Guthrie, translator, Venice and Its Lagoon, Trieste:1975, p. 627
  6. ^ John Freely, Strolling Through Venice, 1994, ISBN 0140146512, p. 57
  7. ^ a b c "Hotel Bauer Gruenwald", Condotte nei Restauri, 1992, ISBN 8870627799, p. 89ff
  8. ^ a b "Il nuovo palazzo dell'albergo 'Italia'", L'Edilizia Moderna, 1902, p. 23f
  9. ^ Hugh A. Douglas, Venice on Foot, 1907, p. 52
  10. ^ Tudy Sammartini, John Julius Norwich, Giles Watson, Julian Honer, Decorative Floors of Venice, 2000, ISBN 1858941083, p. 197
  11. ^ "Settimo Cielo Venice Rooftop Bar", Bauer official web site
  12. ^ a b Touring Club Italiano, Venezia, Guida d'Italia del Touring Club Italiano (Guide Rosse), 3rd edition, 1985, ISBN 8836500064, p. 310
  13. ^ a b Giulia Foscari, Elements of Venice, 2014, ISBN 9783037784297, p. 150
  14. ^ Egle Trincanato, Umberto Franzoi, Venise au fil du temps, Éditions Cuénot:1971, index
  15. ^ Margaret Plant, Venice: Fragile City, 1797-1997, 2002, ISBN 0300083866, p. 353