ca’ amadi : venice : italy

One of the joys of staying in Venice, is trawling the internet beforehand, to find where you are going to stay. We’ve stayed in apartments and hotels, and thankfully have never had a bad experience. I do spend a lot of time reading reviews, scrutinising websites, looking a photographs, identifying the location and what’s in the vicinity. I think a bit of homework always pays off, as I’ve seen places we’ve rejected online, in reality, and for a variety of reasons, our research has always paid off.

Ca’ Amadi is a hotel we’ve stayed in twice, and on both occasions, have loved it. It’s initially quite tricky to find, because it’s in a courtyard, off an alley, off a road, but perseverance pays off. Google Maps, in the centre of Venice is a bit hit and miss, but it’s not too far from the Rialto Bridge and so if you keep this as your main bearing point, you’ll eventually find Ca’ Amadi, On our first visit, it was clearly in the early stages of a renovation, as scaffolding was up outside and on the second visit, interior work was happening. From checking out the website recently, it’s clear the renovations have been completed because it’s now even more beautiful than when we stayed. It’s a very authentic Venetian residence, once home to the family of Marco Polo, no less. As stated on the website…

This small boutique hotel is housed in the noble floor of a palace dated 13th century and still preserves many traces of its long history. Entering the hotel, you’ll be welcomed in a large salon with ancient wooden ceilings, facing on one side a picturesque canal and a typical Venetian court on the other. In this place, full of memories and emotions, you’ll be able to relive the splendour of the Republic of Venice and, at the same time, enjoy the most modern comforts. History, culture or just a break in the frenetic daily life: at Ca’ Amadi every traveller can find what he’s looking for.

And, if you are ever in this area of Venice, forget eating out anywhere near the Rialto Bridge – and take our advice and visit Il Milion, reputedly the oldest osteria still opertaing in Venice. With a tradition extending back more than 300 years and a location near the rear of San Giovanni Crisostomo, this restaurant is named after the book written by Marco Polo, Il Milion, describing his travels. In fact, it occupies a town house once owned by members of the explorer’s family, just like Ca’ Amadi, which is literally about thirty metres away.

At Osteria Il Milion, a simple, nine-table restaurant set in a tiny courtyard across from the home of Marco Polo near the Rialto Bridge, you will find some of the finest local seafood. One of the city’s oldest dining establishments, its name is derived from a story about Marco Polo, who was said to exaggerate the millions of things he had seen and the millions of miles he traveled, earning the ironic nickname, “Il Milion.” The food here, most notably the tagliolini with spider crab, risotto with scampi and zucchini, and John Dory and grilled polenta, has clean flavors that are not masked by sauces, butter, or cream. The ingredients are so fresh and intense that there is no reason to hide them. “I eat here every day,” says owner Roberto Bocus, “so it has to be good.”

And, if you take our advice and eat there, do make sure that you order the Spaghetti con le Cipolle – I promise you will never have tasted onions as sweet. We’ve eaten there a few times, and again every meal has been memorable – perhaps none more so than the Aqua Alta of 2018…

Published on 7th November 2021