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Luna Hotel Baglioni

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ABOVE: The 18th Century breakfast room of the Luna Hotel Baglioni in Venice, Italy.

Restaurants

Breakfast is served in a room that wouldn't look out of place at Versailles or Schönbrunn. (See photo above.) A generous buffet of breads, pastries, cold cuts, smoked salmon, cereals, eggs, fresh fruit, and a table of "bio" health-food items is included in the Luna's rates, or you can have breakfast served in your room for an additional charge.

  • Comment: You won't find a friendlier or more competent serving staff than the women in the Luna's breakfast room. The Italian server who greeted us in English each morning slipped effortlessly into Deutsch when a German couple arrived.

The Canova Restaurant offers Venetian and international dishes in two attractively furnished dining rooms just inside the hotel entrance. I had a very pleasant dinner of pasta e fagioli (traditional pasta and bean soup), sliced Angus beef filet with parmesan cheese and rosemary, and "Three Chocolates Delight" with pistachio sauce.

A risotto of radicchio from Treviso, sea bass with artichokes and chives, mallard breast, Venetian-style liver and onions, and Amaretto zagablione with "a drop of Grand Marnier" were some of the other items on the menu during our visit.

Service was impeccable without being stuffy, and the dress code was relaxed enough to allow open-necked shirts and sweaters. Our fellow guests were an eclectic bunch that included British diners, an Italian mother with her adolescent daughter, and a young couple with a small baby.

Bar

The Luna Hotel Baglioni's elegant bar is across the lobby from the restaurant. It offers all the usual drinks, including Prosecco (Venice's answer to Champagne), spremuta or freshly-squeezed fruit juice, and--in season--Bellini cocktails, which combine Prosecco with the juice of white peaches.

  • Tip: In the lounge next to the bar, you'll pass an archway that leads to a boardroom. An Internet terminal is tucked into a niche, and you can use it to check your e-mail or browse the Web free of charge.

Special events

Stefano Bàccara, the Luna's general manager, told us about special parties that take place at the hotel:

  • When Carnival arrives in February, the chef prepares a heavy, almost dessert-like hot chocolate that is served with traditional frittelli or fritters at a daily "chocolate party" at 5 p.m. in the 18th Century breakfast room. Costumed members of Venice's Amici del Carnevale dance as a trio plays Vivaldi for the crowd of Venetians and hotel guests.

  • During the Redentore festival on the third Saturday in July, the hotel serves a dinner for 50 to 60 guests on one of the suite terraces. Guests can then watch fireworks along with the thousands of Venetians who gather in boats in St. Mark's Basin.

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Also see:
Where to Sleep in Venice

Photo: Baglioni Hotels.

 

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