Orient Express, a member of the Accor hospitality juggernaut, has confirmed a partnership agreement with Italian hospitality group Arsenale S.p.A to open the second Orient Express hotel in Italy at the spectacular Palazzo Donà Giovannelli in Venice.
Venice, once the gateway to Constantinople and a mythical stop on the legendary Orient Express train – that opened its doors in 1919 with the completion of the Simplon tunnel linking Switzerland to Italy – will be the home of the second Orient Express hotel, set to open in early 2024.
Located 10 minutes from Venice’s Santa Lucia train station, next to the Cannaregio shopping district, and rooted in the origins of the City of the Doges, the Palazzo Donà Giovannelli is a treasured palace built in 1400 by architect Filippo Calendario, known for Venice’s famed Doge’s Palace.
Former home of the Duke of Urbino, a patron of the arts, it has been renovated twice, notably in 1800 by architect Gian Battista Meduna.
An ode to the heritage of Venice, inspired by all of the cultures and eras that are forever a part of its history, the Orient Express Venice Hotel will be home to 45 rooms and suites, all overlooking the gardens and canals of Venice. The hotel bar will be located in the former piano nobile ballroom on the main floor of the building. A world-class restaurant will introduce guests to the flavours of Italian gastronomy. Select terraces hidden on the hotel’s rooftops will offer the most beautiful views of the wonders of the Serenissima.
Once opened, passengers on the Orient Express La Dolce Vita train will be able to disembark directly at the Venice Santa Lucia Station and reach the Orient Express Venice Hotel by foot or by boat.
Stephen Alden, CEO Raffles and Orient Express, Accor commented: “The arrival of Orient Express in Venice resonates naturally with the brand’s history. It marks a return to the roots of a legend that finds its ultimate expression in the Palazzo Donà Giovannelli.
Paolo Barletta, CEO of Arsenale S.p.A added: “The strategic union between Venice and the new Orient Express Hotel represents another significant step in the objective that Arsenale is pursuing thanks to the partnership with Orient Express, namely the relaunch of luxury tourism that highlights the unprecedented artistic and cultural heritage of our Italian peninsula.
“Palazzo Donà Giovannelli will become a unique landmark in Venice with its exceptional design, history and heritage,” Barletta added.