Our last stay in the Danieli was in 1986! I remember it as having been the most enchanting of experiences, and we must have stayed in the central palazzo because I do remember the most exquisite furnishings in the room without a frontal view.
We stayed for two nights with the amex platinum feature which allows an upgrade upon availability, late check out, breakfast and an amenity which in this case was for a high tea (which didn't fit into our schedule.)
The only rooms left when I made the reservation were the higher priced rooms, but my husband really wanted to stay at the Danieli as we had tried other hotels on recent visits (the Gritti Palace, for e.g.), and although it really irritated me I booked the horribly expensive room for two nights.
Who knows what it would have looked like if the upgrade was not available! The room was on the first floor in the adjacent building (not the main Danieli Palazzo) and had a fabulous frontal view of San Giorgio (see picture). It was not a large room, and if you like brocade, rich silk burgundy curtains, and lots of decoration (none of which would appear to have been present when the building was built) then this is your place. The furniture was notable only because it was in the Danieli Hotel where one would have expected to find gorgeous Venetian antique furnishings in the rooms; these pieces were from the same outlet that furnishes Holiday Inns everywhere, it seemed to me, although the mirrors alongside the bed were at least Venetian. I realize now that I didn't have the incentive to photograph the room and I go on memory; there was really nothing worth photographing except the view from the room, which I attach. The decor of the room was very very disappointing in it's anonymity and mass-marketish look and feel, particularly given the hotel and the price of the room, which I am embarrassed to say. Mainly faux furnishes for tippy top market rates, plus 30%. Or plus 40%. We have eyes (if not brains when we agree to pay these prices for less-than-acceptable ambiance.)
It was cold enough at night to sleep with the windows closed and in the late hours and in the morning the sounds of people partying, of boats passing could be heard, but it was not unpleasant.
The hotel provided a welcome bottle of iced prosecco which was very nice, and complimentary water was provided (two 1/2litre bottles per day, as the young man pointed out as he showed us the room.)
We arrived in early evening and decided to dine at the restaurant, first stopping for a drink in the lobby.
I ordered my favorite drink when in Venice, a spritz. It was served in a long cylindrical very scratched up glass and afterwards I remarked to my husband that it was so disappointing to be served the spritz in this type of glass. One of the features of this drink is that it is usually served in a big white wine glass and the pretty orange color and ice cubes are half the pleasure.
Dinner was inside on the terrace floor; very competent waiters and staff, nicely set tables and linens. I had the creamed fava with shrimp, my husband had the bigoli, and for secondo we had the rombo. Our primi were "alright", the secondi were overcooked and bland. It was very expensive; the rombo was €69 and when we ordered it the man said was was enough for two, but I think they must have given us double portions and charged us twice. We were starving so we ate half of it but we decided that the Danieli restaurant for dinner was a poor choice if one wishes to have something delicious.
Breakfast on the other hand is just fine. We were able to sit outside on the exceptional terrace and there is little that can rival this view and atmosphere.
I was pretty appalled to see the coffee pot brought to the table (we had asked for a refill) all stained with coffee drips! (see photo.) Someone wasn't paying attention, but we couldn't help but notice.
A last negative point which I couldn't help but notice were the truly dreadful, depressing, and fully inappropriate floral arrangements which dot the common areas. For example in the hallway/sala in front of our room there were two big tables; there is no natural light in this area. The arrangement theme throughout the hotel was orchids set in dead earth-toned branches. The orchids are gorgeous but are dwarfed by the dead branches and one's eye mainly sees what looks like my "garden" in winter before it is pruned. When we approached our room through the dim-lit area, our eyes were drawn to these dead-looking as if they should be brought back down to the basement or taken out to the dumpster arrangements, and which gave the appearance of being dust-filled. I attach some fotos of these gruesome works. The prize-winning horror adorned the fireplace in the main lobby; a wooden framed panel of grass with some orchids stuck unconvincingly in the middle. What were they thinking of? (see picture!) PS on this topic; see the picture of the "flowers" at reception; the magnolia blooms are faux!
Oh, and I was forgetting; the Danieli too uses the noisy printers in the restaurant area which of course amplifies its zingzingzing as it prints what seems like reams and reams of documented detail about each cup of coffee or tea one has consumed.
I was going to ask to see the rooms in the main palazzo but didn't; next time I think we'll try yet another hotel in Venice.
PS: There was a lot of dust in the room for e.g. around the legs of the bed (which I noticed when I was trying to find my glasses; even without my glasses I could see it!) and also in the morning on Sunday there was a rain of perhaps fresh from the night dust on the tables in the room. Not to say the room was unclean; it was clean. Cleanish. Just freshly dusty. And that harder-to-get-to under bed dust....
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Luxury, sophistication, and timeless elegance combined with contemporary comfort. This is what to expect when you choose to stay at Hotel Danieli. Evoking the opulence for which Venice is known, you'll find us right next to Piazza San Marco, placing the masterpieces of Venetian art at your doorstep. Accompanying you home long after your visit are the magnificent panoramas to be enjoyed from Restaurant Terrazza Danieli and the Danieli Wine Suite, exceptionally matched with eno-culinary journeys of indigenous ingredients. ... more less
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