In an atmosphere of ancient times, at our center you can find location for meetings concerning culture and hospitality inside an old monastery, restored and equipped with the latest technology. The Centre accommodates groups, individuals and families, and offers the opportunity to stay in a private and quiet place in the city centre of Venice, behind Gallerie dell’Accademia with direct overview on the Zattere quayside and on Giudecca Canal.
The entire building develops around three cloisters of 18th century and one cloister of 15th century near our Church of Santa Maria della Visitazione. Thanks to its vastness, its architecture, its gardens, its silence, our Center is an oasis inside the town: here even the rooms tell and create an atmosphere, by raising emotions.
Will let you discover all the magic atmospheres,
the incredible artistic heritage
of the Cultural Center Don Orione Artigianelli
and the magic in Venice.
What’s on in Venice
A Greek community has long existed in Venice, but after the fall of Constantinople, in 1453, the Greeks grew considerably and by the end of the XV century they were about four thousand, and constituted the most important foreign component in the Serenissima. With the permission of the Venetian authorities, the Greeks gathered in a secular brotherhood: it was the 28th November 1498 when the Consiglio dei Dieci authorized them to establish the Confraternity of the Greek Orthodox or Scuola Greca, whose purpose consisted in charity and mutual assistance. This year the confraternity celebrates 521 years from its foundation.
Between 1539 and 1573 the Scuola Greca built the splendid Church of Saint George (San Giorgio dei Greci), the oldest and most important church of the Orthodox Diaspora. The church now hosts the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Italy and Malta. Gradually a whole Greek neighborhood took shape around the Church, within the Castello district. From the Riva degli Schiavoni, the Church of San Giorgio dei Greci can be easily recognized for its leaning bell tower. As in other Eastern Christian churches of Byzantine tradition, the interior space is divided by the iconostasis, a solid screen of stone, wood, or metal, separating the sanctuary from the nave. That of the Church of San Giorgio dei Greci, in marble, is covered with icons of the post-Byzantine Cretan painter Michael Damaskinos. The most important work in the Cathedral is the inspiring icon of Christ Pantokrator (brought to Venice from Constantinople just before the Turkish conquest), considered one of the most beautiful Byzantine works ever, according to the French writer André Malraux.
In 1949, the immense patrimony of the Scuola Greca was entirely donated to the Greek State, founding the Hellenic Institute of Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Studies in Venice, the only Greek centre abroad dedicated to research and studies. It is located in the monumental complex of the Campo dei Greci, and has a rich library, with about two thousand ancient volumes printed by the Greek publishers in Venice from the 16th to the 18th century, a precious archive and a museum of Byzantine and post-Byzantine icons. Housed on the first floor of the Scoletta of San Nicolò dei Greci, erected by Baldassarre Longhena in 1678, this museum - unique in Europe - contains one of the most important collections of Byzantine and post-Byzantine icons, 80 works of art, ranging from the 14th to the 18th century.
In Venice there were many scuole, confraternities, or lay brotherhoods, founded as devotional institutions, that were set up with the purpose of providing mutual assistance. The scuole also depended on the state, which exercised a protective and supervisory role. Each scuola had its own meeting house where the members gathered: these buildings still today preserve an extraordinary historical and artistic heritage.
By the sixteenth century, there were over two hundred scuole in Venice, among which there were six Scuole grandi, devotional scuole with their specific religious connotations. Today there are four Scuole grandi still active in Venice: Carmini, San Giovanni Evangelista, San Rocco, San Teodoro.
There were also other types of scuola in Venice, the Scuole minori, such as the scuole of the arts and crafts, which protected the interests of different categories of workers and regulated their activity. All the trades were represented: the "Botteri", those who made barrels; "Curameri", those who worked leather; "Forneri", who made bread; "Frutaroli"; "Pistori" and many others.
Then, there were the national Scuole which grouped the members of each foreign community in the town. For example, the Scuole of the Milanese, Lucchesi, Albanians, Germans, Florentines. Also the synagogues in the Jewish Ghetto were called Scuole, because of their role both social and religious.
The Scuola Dalmata di San Giorgio e Trifone, also known as San Giorgio degli Schiavoni, is one of these national scuole, founded with the intention of bringing together residents in Venice from the Dalmatia region (now part of Croatia). The Scuola Dalmata was recognized in 1451 - following the conquest of Dalmatia by the Venetians - as a confraternity of sailors, soldiers and emigrants belonging to the Dalmatian community in Venice. Schiavoni is the term with which the inhabitants of the Dalmatian islands were called at the time.
The ground floor of the Scuola Dalmata houses one of the most extraordinary painting cycles of the early Venetian Renaissance, executed by Vittore Carpaccio in the early sixteenth century. This cycle of paintings narrates the stories of the confraternity’s patron saints George,Tryphon and Jerome. The masterpiece in the series is certainly the Vision of St Augustine. The Saint is caught in the instant in which the voice of St Jerome distracts his attention from a letter he was writing to him, to advise him of his imminent death and ascent to heaven.
The building of the Scuola Dalmata was renovated in 1551, when the façade was covered with white Istrian stone and the bas-relief with Saint George was made for the portal. Just above the high altar is a precious relic of Saint George. The Scuola Dalmata was one of the rarest religious institutions which managed to keep its artistic heritage intact and in the same premises, notwithstanding the decree of Napoleonic suppressions.
The so-called Snail Staircase must rank as one of the best hidden sights to track down in Venice, lost in a maze of narrow streets not far from the Rialto bridge. In a hidden courtyard, a stone's throw from Campo Manin, in the San Marco district, the Contarini del Bovolo staircase emerges in all its extraordinary beauty. This is the most imposing spiral staircase in Venice, 28 meters high, from whose belvedere you can admire the domes of the Basilica di San Marco and of the Basilica della Salute, and a breathtaking view of the roofs and bell towers of the entire city.
This architectural jewel is part of the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo, a late-Gothic palace built between the 14th and 15th centuries as the residence of the Contarini family. At the end of the 15th century the Contarinis decided to embellish their palazzo with an external spiral staircase, a project by a local architect, Giovanni Candi. The Snail Staircase acquired so much popularity that eventually the word "bovolo" - which means "snail" in Venetian - became part of the last name of the family, which in the end would be known as Contarini dal Bovolo (the Contarinis of the Snail). In the courtyard, there is a small garden with arks and wells from the church of San Paternian (demolished in the nineteenth century when the campo where it stood was transformed and named after the patriot Daniele Manin), including a beautiful Venetian-Byzantine well from the 11th century.
The loggia on the second floor of the Scala del Bovolo leads to the Sala del Tintoretto, a prestigious room in Palazzo Contarini where you can admire the collection of Venetian art from the 16th to the 18th century belonging to the IRE public institution, current owner of the building and administrator of all the shelter institutions spread throughout the city.From "DeTourism"
The Lido, an island much loved by poets and writers, with its elegant Liberty villas, the historic village of Malamocco, the 18th century Murazzi and the golden sand beaches, is one of those places where one can still breathe an atmosphere of peace and tranquility. Equally picturesque, the nearby island of Pellestrina is a hidden corner of the lagoon, as fascinating as fragile, which requires that all those who land there opt for a slow, careful and non-invasive experience.
Beaches and natural areas
The beaches of Lido island, this year awarded with the Blue Flag, are appreciated both by Venetians and foreigners. The gentle slope of the seabed permits younger children to bathe in peace; in addition thanks to the total removal of architectural barriers everyone can enjoy the beach. For lovers of natural and wilder settings, there is the Alberoni Sand Dune Oasis, a unique environment used as stopover and winter habitat for numerous birds, such the Fratino and the Fraticello. At the North end of the island, another treasure of biodiversity is the Nature Reserve of San Nicolò area.
The island of Pellestrina boasts forty hectares of protected natural reserve. Ca' Roman nature reserve, located at the south, is connected to Pellestrina by the artificial Murazzi dam: this reserve still preserves one of the most unspoilt habitat in the whole upper Adriatic area.
The Cycle Route of the islands
The best way to discover these two islands is with an easy and pleasant ride along the Ciclovia delle isole E5. Starting from the Lido you cross the island arriving to Malamocco (on crowded days the internal road route is preferable). Once at Alberoni, take ferry line 11 towards Santa Maria del Mare, at the eastern end of the North of Pellestrina. From here, continuing further south, you cross the villages of San Pietro in Volta and Portosecco.
To protect its extraordinary habitat, the Ca' Roman reserve is not suitable for cycling. Before arriving at Caroman (Pellestrina Cimitero stop), you can take the vaporetto line 11 towards Chioggia (around 30 minutes). The number of bicycles allowed on board is at the discretion of the captain, for reasons of passenger safety. On Saturdays and holidays, until October 27th 2019, the line 11 service on the Chioggia - Pellestrina section is reinforced with dedicated rides for cyclists. Please note that only passengers and not cycles and motorcycles can be landed or loaded on Ca' Roman.
To rent a bike, there are several shops on the Lido island that offer daily rates; moreover the public bike sharing service, VeNice in Bike, is available.
July is a very special month for Venetians and the reason is quickly revealed: the Festa del Redentore (Feast of the Redeemer) – the most heartfelt of traditional festivals, celebrated on the third Sunday of July on Giudecca island – is coming. This tradition, combining religion with entertainment in a mix of sacred and profane, has existed for almost five centuries and is lived with great participation by Venetians, who await the eve of the party – the notte famosissima – to decorate the boats with lights and colorful festoons and reach St. Mark’s basin, where they have dinner together and watch the firework show until midnight. On Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st July, the festival will celebrate the liberation of Venice from the great plague of 1575-1577 with the setting up of the spectacular votive bridge that connects Fondamenta delle Zattere to the Church of the Redentore on the Giudecca island. The party continues on Sunday with the Redentore's Regattas – fierce rowing competitions on traditional boats along the Giudecca Canal – and the Votive Mass at the Church of the Redentore.
The whole Venetian summer is full of events, as every island in the lagoon revives its local traditions. The appearance of the Virgin Mary - who saved Venice from the Turks - on the island of Pellestrina in 1716, is still celebrated today from 28th July to 4th August with the pilgrimage to the sanctuary and with rowing regattas, concerts, dancing and fireworks, as well as with open air tables where typical dishes such as pasta with peòci (mussels) and other fish specialties are served. Another popular summer festival is the Sagra di Santo Stefano in Portosecco, which takes place in a small village on the island of Pellestrina from 10th to 18th August and is a good occasion to discover unusual places in the lagoon, both for Venetians and visitors. During the festival, also the islanders take part to the religious procession accompanied by the musical band, and then enjoy regattas, live music and local food, including the renowned spaghetti with peòci, the peòci saltai, the sardines in saòr, and the fried seafood.
IN THE ART OF VENICE