The legendary Italian city of Venice awash with sweet, enchanting stories from the past. Its present image is anchored on its historical background that dates as far back as time can tell. One of such stories is that of Danieli Hotel, which exemplifies the ancient culture and architecture of ancient Venice. Let’s travel back in time and trace the roots and journey of this five star hotel.
Historical Background The remarkable history of Danieli Hotel Venice can be traced back to the fourteenth century when the Dandolo family commissioned the Palazzo Dandolo, the main building that houses the hotel. Enrico, the most famous of the four Dandolos who once served in the capacity of the Doge of Venice, concurred and plundered Constantinople in 1204. He returned back to Venice with a huge bounty of marble, gold and byzantine artworks. Some of the bounty, especially the artworks, was used to adorn the interior of the Palazzo Dandolo.
Three Palaces Danieli hotel Venice comprises of three palaces: The Palazzo Dandolo, the Palazzo Casa Nuova and the Palazzo Danieli Excelsior. The Palazzo Dandolo, synonymous with the Gothic style of Venice, and which dates back to the fourteenth century, initially housed the noble Venetian Dandolo family, while Palazzo Casa Nuova, which can be traced back to the nineteenth century, previously served as the city’s treasury. The redesigned Palazzo Danieli Excelsior, which dates back to the twentieth century, features guestrooms on its upper floors, with the lagoon visible from the balconies. The hotel’s three intricately interlaced palaces are home to a rich and wide collection of antiques and precious art that loudly tell of the city’s history. Everything is very well blended with contemporary comforts to ensure that the sophisticated, cultured global traveller’s expectations and needs are met. Dan Niel’s Takeover The name “Dànieli” can be traced back to 1822 when Giuseppe Dan Niel rented a section of it and converted it to a hotel, which he called “Danieli” after his nickname. He eventually purchased the entire property to himself. The infamous love-gone-sour story involving Alfred de Musset and George Sand exploded here in the winter of 1833. In 1895, the hotel changed hands again. This time round, it fell in the hands of two partners: Camping Bozzi and Co. and Mr Genovesi. They invested heavily in its modernization, introducing electricity, elevators and radiators. This enhanced the hotel’s reputation of modernity and luxury. By this time,a bridge had been built to connect it with the Casa Nuova Palace. Since then, it underwent many radical changes and reconstructions to bring it to its current status. Its latest redesign in 2008 by renowned architect, Jacques Garcia, gave it the most modern touch that puts it par with the most luxurious hotel’s in the world. Prominent Guests From as early as 1498, when the Prince of Salerno and his guests put up here, Danieli Hotel has
hosted some of history’s greatest personalities, the Prince of Salerno’s visit preeminently made it the place to stay for prominent visitors. Records have it that in 1525, an audience of prominent personalities, including the King of England’s cousin and the ambassador of Mantua, was entertained here with a classic comedy of the time. That was when it was given the title, “Venice’ most noble palace”. In its long history, it has hosted writers musicians, scientists, politicians and royals. These include Charles Dickens, Goethe, Peggy Guggenheim, Benjamin Britten, George Sand, John Ruskin, Leonard Bernstein, Harrison Ford, Byron, Wagner, and Steven Spielberg, among others.