Hotel Ariel Silva

A room at the Hotel Ariel Silva, Venice
A room at the Hotel Ariel Silva in Venice.

The hidden and wonderfully homey Hotel Ariel Silva in Venice, Italy

When I first walked into this little hotel, I thought I'd wandered into someone's house by accident.

Seriously. If it weren't for the long table that looked like a reception desk and a shelf with dog-eared guidebooks and trashy novels in three languages, I would have quietly snuck out, embarrassed.

It didn't help that the address—ten minutes from the train station and just two blocks from the historic Jewish Ghetto—was well hidden (the street's called Calle della Masena, but the narrow, alley-like entrance is marked only with a sign identifying its parish, "Parrocchia S. Marcuola").

Then again, in over-crowded Venice, being so firmly off the beaten path can be a distinct blessing.

The rooms are teensy, but manage to achieve the effect of "cozy" rather than "cramped," and though the overall look is...let's call it "Venice, circa 1986"—plush velvet headboards, modular furnishings and baths—the homey feel, frosted glass walls in some (great light!), and marble tables on the flower-filled breakfast terrace more than make up for lackluster décor.

Well, that and the wonderfully low prices.

They also rent several apartments in the neighborhood from €239 for a two-bedroom sleeping four or five, and from €319 for one that sleeps eight.

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Details, tips, & links

Details

Hotel Ariel Silva
Cannaregio 1391a -On Calle della Masena—a.k.a. "Parrocchia S. Marcuola"—off Rio Terrà S. Leonardo
Vaporetto: S. Marcuola Casinó or Guglie
tel. +39-041-714-773
www.arielsilva.it
€€
» book

Nearby sights, dining, hotels

Sights nearby
Jewish Ghetto [neighborhood]
★★ Ca d'Oro [palace/museum]
Ca' Pesaro [palace/museum]ª
ª Just across the Grand Canal

Where to eat nearby
Brek [light meal]
Trattoria Cea [meal]

Hotels nearby
RR Hotel Bernardi-Semenzato [super-cheap/cheap]

» More hotels in Cannaregio from Venere.com
» More hotels in Cannaregio from Booking.com

Lodging links
Lodging tips
  • If you're looking for a hotel near a particular sight, just go to that sight's page and, in the sidebar on the right, you'll see a list of all the nearby hotels (with "Reid Recommends" choices preceded by a little RR icon: Reid Recommends).
  • The Venice hotel tax: As of 2011, Venice began charging a Visitor Tax. This is the city's doing, and it is not a scam (just annoying). All charges are per person, per night, for all guests over the age of 10, and the tax is charged for stays of up to 10 days. (There are discounts: Dec-Jan, 30%; Kids aged 10-16, 50%; Stays on the Lido or other outer islands, 20%; Stays in Mestre or elsewhere on the mainland, 20%.)

    The cost breakdown is insanely complicated (varies with official clasification and rating cateogry), but general as of 2014:

    • Hotels: €1 pppn (per person per night) per star rating. (So a couple [2 people] staying three nights [2 x 3 = 6] in a four-star hotel [6 x €4 = €24] would pay an extra €24.
    • B&Bs: €3 pppn flat
    • Apartments, residences, rental rooms: €1.50–€2.50 pppn
    • Hostels/religious housing and agriturismi: €2 pppn
    • Camping: €0.10–€0.40 pppn

    Some hotels have folded the fee into their quoted rates; most properties tack it on as an extra when you check out. Just be prepared.

  • Book ahead in summer and during Carnevale: Venice is way more popular than the number of beds it has, so while in the dead of winter you can often show up and find a good place to crash easily, the best rooms (and the best-value hotels) are booked well in advance for the summer months and the two weeks prior to Ash Wednesday (when Venice breaks out the fancy dress and masks for its famed Carnevale celebrations).

    Same goes (though less so, and more at the chic and high end hotels) during the Venice Biennale art festival and the Venice Film Festival.
  • Pay extra for A/C in summer: No matter what kind of lodging you pick, if it's summer (a) try to get a room with air-conditioning and (b) even if you can't (or you can but have a hankering for some fresh air) resist the urge to open the windows to your room.

    Venice is, I believe, the primary breeding ground for the mosquito population of Southern Europe, and precious few Italian hoteliers have discovered that newfangled invention called window screens. Keep the windows shut, or prepare to be bitten.

    (Also, carry some bug spray for those romantic canalside dinners outside. Trust me.)
  • Avoid Mestre: Any hotels with an address in "Venezia-Mestre" is actually in the dull, modern, industrial suburb at the mainland end of the bridge over to the real, ancient Venice you came all this way to see. Do not stay in Mestre! You'll spend more time and money commuting each day in an out of Venice proper than you will save.
Other Venice links & resources

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Details
Hotel Ariel Silva
Cannaregio 1391a -On Calle della Masena—a.k.a. "Parrocchia S. Marcuola"—off Rio Terrà S. Leonardo
Vaporetto: S. Marcuola Casinó or Guglie
tel. +39-041-714-773
www.arielsilva.it
€€
» book
Nearby
Sights nearby
Jewish Ghetto [neighborhood]
★★ Ca d'Oro [palace/museum]
Ca' Pesaro [palace/museum]ª
ª Just across the Grand Canal

Where to eat nearby
Brek [light meal]
Trattoria Cea [meal]

Hotels nearby
RR Hotel Bernardi-Semenzato [super-cheap/cheap]

» More hotels in Cannaregio from Venere.com
» More hotels in Cannaregio from Booking.com


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