Venice’s best seat on the Grand Canal is at Gritti Palace
Before I headed to Venice for the Venice Biennale, I heard the news that the Gritti Palace was opening a new canal side lounge bar Riva Lounge designed by Riva Yacht. Yep, that Riva, the gorgeous and century-old boat-making company of luxury flotilla (runabouts, row boats, yachts, motoscafi and all) that has the remarkable ability to make my heart beat just a little faster and my mind conjure up overly styled images of me arriving in my best cruise wear just upon hearing the those beautiful syllables: riva.
Did I mention that Riva Lounge is canal-side? Yep, the best seat on the Grand Canal because it is front row to the Salute. Riva Lounge is on my shortlist for best cocktail spots during the Biennale and anytime in Venice. And its location, a 4 minute walk to Piazza San Marco, is worth the Bellini alone.
Ship Shape Details
Long known for its unforgettable style both large and small- wooden hulls through the 1960s and sublime sexy fiberglass from the 1970s forward, hand-stitched upholstery, gorgeous chrome ornaments, and color, precisely picked color, Riva Yacht has given the exact same attention to its land-locked vessel.
The classic design is subtle at times, and best shown off in its aerodynamic, Acquarama-inspired chairs of nautical Navy blue back casing, white upholstering, and chrome. I had my eye on a table- the gorgeous round tops made of inlaid wood and chrome with that inimitable Riva script. My only suggestion to Gritti is please do not cover the table with linen cloths. Riva lovers, like myself, want to obsess over the chrome inlay while enjoying the bacalà tris and a Riva cockail.
If design and material is so very Riva, so is color. Riva’s Robin’s egg blue is just the menu, but also the signature Riva Cocktail (orgeat syrup, white rum, orange bitters, grapefruit juice). The menu itself is a very lovely selection of light Venetian dishes, including the Bacalà tris. But next time you find me there, I’ll be the woman testing out the cocktails and cicchetti.