Living in: Venice
The Lido, Venice’s wide beach just a short vaparetto ride across the lagoon from Piazza San Marco, attracts both tourists and locals in the summer. “The sandy beach at the Lido is very family oriented,” Hazle said. “There is tennis and other activities on the other islands in the lagoon.” The islands of Burano, known for its lace and brightly coloured houses, and Torcello, known for its Byzantine-era mosaics and medieval churches, are excellent day trips, located about 10km from Venice and reached via a 45-minute boat ride. The town of Vicenza, about 60km west of Venice, and the surrounding Veneto region are filled with Palladian houses and villas, a must for any architecture buff.
Marco Polo Airport has direct flights to many European and international cities, while Treviso Airport, where budget airlines such as Ryanair fly to, is 30km to the north. London and Paris are about a 90-minute flight away, and it is a nine-hour flight to New York. Tren Italia, the country’s primary train operator, has frequent service to the rest of Italy, and overnight trains to other European capitals and cities.
Despite tourism and the floods slowly driving out some Venetians, apartments and houses remain hard to find. In addition, the housing market in Venice has stabilised after the recession hit in 2008 and overall prices fell. “We have seen decreases of approximately 15% to 20% in prime property value since the start of the recession,” Hazle said. However, prices have increased around 5% since the beginning of 2013, with most foreign buyers being European and Russian. “We see great interest from French buyers, who normally are from Paris, and other northern Europeans, such as Belgian, Dutch and British buyers,” Hazle said. “They usually have artistic and cultural interests in Venice.”
For properties near the Grand Canal you should expect to pay 7,000 to 15,000 euros per square metre. A renovated one bedroom restored apartment around San Marco starts at around 500,000 euros, and a similar property in Giudecca starts at around 350,000 euros. The rent for an 85sqm apartment in these neighbourhoods ranges from around 1,150 to 1,500 euros a month.
Venice Daily Photo: a photo blog of city life and rhythms
Venezia Net: comprehensive guide to the city’s events, culture and restaurants
Venezia Blog: an Italian-American expat’s view on life in Venice