Venice’s iconic Lido hotel to close

Boo. One of my favourite places in the whole world is the Lido in
Venice – basically a strip of an island that is about a mile by boat
from the rest of the city. You get a quiet island, a lovely beach and
a brilliant boat trip each time you pop off to Vencie proper. I stayed
here on my honeymoon and had four glorious days spoilt only by the
site of Alan Yentob in his budgie smugglers (he gets to stay in all
the cool places!). We stayed in the Hotel Des Bains, a stunning turn
of the century hotel immortalised by the Dirk Bogarde film Death in
Venice. And I absolutely fell in love with the place.

Anyway according to The Guardian, Des Bains is closing its doors and
becoming luxury apartments. Here’s what they say…

‘The news will upset cinephiles and art lovers the world over, and for
ever change the face of the Venice film festival, which is held
nearby.

Andrea Martini, film critic and professor of cinema theory at Siena
University, who stayed at the hotel for 22 years in a row while
covering the festival, is devastated by the news. “I always got room
422, one of the old rooms, still with parquet and art nouveau
furniture, with a little terrace overlooking the sea. The bedsheets
were in white linen; it was so worn out, you could see through it.”

He is angry at the city for not doing more to preserve it. “I’m in
mourning,” he said. “It may look frivolous at first, but it is
actually a very serious matter. Somebody at the Venice town hall is at
fault for not preserving what is an international and historical
treasure.”

Always wanted to go back there… Very sad.

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