11 - Hotel NH Collection Venezia Palazzo Barocci


Teatro Sant'Angelo, where Casanova worked

Whilst, we're in the area, we should visit a location from Casanova's later life. To get there, come back out of the Calle Traghetto Vecchio and take a sharp left, around the corner over the metal bridge. Once across it, go under the covered walkway, the Sotoportego Narisi, and follow the canal path to the end and around the corner to the Corte De L'Albero. Take a left and you will be faced with an impressive large building. It's actually the pink building next to this, with its walled garden, that we are interested in. Now the Hotel NH Collection Venezia Palazzo Barocci, which you can access by heading down towards the Sant Angelo vaparetto stop on the Grand Canal and taking a left on the Fondamenta Del Teatro.

Since 2009, the building has been a 4 star hotel, however between 1677 and 1803, it operated as the Teatro Sant'Angelo, a popular venue for the operas of Antonio Vivaldi and Baldassare Galuppi and the plays of Carlo Goldoni, three of the Venetian Republic's other favourite sons.

Casanova, aged 55, became the theatre manager here in 1780, during his return to Venice, booking cheap French actors to support a main star. Whilst he may have been ahead of his time by introducing double bills and advance promotion of performances, it was a short-lived role that didn't pay him handsomely.

The theatre closed in 1803 and served as a warehouse until being rebuilt in 1890 as the Barocci family palace. 

Whilst sat outside the hotel, overlooking the Grand Canal, you can imagine a 20 year old Casanova misbehaving here with his seven drunken musician friends. 

We often spent our nights roaming through different quarters of the city, thinking up the most scandalous practical jokes and putting them into execution. We amused ourselves by untying the gondolas, moored to private houses, which then drifted with the current to one side of the Grand Canal or the other, and making merry over the curses the gondoliers would call down on us the next morning when they did not find their gondolas where they moored them.
— Casanova - The Story Of My Life (Volume II)