When AMAN Resorts approached Denniston to be a part of the refurbishment of Palazzo Papadopoli, a Listed Heritage Venetian Building on the Grand Canal part of the UNESCO Heritage City, Being the last Palazzo in Venice permitted to be converted into a hotel, it was a great challenge.
While there was a need to update the 16th century Palazzo with modern conveniences, we wanted to ensure that we retained as much of the building’s charm, history and the Palazzo’s rich architecture.
Historically, Palazzos were homes of prosperous merchants who constantly entertained and their homes would lively but yet private when the need arose. With that in mind, we aimed to recreate a home where guests would feel the coziness and familiarity similar to, when they would visit family and friends as opposed to the “coldness” of a regular hotel. To cite an example, guests are greeted with an opulent lobby lounge the moment they step into the AMAN Resort World; the usual classic formal reception desk which many are familiar with was definitely banned.
Denniston’s design vision was to avoid competing with the period Architecture, hence the decision to go with the contemporary style was the only relevant choice in the direction of success. We treated the interiors in the lightest and most delicate manner to bring some freshness in this historically heavy environment. Using pure lines combined with few color tones in addition to working with only the finest materials and finishes, was intentional. This created a dichotomy between the period and contemporary styles but always keeping in line with the lounge and cozy atmosphere that has made Denniston worldwide famous.
Bathrooms have been the areas where we have been able to combine the best of the contemporary style and styles of the 16th and 18th centuries. Thanks are due as well to the best Italian craftsmanships and suppliers, who enabled us to achieve our amazing design detailing.
Yes we have been very lucky to work with the best Italian craftsmen out of which some where specialized in Venetian Palazzo. Some of these family artisans were already in activity and were part of the construction when the Palazzo was being built on the 1600’s.
All the period decoration and plaster ceiling frescos have been refreshed by artisans followed by an in house historian.
The ground floor public area and staircase’s Venetian plaster (faux marble) were repaired as per original.
All the original paneled wall fabrics and curtains have been re-created by the 2 best Italian fabric artisans (Luigi-Bevilacqua Bevillaqua & Rubelli)
For the Guestroom Rubelli has been a precious adviser of how traditional Venetian curtain were designed, allowing us to design a modern pure white and clean line interpretation of Venetian curtain matching the room design.
The Original parquet floors and windows have all been removed, refurbished and treated in an artisan’s workshop and re-install as they were.
The heavily decorated terrazzo ‘alla Veneziana” floors were repaired or replaced respecting the Venetian rational workmanship.
Every single Old Kristal chandeliers were un-hang and sent to Murano Island Kristal factory to be refurbished to day standard before being re-installed.
Where old chandeliers where missing we had chance to replace them by brand new modern design Baroviere & Toso Kristal chandelier. One of the last still family owned Kristal chandelier factory on Murano Island. Baroviere & Toso custom designed some specific pieces for the Palazzo.
The Aman Venice’s boat is an accurate replica of an twelve meters long 1930’s royal boat: the longest boat in the all Venice. It has been handmade by a local artisan boat maker with the modern equipment to keep up with 2014 norms and laws of navigation.
One of Denniston’s challenges was to incorporate the “mechanicals and electricals” in the most efficient and discrete way possible. As the existing architecture is un-touchable, for patrimony protection reasons, we worked very closely with engineers to intelligently integrate air-conditioning systems and lighting directly into custom made furniture. This approach was to ensure a visually neat design outcome.
The Gardens of the Palazzo is the jewel in the crown. Denniston designed the front canal garden to stand proud like a trophy. A haven for lunch and dinner or just to socialize across classic Venetian garden mirrors under the vine pergola. The back garden was design to remain discrete and to exude a sense of calm and romanticism in the shade of century-old trees that is perfect for breakfast or afternoon tea on the lawn.
With the transformation complete, we were proud to have received many compliments from the local authorities and professionals for what they have termed “a never-been-seen” design in Venice which also preserve the integrity and essence of the beloved palazzo.
The Bathroom: A Place to Pamper Oneself
Il bagno: un luogo dove volersi bene
When AMAN Resorts approached Denniston to be a part of the refurbishment of Palazzo Papadopoli, a Listed Heritage Venetian Building on the Grand Canal part of the UNESCO Heritage City, Being the last Palazzo in Venice permitted to be converted into a hotel, it was a great challenge. While there was a need to update the 16th century Palazzo with modern conveniences, we wanted to ensure that we retained as much of the building’s charm, history and the Palazzo’s rich...
- Year 2013
- Work finished in 2013
- Status Completed works
- Type Hotel/Resorts / Recovery/Restoration of Historic Buildings