With hotels seemingly as numerous as gondolas in Venice, a recommendation can help navigate the waters – these budget hotels offer palazzo paradise at penny-pinching prices.
Finding the right hotel in a city that’s packed with them can be quite a tall order. As tourism has become the main cog of Venice’s economy and 20 million visitors pass through the city each year, it seems there’s a hotel on every corner. Prices can rise as high as the acqua alta, but shopping around for an affordable hotel is well worth your while – Culture Trip has chosen 10 of the best cheap hotels in Venice to help you get started.
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Hotel L’Orologio mixes modern design with historical architecture | Courtesy of Hotel L’Orologio / Hotels.com
This beautifully renovated palace has a unique horological theme: beautiful clocks and clock-focused art can be found in every room, with original period features contrasting with a backdrop of bold colours and modern design. In the highly sought-after Rialto area of the San Polo sestiere, nuzzling the Grand Canal, L’Orologio is moments from the Mercato vaporetto (water bus) stop and a short walk from some of the best restaurants on the island. And if the quirky design, luxurious breakfast and fantastic location aren’t enough to tempt you, the welcoming staff and wallet-friendly prices should be.
Tucked away in the artistic sestiere of Castello, shrouded from the crowds of the tourist centre and just moments from the site of the Venice Biennale for both art and architecture, this hotel will show you just why Venice is also known as La Serenissima. This spacious renovation marries classic and retro design, combined with exceptional service from the moment you arrive at reception to the minute you rest your head on the pillow. Rooms here offer great value for money, and many of them circle the hotel’s walled garden; a calming sanctuary for the weary visitor after a hard day of sightseeing.
Good deals in San Marco are hard to find; Hotel Serenissima is one of the rare few that offer an affordable stay in the heart of the city. Just minutes from St Mark’s Square and the basilica, this charmingly traditional hotel presents you with a slice of Venice’s past with classic Venetian design features in every room (expect to find lots of gold finishes and luxurious textiles). The incredibly friendly hotel staff are available daily to point you in the right direction or provide any recommendations you require for smooth sailing in the city. With twin, double or single rooms available and an authentic Venetian breakfast of pastries, you can see why this is a favourite with visitors seeking good value for money in Venice.
The Dorsoduro was art collector Peggy Guggenheim’s favourite part of town, and this incredibly romantic hotel will make you fall in love with the sestiere, too. Based on the south facing waterfront promenade of the Zattere, canal views galore come at a surprisingly reasonable price at Palazzo Veneziano. Inside you’ll find slick, minimalist design, featuring excellent facilities such as jacuzzi suites, a spacious dining room where you can enjoy your complimentary buffet breakfast, and a sophisticated bar area for that final nightcap. The location is perfect for exploring during quiet evening strolls, when the majority of the day-trip tourists leave the island.
In balmy Venetian summers, air-conditioned rooms are a godsend; this affordable boutique hotel provides a welcome respite after long days under the sun. The historic sestiere of Cannaregio, on the north side of the island, is calmer than more central locations but brimming with enough cool cocktail bars and local restaurants in the surrounding area to keep you entertained during the evenings. With all rooms having an en-suite bathroom and a triple room bookable for groups of friends or families travelling together, the Al Mascaron Ridente is an incredibly good value.
Antico Capon is a charming family-run hotel in a great neighbourhood | Courtesy of Hotel Antico Capon / Booking.com
Get away from the tourist hubs and immerse yourself in the local delights of Venice’s best kept secret, Campo Santa Margherita in Dorsodoro. A key feature of this square, Antico Capon is a small family-run hotel that has two particularly lovely little rooms above the front door overlooking the busy Campo (Venetian for square) that, while compact, are spotlessly clean and an absolute delight to wake up in. The friendly proprietors of this homely hotel have been welcoming guests for decades; they’re happy to recommend local cheap eats, activities in the city, and will often arrange breakfast provisions in neighbouring cafés. What this place lacks in fancy facilities, it more than makes up for in hospitality and local charm.
This cheap and cheerful hotel features some delightfully retro décor in its basic but clean rooms. Despite the low prices, all rooms have a canal view, and the hotel even has single rooms for solo travellers on a budget. The friendly staff provide a free Italian-style breakfast of breads, hams and cheeses every morning, but the real selling point here is the flower-laden roof terrace overlooking a canal; the perfect place to rest and watch the world go by. Hotel dalla Mora is also well located: once you get the hang of navigating the winding streets of the Santa Croce neighbourhood, you’ll discover you’re just a short walk from the Piazzale Roma bus terminus and the Rialto Bridge.
Staying on Venice’s sister island of Giudecca, just south of the main island, is a peaceful and particularly frugal option, as this fabulous hotel proves. Filled with artists’ studios and galleries and the homes of visiting celebrities and locals alike, Giudecca is popular for visitors who appreciate getting away from the crowds. This hotel lovingly presents single, double and triple rooms featuring exposed beams and modern design that come at almost half the price of its main island counterparts. With a glass conservatory breakfast room and views across the water to St Mark’s Square (just 10 minutes away via vaporetto), it’s easy to see Hotel Giudecca Venezia’s appeal.
This traditional Venetian-style inn, found in Campo Santa Marina, is equidistant from the Rialto Bridge and the St Mark’s area, which makes it a fantastic spot from which to explore the city. The hotel itself is filled with maximalist design and vast swathes of flowing textiles. There are rooms available for all budgets, many featuring a handy bathtub to soak your feet after all the walking, and all hosting windows with a lovely view of the square below. A fantastic and sprawling breakfast is included in your stay. Additionally, the Hotel Santa Marina is just a stone’s throw from useful local supermarket amenities and architectural treasures such as Basilica Santi Giovanni e Paolo, which hosted the funeral services of all of Venice’s doges from the 15th century onwards – you can visit the tombs of 25 in the basilica.
Just a short walk from the Piazzale Roma bus terminus and conveniently located near a number of vaporetto stops, Hotel Tiziano is snuggled away in a quiet part of the vibrant neighbourhood of Dorsodoro. Smart interiors with bold design and pastel colours provide a modern take on traditional Venetian decor without losing any of the luxurious touches innate in the city’s style. Rooms are affordably priced and come in a range of sizes including singles, doubles, twins, triples, and even a few annexed apartments for larger groups and families. A short stroll to the Zattere or Campo Santa Margherita in either direction will set you right for fantastic dinner options and a late evening Spritz.