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A Family Christmas in Padua


Majestic Hotel Toscanelli 2 Via dell'Arco; 39-049/663-244, fax 39-049/876-0025; doubles from $150. Thirty-two rooms. In the heart of the old town, close to Piazza delle Erbe.

Hotel Donatello 120 Piazza del Santo; 39-049/875-0634, fax 39-049/875-0829; doubles from $127. Forty-five rooms across the street from the Basilica di Sant'Antonio.

BEST VALUE Albergo Leon Bianco 12 Piazzetta Pedrocchi; 39-049/657-225, fax 39-049/875-0814; currently closed for renovations, call to confirm. You can't beat this 22-room hotel's location in the center of the old town, across from the famous Caffè Pedrocchi.

Osteria Speroni 36 Via Sperone Speroni; 39-049/875-3370; dinner for two $122; closed Sundays. Three cozy rooms, each with a fireplace. Fish is the specialty. The menu changes daily, so ask the waiter for his recommendations.

Hosteria Padovanino da Renna 1 Via S. Chiara; 39-049/876-5341; dinner for two $105; closed Sundays. Excellent radicchio dishes, pasta, and a huge selection of desserts.

Per Bacco 10 Piazzale Ponte Corvo; 39-049/875-4664; dinner for two $55. Innovative dishes made from outstanding ingredients that come from all around Italy. The wine list has more than 900 labels.

Osteria dei Fabbri 13 Via dei Fabbri; 39-049/650-336; dinner for two $39. A trattoria that serves good pasta dishes.

Offelleria dell'Oca 6 Via San Martino e Solferino; 39-049/876-3034. Quiet café that also serves light lunches.

Enoteca 1 Via Pietro d'Abano; 39-049/875-0083; dinner for two $44; closed Sunday and Monday. Tavern with live music on weekends.

Enoteca da Severino 44 Via del Santo; 39-049/650-697. One of the city's oldest wine bars.

Caffè Pedrocchi 3 Via 8 Febbraio; 39-049/876-4674. Built in 1831, this café, across from the University of Padua, was once a hangout for intellectuals. While most Paduans consider it overpriced, it's worth a visit for its eclectic architecture.

Caffè Cavour 10 Piazza Cavour; 39-049/875-1224. Great for ice cream and people-watching.

Pasticceria Graziati Piazza della Frutta; 39-049/875-1014. The oldest pastry shop in town.

Pasticceria Brigenti Piazza dei Signori; 39-049/875-1560. Excellent pastries, including panettone, a Christmas cake.

Roberto Callegari 8 Via Davila; 39-049/875-5803. The best place in town for jewelry.

L'Antiquario Gemmologo 6 Via Davila; 39-049/664-195. Callegari's brother sells antique silver and jewelry next door.

Makola 6 Piazza Garzeria; 39-049/876-2486. Women's clothing that makes you wish you had lived during the most elegant periods of the fifties and sixties.

Al Duca d'Aosta 48 Via San Fermo; 39-049/876-1466. Like Barneys, with the latest chic fashions for men and women.

Minuzzi 66 Riviera dei Ponti Romani; 39-049/875-1578. Designer wear from Missoni to Dolce & Gabbana.

Paolo Tonali 10 Via Giacomo Matteotti; 39-049/875-6600. Women's clothing.

Amadio Galleria Pedrocchi; 39-049/875-2150. A century-old specialist in men's sportswear and furnishings.

Fuso d'Oro Galleria Ezzelino, 21—25 Via Marsilio da Padova; 39-049/661-316. Zegna fabrics; men's suits, shirts, ties.

Camiceria Moderna 139 Via del Santo; 39-049/875-1923. Tailor-made shirts.

Via San Fermo A street with a wide variety of designer shops, including Hermès, Gucci, Prada, Armani, and Max Mara.

Basilica di Sant'Antonio Saint Anthony came to Padua in the early 1200's and preached here until his death in 1231. A year and a half later, his tomb was attracting enough pilgrims to warrant the construction of the basilica. Inside are works by Giotto, Donatello, and de' Menabuoi.

The Baptistery The 13th-century Baptistery, beside the Duomo, features frescoes of the Old and New Testament by de' Menabuoi.

Scrovegni Chapel Commissioned in 1303 by Enrico Scrovegni to atone for the sins of his father, a usurer so vicious that Dante gave him a place in the Inferno. Scrovegni hired Giotto, Dante's favorite artist, to illustrate the lives of Mary and Jesus and the story of the Passion.

Palazzo della Ragione Padua's assembly hall, built in 1210, is one of the largest medieval halls in existence. Miretto frescoes depict astrological theories and secular life.

The Eremitani One of the biggest artistic losses of World War II was the destruction, by Allied bombing, of Mantegna's frescoes in the 14th-century church. The rebuilt church features the Martyrdom of Saint Christopher, which was removed before the war, and fragments of a fresco portraying the martyrdom of Saint James.

University of Padua Italy's second-oldest university was established in 1222. Galileo taught physics here. Dante and Petrarch studied at the school. The world's first permanent anatomy theater was built here in 1594. Its medical and law schools are among the best in Europe.

Prato della Valle The largest square in Italy, surrounded by a moat and 78 statues of famous Paduans.


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