Gritti Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel
Starwood’s Luxury Collection pulled out all the stops to renovate Venice’s legendary hotel on the Grand Canal, with an estimated price tag of $55 million. The results of the restoration are staggering: more than 200 Rubelli silk wall coverings and textiles, including archive patterns last produced in the 18th century, were re-created, and around 280 antique pieces refurbished, as were some 600 light fixtures, among them dozens of one-off Murano chandeliers. Spacious rooms incorporate rich terrazzo floors and a muted palette, a combination that adds up to understated splendor rather than over-the-top luxury. The bathrooms compensate for their often diminutive size with extravagant cladding in marble from five regions of Italy. We’d love to see a slightly more relaxed lunchtime menu at the canal-front Club del Doge restaurant, but after feasting on a faultless lemon, black pepper, and Parmesan linguine at dinner, it’s gauche to complain.