"Secret itineraries tour" is nice, but I expected it to be more exciting.
Reservation e-mail says, that you have to pick up the ticket at least 10 minutes before start of the tour. In fact you can do that much earlier - you are allowed to enter the palace at the moment the ticket is printed - say 2 hours earlier, go and see regular exposition. With that background the "Secret itineraries tour" will be much more interesting.
Is the biggest civil building of Venice. It was sit of Dux and of the most importants magistracy of the republic, site of the goverment and culturals institutions. Currently some rooms and stays can be visited, in it there are paints of the most knows artist like acopo e Domenico Tintoretto, paolo Veronese, Tiziano, Giovanni Bellini, Palma il Giovane o Domenico Tiepolo.
Es el edificio civil mas grande de Venecia. Fue sede del Dux y de las magistraturas mas importantes de la republica, sede del gobierno y de instituciones culturales. En la actualidad se pueden visitar varias estancias y salones, en ellas se pueden encontrar pinturas de artistas conocidos como Jacopo e Domenico Tintoretto, paolo Veronese, Tiziano, Giovanni Bellini, Palma il Giovane o Domenico Tiepolo.
located next to the piazza san marco, the dodge's palace is one of the most famous sites in venice. this is the home and offices of the doges of venice. the venetian republic began in the 9th century AD and lasted almost a thousand years until 1797. there where 76 doges of venice. there is a lot to see in this opulent building, some examples, the porta della carta, (pictured), sala del maggior consiglio, (great council hall), sala dello scudo, (map room), and the court of the room of the cord, (torture chamber).
Doge’s Palace or “Palazzo Ducale” this old palace was a combination of the government, court, torture chamber and prison, The palace is filled with frescoes, paintings and a few examples of statuary by some of the Renaissance’s greatest artists.
The ”bridge of sighs” connects the palace and the prison was built in the 17th century, across the cannel where the prisoners walked across and took one last look of Venice prior to their execution or incarceration.
It has a Gothic architecture and is an extended arched columns that give a lot of elegance to the structure. The first building was in 812 and bult again after an uprising, buringing the building in 976. In 1309 the latest construction began and complete in 1424. It is designed by architect Filippio Calandario. It was burned badly in 1574.
This was a site of the center of power for the Doge. The Ventian era lasted 1,100 years beginning in 697AD until Napoleon took control in 1797. It has primarily white and red marble for the theme. The structure held the government administration of Venice, the Ducal/Doges living quarters. The latest era of decline came after the Napoleon collapse. The Austrians took control, but the palace was nearly unused. In 1866, the democracy brought it back into activity and it became a museum in 1923 when the Veneto region got control.
The lower level has surrounding arches that set off the second level leading to the real working activity of the palace. There are 35 arches and a series of second level loggia that stretch the 145 meters length/width of the bulding.The whole interior is a large courtyard. The palace also connects directly to St. Marks BAsilica in order for them to attend ceremonies and events form private entrances. The Hall of the Great Council is the most impressive and holds paintings of the first 76 Doges. But that is only one of many unbelievable "rooms" in the palace. Some include the Sala della Collegio with the gold ceiling; full length wall maps of times 1300-1800, and many large world globes of the time, Anticollegio to greet foreign ambassadors, Sala Scrutinio with Tinteretto paintings, family art of Bellini, the Senate chamber that held 120 Senators, and the apartments for Doges. The sea room features the power of the Venice era and shows a conflict battle from 1571 with the Greeks territory. There also is a wood carving of the city done by Barberi, which is a wonder or fine work taking much time to complete. The golden stairway is no doubt one of the best wonders, with gold gilded sculpture surrounding the frescoes in the ceilings for three levels. Another is the stairway of the Giants, with huge statues of Neptune and Mars, that was meant to impress and intimidate the visitors coming to the Doges compound. Doge Grimani contributed a lot to the imporvements in the palace. The Doge nearly broke the treasury with all of their purchases. Most items and expantion is form the 13-14th century.
Tickets individually are 11 Euro. If you buy a Venice card for 18 Euro, you can also enter Correr Museo, and many others in the vicinity. It also allows you to walk up to the front if you reserve ahead of time to get the tickets. Even though a designated time was given, we went to pick tickets up ahead and were told to just go in now, and did.
The Doge's Palace is a gothic palace in Venice. In Italian it is called the Palazzo Ducale di Venezia. The palace was the residence of the Doge of Venice.
[For about a thousand years, the chief magistrate and leader of the Most Serene Republic of Venice was styled the Doge (in ven. Doxe), a rare but not unique Italian title derived from the Latin Dux, as the major Italian parallels Duce and Duca and the English Duke. Doges of Venice were elected for life by the city-state's aristocracy. Commonly the person selected as Doge was the shrewdest elder in the city. The Venetian combination of elaborate monarchic pomp and a republican (though "aristocrati") constitution with intricate checks and balances makes La serenissima Venice a textbook example of a crowned republic.]
Its two most visible facades look towards the Venetian Lagoon and St Mark's Square, or rather the Piazzetta. The use of arcading in the lower stories produces an interesting "gravity-defying" effect. There is also effective use of colour contrasts.
The current palace was largely constructed from 1309 to 1424, designed perhaps by Filippo Calendario. It replaced earlier fortified buildings of which relatively little is known. Giovanni and Bartolomeo Bon created the Porta della Carta in 1442, a monumental late-gothic gate on the Piazzetta side of the palace. This gate leads to a central courtyard.
The palace was badly damaged by fire in 1574. In the subsequent rebuilding work it was decided to respect the original gothic style, despite the submission of a neo-classical alternative design by Palladio. However, there are some classical features, for example since the sixteenth century the palace has been linked to the prison by the Bridge of Sighs.
As well as being the ducal residence, the palace housed political institutions of the Republic of Venice until the Napoleonic occupation of the city. Venice was ruled by an aristocratic elite, but there was a facility for citizens to submit written complaints at what was known as the Bussola chamber.
The building is preserved as a museum. Inside the visitor can see paintings by Tintoretto and Veronese, which glorify the Venetian state.
Taken from Wikipedia
The outside is so very dignified, but the inside holds more treasure and the Arco Foscari. The courtyard is expansive and open and built in stages 1485-1600 with a mix of styles, like one side is Renaissance, south & west gothic. It allows you to take in the views to the top, and see the St. Mark's BAsilica adjunct to the Doges. Stairway to the giants with huge statues of Neptune and Mars was under renovation while we were there, but the impressive view of the stairs still is a sight. It was built by Sansovino in mid 1500's. From upper floors, the look down back into the courtyard is a wonder to behold. The marble facade to St. Mark's Basilica is a masterpiece of work and the tall statues of marble are to behold as a great presentation of the wonder they made in their day.
Such rooms to behold include Hall of Great Council with 76 Doge paintings, Museo dell'Opera, Anticollegio where foreign dignitaries were met, Sala dela Sculo with enormous maps and globes of the era, the elaborate Doge apartments, Sala of the Consiglio Dieci(10), Sala deleleQuattro, Sala del Collegio room by Palladio after the fire of 1574 being reworked, and now mostly work sculpted art-and many more.
This is close, if not exceeding the other famed European palaces in splendor, in my opinion.
The Scala D'Oro-golden stairway was originally designed by Sansovino and finished by Scarpagnino in 1559, before the large fire of 1574. The name is from the the gold stucco that is gold emulate surrounding the many frescoes that go the length of 4 levels. The gold and white stucco ornate sculpture encompasses the frescoes that are very beautiful it their own right.
Doge's palace is famous for its history and decor and the fact it housed the leader's of Venice throughout the years, but most people come for the Bridge of Sighs that connects Doge's Palace to the old prison. However don't get to caught up in trying to find the Bridge of Sigh's because Doge's Palace itself is magnificent. From its stunning courtyard to the elaborate rooms that housed the Doge's, this is one palace that is worth it's admission price! Speaking of admission, as of Feb. 2008 the cost of admission is 13 euro and includes admission to the Museo Correr. If your going during the summer season and want to avoid the long lines, you can purchase your ticket online at www.tickitaly.com, however there is an additional booking fee if you go that route.
On view inside are the Doge’s apartments, the armory, and the ancient dungeons that are reached by crossing the Bridge of Sighs. The most unforgettable room, though (and supposedly the largest in Europe) is the Grand Salon, with its priceless coffered ceiling and paintings by Tintoretto and Veronese. You can see the robes once worn by the Doges at the Correr Museum, which is housed in a spectacular palazzo and also traces the development of Venetian painting from the 14th to the 16th centuries. An interesting example of this is the Bellini Room, which contains works by four generations of Venice’s most famed artistic family.
The first Ducal Palace, or palace for the Doge was the seat of the government of Venice for centuries. As well as being the home of the Doge (the elected ruler of Venice) it was the venue for its law courts, its civil administration and bureaucracy and — until its relocation across the Bridge of Sighs — the city jail.
The present palace was built mainly in the 14th century, and the façade overlooking the Piazzetta mostly dates from the first half of the 15th century.
I had made a reservation for an English 'Secret Passage' tour at the Palazzo Ducale for Mon. morning but when we got there, it was closed. There was a strike of the attendants. Tuesday, we tried the 'Secret Passage' tour again, this time they weren't striking, and we got in. Our son says that this tour was his favorite part of Venice. The guide told many stories including the escape of Casanova (?) from the prisons.
THE Scala dei Giganti OR GIANT'S STAIRWAY OR Staircase in the PALAZZO DUCALE Courtyard, so-called because of two huge statues of MARS and NEPTUNE at the top symbolizing the Republic's authority over land and sea, was done by Sansovino: Here the Doge's crowning took place, an important happening for Venice , celebrated with great pomp.
Climbing to the top the Doge received the doge's horn (CORNO DUCALE) and pronounced the Promissione, THE PROMISE, to defend and respect the Serenissima constitution forever.
The Doges Palace was the heart of the government of the Republic of Venice. It is right next to Basilica di San Marco
Palazzo Ducale is a magnificent building, packed full of treasures and ornaments.. It was the home of the Doges, Venice's rulers. The Doge was elected from among the aristocratic families and ruled for life.
Inside of the palace there are many peaces of the masters of Venetian art, including Veronese, Titian and Tintoretto.
The Hidden place inside the Palazzo Ducale and the venitian authorities
You need to book this tour in advance for about 16 euros per pax. This gives you access to the Palazo Ducale as such so before and/or after the tour, you can visit the "open" rooms of the palazo. Above that, as you need to collect you ticket/booking beforehand, you avoid the long queue at the entrance of the palazo.