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Shopping in Venice

The main shopping area for clothing, shoes, accessories and jewellery is in the narrow streets between San Marco and the Rialto, particularly the Mercerie and around Campo San Luca. The more upmarket shops are west of St Mark's Square. For arty stuff, ranging from Carnevale masks and costumes through ceramics and on to model gondolas, San Polo is the place to hunt. Another Venetian speciality is marbled paper - you'll find people doing this all over town. Many places open on Sunday during the tourist season (which means at least Easter to October). Some shops close for the holidays for all or part of August.

Le Barche, Venice Shopping Places

Le Barche (Piazza XXVII Ottobre I, open 9am-8.30pm Tuesday to Saturday, and 2pm-8.30pm on Monday). There are no serious department stores in Venice itself. For this kind of thing you will need to head for Mestre to this shopping complex, just off Piazza XXII Marzo in the centre of town. It's home to several of the country's leading stores, including Feltrinelli, the bookshop chain, Ricordi Mediastore, for CDs and music, Coin, a leading budget department store and PAM, particularly noted for its value-for-money food department. For clothes you could try Belfe and Belfe, on the ground floor. Coin (Salizzada San Giovanni Grisostomo 5790, Cannaregio). A recently arrived tenant in central Venice, the shop brings a bit of department-store action to canalside shoppers, with this branch specialising in affordable men's and women's clothes and accessories.

Laboratorio del Gerva venice

Laboratorio del Gerva (Campo Bandiera e Moro 3725, Castello). In a higgledy-piggledy workshop, enough goods are stacked to whet the appetite of any antiques collector. If you are a serious purchaser, ask about the warehouse (which you can arrange to see by appointment, if genuinely interested). Michele Gervasuti is continuing the work of his father, Eugenio, a master craftsperson who opened the shop here in 1959. They concentrate on restoration and are involved in important projects across the city. Many shops (and artists in the city's numerous squares) sell simple watercolours of typical Venetian scenes. Several small art galleries are also dotted about the city. The single biggest concentration of galleries, containing all kinds of stuff, is on the streets that lie between the Gallerie dell' Accademia and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection. A few stragglers line Calle del Bastion on the approach to the former Chiesa di San Gregorio (just east of the Guggenheim). Another area to look is Calle delle Carrozze, close to Palazzo Grassi.

Bugno Samueli Art Gallery venice

Bugno Samueli Art Gallery (Campo San Fantin 1996/a). This gallery has some works by contemporary artists on permanent display, although money is the object. While you might not be able to afford a Miro or De Chirico, there's plenty of other material for the modern art collector. Needless to say, this is not a hobby for impecunious backpackers (or anybody else short of Rockefeller status). Studio Aoristico di Matteo lo Greco (Campo San Fantin 1998). This is a one-man show with some interesting sculpture and paintings. Galleria Traghetto (Calle delle Ostreghe 2457). Here you will find a curious mix of sculpture and paintings.