The Alcatraz Hilton
Ha! I was transferred by water taxi from the Venice airport where we turned in our rental car. As we approached the huge Hilton, I thought it looked like a restored prison or insane asylum. I was close. It had been a textile factory. This sunset shot makes it look almost glamorous:
Then I learned that the Hilton was on another island, Giudecca . . . and separated from the main part of Venice. In earlier visits here, I especially enjoyed wandering around in the maze of streets and small canals, getting lost, escaping the crowds around St. Mark's Square. There was now a major inconvenience for me: Hilton guests had to take a shuttle boat to get to Venice proper. The shuttle docked at "St. Mark’s Square," but there was a long walk on the hot waterfront mobbed with tourists. Needless to say, I only made this trip once.
The shuttle made an intermediate stop, which angered me even more. Next to this stop was the lovely little Pensione Seguso, where I’d stayed once before. I loved it there.
It was fun walking around, seeing familiar sights:
The Venice Biennale 2013 was in full swing. The main location for this renowned art festival is Venice’s Arsenal, but I decided to just wander around my old neighborhood. I kept coming across exhibits associated with the Biennale. I stopped at an interesting video exhibit by two Palestinian artists, then noticed a large garden in the back devoted to another art (?) exhibit. The garden was filled with stacks of cardboard cartons like this:
I was encouraged to design and assemble my own carton contribution to the exhibit, but kept walking.
Peggy Guggenheim Museum
I headed for something more familiar – the museum American heiress Peggy Guggenheim created from her house on the Grand Canal. The museum -- in a spectacular setting -- is a must-see for modern art lovers.
I’d visited the museum before but this time I took the audio tour, which was packed with interesting information. One story concerned this sculpture on the terrace at the back of the museum that looks out on the Grand Canal:
See the valuable information you learn from museum audio tours?