The Westin Europa & Regina in Venice started out as 5 separate palaces in the 18th and 19th centuries. Over the years, one by one the palaces were combined and turned into hotels, and esteemed painter Claude Monet even stayed at one. In 1976 the remaining two hotels were merged, restored, and became Hotel Europa & Regina. 1998 saw the property join SPG and turn into a Westin in 2000, creating The Westin Europa & Regina. Wanting a quiet, beautiful hotel in Venice away from the crowds of St Mark’s square for a few nights, The Westin Europa & Regina seemed perfect.
The hotel was a quick 5 minute walk from St Mark’s Square and it was tucked away in a quiet courtyard. Though I drove into Venice (parking at the Piazza Roma parking garage for 26 EUR per day) and took a water taxi, a vaporetto (waterbus) straight from the Airport is easy too, and the stop nearest the hotel is S. Marco-Vallaresso. The hotel lobby was gorgeous, with lots of marble and dark woods. The check-in staff were great, inquiring about my trip and telling me what to expect during my stay. I had booked a Classic room, but they offered a complimentary upgrade to a Luxury Suite, in recognition of SPG Platinum status. This was kind of a big deal, because I happened to be there during the annual Regata Storica in the Voga alla Veneta, a popular watery parade down the Grand Canal.
The room was bigger than I expected at over 600 square feet. I never heard any noise from any of the surrounding rooms either. I had been expecting a small basic room, and loved the upgrade. The bedroom was decorated in tones of ivory, and the walls were covered in patterned silk. Chandeliers featured Murano glass, and there were velvet padded benches at the foot of the bed. The armoire was large enough to hang all of my clothes, and the bed was extraordinarily comfortable.
Off to the side of the bathroom there was a little dressing table with a window that offered natural light. The bathroom had double sinks and plenty of counter space. The amenities were Westin’s signature White Tea, which seemed a bit out of place in such a grand 18th century style suite. There was a marble tub/shower combo with a shower curtain, but I was pleased that at least the tub wasn’t raised up. There were plenty of oversized towels.
The sitting room was large and decorated in deep blues. Silky drapes hung as a partition between the sitting room and bedroom, and there were even fresh orchids on a table near the window. The best part of the suite was the amazing view. There were two sets of french doors in the sitting room, and both opened to a phenomenal view of the Grand Canal!
There was a Juliet balcony and I dragged two of the heavy upholstered chairs from the sitting room over and squeezed them half onto the balcony. Pleased with myself, I grabbed one of the bottles of water and sat down to watch part of one of the gondola races. The sun was warm but not uncomfortable, so it turned out to be a great spot to enjoy some sun and watch the events without even having to go downstairs.
I had chosen breakfast as the Platinum amenity, and it was served on the terrace of La Cusina. The restaurant opened at 7am and I picked a table right on the water with beautiful views of the Canal. The breakfast buffet was pretty extensive with rolls and breads and several types of pastries. The kitchen had a new recipe posted daily on their board, included classic Venetian ones. Smoothies, yogurt, and fruit were all offered. Crispy potatoes with Rosemary, quiche and scrambled eggs were served in huge bowls and when those were emptied new hot options appeared.
Elite Status Recognition & Benefits
As a Platinum guest, I was given an upgrade from a Classic room to a Luxury Suite with a Grand Canal view that was outstanding. Full breakfast including several specialty items and an unbeatable location on the Grand Canal was romantic. Bottles of still water were replaced at turn-down each evening, and staff was quick to answer the phone.
Cost & Summary
I had booked the room for 204 EUR a night as a SPG Hot Escapes rate, and I think the hotel offered outstanding value. Positioned right on the Grand Canal yet away from the crowds of tourists, this hotel was just what I wanted as far as location went. I could take a short walk to the popular tourist attractions in St Mark’s Square, and retreat back to the quiet courtyard of the hotel. Breakfast was delicious and had stellar views. With the luxury suite, the value for money was incredible. If I’d had a standard Classic room like I had booked I’m not sure if I would have felt it to be such a phenomenal stay but the location was still great.