Palazzo Zenobio Venice

Palazzo Zenobio Venice - Dorigny ceiling painting

The Palazzo Zenobio (also called Ca’ Zenobio degli Armeni) is a historic building in Venice. It is located in the Dorsoduro district and is currently used as a youth hostel. It was built towards the end of the 17th century. During the Biennale, it is often used as an exhibition space.

Palazzo Zenobio Venice

Address, opening hours and entrance fee

The address of the Palazzo Zenobio is Fondamenta del Soccorso, Dorsoduro 2597 – 30123 Venice (tel. +39 0415228770). Opening hours: 10:00 to 18:00. Closed Mondays.

History and description

The Palazzo Zenobio was designed and built between 1690 and 1700 by the architect Antonio Gaspari. The client was the Zenobia family from Verona, who had been raised to the peerage in 1647 (after paying a large sum of money) and had bought a Gothic palace from the Morosoni family in 1664.

Gaspari left part of the original portego intact. (A portega is a space that connected the gate on the canal bank to the gate on the land side in Venetian palaces in the times of the Republic.) He then added a serliana to separate it from the new, two-story ballroom. Above the serliana was the space for the orchestra.

Behind the first rooms on either side of the ballroom are two courtyards. The ballroom itself is behind the central balcony of the façade.

At present, part of the Palazzo Zenobio serves as a hostel. It is also often used for exhibitions during the Biennale.

What to see

  • Louis Dorigny painted the trompe-l’oeil ceiling painting depicting “Aurora and the Carraige of Apollo”.
  • The “Allegory of Prudence and Strength” on the ceiling of the portego was also painted by Dorigny.
  • Other artists who painted frescoes in the palace include Luca Carlevariis and Lazzarini.
  • The garden behind the palace, which used to house the library, still has the original Baroque decorations.

Palazzo Zenobio, Venice

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