The Rialto is famous for its fresh fish, caught that morning in the lagoon. Be sure to get there early to find the best buys! You will also find fruit and vegetable stalls, and, in the surrounding streets, butchers' shops selling pheasants, quail, venison and wild boar, cheese shops, herbs and spice shop (Drogheria Mascari), bread shops, coffee shop Open Monday to Saturday, 8am to 1pm - no fish on Mondays.
Campo Santa Margerita
Fruit and vegetable market, open most days.
Strada Nuova, Cannaregio
Another excellent fruit and vegetable market.
Via Garibaldi, Castello
Lively daily street market and shops- fruit and vegetables, fish, butcher, organic shop, Omeopatic Pharmacy, fresh pasta.
With so many wonderful shops to choose from, it's difficult to know where to start! Here is a small selection of my favourites.
Bottega Veneta, Calle Vallaresso, San Marco 1337,
Tel: 041 522 8489
Say no more. Handbag heaven.
Cartapesta, Barbaria delle Tolle, Castello
Masks and other items in papier mache and leather - you can put aside a good hour to browse in here.
Cenerentola, Rio Terra'Nomboli, San Polo 2600/A
Tel: 041 523 2006
Beautiful lampshades exquisitely crafted and also custom made.
Codognato, Calle dell'Ascensione, San Marco 1295
Tel: 041 5225042
Fantastic collection of jewellery: seas of emeralds and pearls in all sorts of styles.
Cornici Trevisanello, Campo San Vio, tel 041 520 7779
This workshop is home to a father, son and daughter team that makes beautiful gilded frames, many with pearl, mirror and glass inlay. Custom orders and shipping are not a problem.
Il Prato: Legatoria, Calle de le Ostreghe 2457/58
Tel: 041 523 1148, fax 041 528 7928, firstname.lastname@example.org
A real find - my favourite shop in Venice. Exquisite leather goods from cigar cases with temperature controls to elegant solitaire boards all beautifully crafted using the same manufacturer as Hermes. Good initialled stationary as well. The owner's beagle is the icing on the cake for me - absolutely adorable. Also has US distributor: Lucy Zahram and Co, Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills CA (tel: 800 828 1333).
Marina e Susanna Sent, shops in Campo San Vio and S.Moisè bridge
Gorgeous glass jewels, bowls, plates, lamps. Their work is inventive, cutting edge yet classic, and chic. Their glass bubble necklace has been carried in the MoMa for many years, and during the Biennales parties! www.marinaesusannasent.com
Mondo Novo, Rio Terra Canal, Campo Santa Margherita, Dorsoduro.
Tel: 041 528 7344
Another place for masks. Word on the street is that Kubrick came here to collect masks for a well known scene in Eyes Wide Shut.
Panificio Volpe, Calle Ghetto Vecchio, Cannaregio 1143
Tel: 041 715178
A pastry shop not to be missed: breads and sweets in the Jewish tradition. Deer's horns packed full of crema di mandorla (almond fondant), tiny delicate candles made of sugar and much, much more for those with a sweet tooth.
Paolin in Campo Santa Stefano - in my opinion the best gelateria in Venice. Heavenly after an afternoon on your feet.
Piedàterre, Rialto Arcade
In the dream-like atmosphere of an historical porch, sophisticate and elegant handcrafted creations take their shape, never being predictable. Furlane Slippers that are luxurious shoes, taken from the ancient tradition and updated in many forms and colours.
Rubelli Fabrics, Palazzo Corner Spinelli, San Marco 3877
Tel: 041 523 6110, www.rubelli.com
Wonderful collections, luxurious silks and quality cottons. If you can't get to Venice in the meantime you tempt yourself in the Chelsea Harbour Design Centre: H A Percherton Ltd (tel: 020 7349 1590) has a concession - not quite the same as being in Venice but still fun all the same.....
Vittorio Trois, Campo San Maurizio, San Marco 2666
Tel: 041 522 2905)
Workshop that sells original Fortuny fabrics for dresses and for furnishings as well. Divine. (Also see Venetia Stadium for lamps, furnishings and scarves: San Marco 2425, Calle Larga 22 Marzo. Tel: 041 5236953)
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