How Venice regained its position as the European luxury capital

Aymeric Mantoux

By Aymeric Mantoux29 septembre 2022

Post-covid, the Doges city is experiencing a true renaissance. New art foundations, palaces, luxury houses are settling there during the Biennale, bringing a new aura to the Serenissima.

Cartier is a partner of the Mostra, the International Film Festival (Cartier)

Over the last two years Venice has once again become the resplendent city of the Doges that it should never have ceased to be

Servane Giol, author

Everywhere in Venice, on the facades of historic buildings undergoing renovation, billboards display ads by the biggest luxury brands. Indeed, the Biennale of Contemporary Art and the Venice International Film Festival attract a lot of people. “It's because of these links between contemporary art, preservation of past treasures, old families and new stars that I particularly like the atmosphere of the Biennale of Contemporary Art’s opening week," says Nazanin Lankarani, a journalist for the New York Times and a Venetian at heart. There are incredible mixes in magical places. That's what people come to Venice for." With Covid, business in the thousand-year-old lake city came to an abrupt halt after decades of frenetic tourism. A pause that many saw as salutary. "I shouldn't say this, but over the last two years Venice has once again become the resplendent city of the Doges that it should never have ceased to be," says Servane Giol, who just published a book with Flammarion dedicated to the personalities who are making reviving the city.



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Great names of luxury are settling in

Emma Chamberlain in Venice for the film festival with Cartier (Cartier)

Cartier, partner of the Mostra, the international film festival, is delighted with this revival, which attracts more international stars and directors every year in September. The company is consistent and has supported Homo Faber, the international cultural festival in Venice that celebrates craftsmanship, arts and craftsmen from around the world, since its inception, under the impetus of the Michelangelo Foundation. It has brought to Venice all the great names of the luxury world, as well as contemporary artists.

Industry players are jostling for position at the gates of the City of the Doges to profile their partnerships, according to well-established prerogatives, such as Rolex, a major sponsor and long-time supporter of the Architecture Biennale. Another strategic partner, Louis Vuitton, reaffirmed its interest in Venice's living heritage last May by fully financing the restoration of Ca' D'Oro, a historic building on the Grand Canal. This 15th century flamboyant gothic architectural jewel is rumored to have inspired the brand's founder to create his famous emblematic flower. Already invested in initiatives to support contemporary art for many years, Louis Vuitton has been a partner of Venetian Heritage since 2010. On this occasion, Louis Vuitton organized a gala dinner in the Giorgio Franchetti Gallery with the famous interior designer Peter Marino, who is very active in Venitian Heritage, bringing together stars and cultural actors.

During the health crisis, tourism came to a halt in Venice, giving the city a charm that some people had forgotten (Shutterstock)

“This soul is precisely Venice’s inimitable asset”, says Jasmine Spezie, head of an international communications agency that has worked for Ruinart. "This year, the inaugural week of the Biennale in May was literally taken over. Everyone wanted to come. And it was impossible to find a table in the best establishments." That week, the UHNWIs (Ultra High Net Worth Individuals) invited by the organizers of the contemporary art event, crossed paths with those of Audemars Piguet or Van Cleef & Arpels in the black-tie evenings of the palazzi, under the amazed eyes of the crowd.

Venice, an opportunity for art patrons

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