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Mom with limited mobility wishes to visit Venice-Where to stay?

Mom with limited mobility wishes to visit Venice-Where to stay?

Old Feb 20th, 2008, 06:23 PM
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Mom with limited mobility wishes to visit Venice-Where to stay?

My best friend's 84-year-old mom is a former journalist who wants to return to Venice after a 30-year absence! She has limited mobility and will need a wheelchair at times. She hopes to find a centrally-located hotel that offers handicapped access and wheelchairs for guest use. Any recommendations or is this a crazy idea to begin with? Thanks so much!
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Old Feb 20th, 2008, 06:42 PM
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I Googled "wheelchair travel in Venice, Italy" and came up with what look like a few very useful blogs. It doesn't sound like a crazy idea at all.

Also Google "Global Access Disabled Travel Network."

Search on Fodor's too. I think someone posted a trip report on this subject, although it may have been years ago.
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Old Feb 20th, 2008, 07:02 PM
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www.accessibleitaly.com
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Old Feb 20th, 2008, 07:46 PM
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Thank you so much for the fantastic information! Grazie mille!
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Old Feb 20th, 2008, 11:10 PM
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Hello Weadles, I don't mean to intrude, but was your friend's mother a reporter for the International Herald Tribune? I ask because we had the pleasure of spending an evening in Venice at Harry's Bar with a lovely woman who was and a year later when at a restaurant in San Francisco she was there also. Quite a conincedance!
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 04:54 AM
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Not wishing to be negative, but I'm not sure I can imagine how this would work - since all the bridges have steps, wouldn't she be confined to quite a small area ? I suppose she could get around a bit by waterbus, if there are no steps between her hotel & the nearest waterbus stop, but she would then also be confined to a smallish area wherever she went - apart from the Lido, I suppose ?

I'm not trying to put the idea down, I am genuinely intertested to hear what others think as I have an increasingly disabled MIL who would love to vist Venice, but we thought it wouldn't be possible now.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 05:00 AM
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It's only in Italian, but there is an accessibility map of Venice here:
http://www.comune.venezia.it/flex/cm.../IDPagina/1317

Note that the green areas are wheelchair-accessible, i.e., flat or equipped with ramps.

There are wheelchair-accessible itineraries here:
http://www.comune.venezia.it/flex/cm.../IDPagina/1381
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 06:41 AM
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I shared the elevator in the Doge's Palace with a man in a wheel chair last November (I was limping badly with a not-as-healed as I thought broken ankle) so clearly you can visit Venice that way - but he did have someone with him to help. I also noticed several bridges with ramps built over them, but not many, and I think some were for a race and may have been temporary.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 09:02 AM
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I have to admit when first asked I was quite negative about a person with limited mobility visiting Venice. I've been to Venice a few times during the summer months, and even without physical limitations, navigating through those crowds can be daunting. But thanks to the great advice posted here, I'm feeling more optimistic that my friend's mom will enjoy her visit. Besides, she's 86 ( not 84 as I'd thought!) and feels this may be her last chance ever for such a trip. I know I'll be cheering her on, and hoping it goes well. Will post all about it when she gets back!

To LoveItaly: No, she didn't work for The Herald Tribune. She was with the foreign service, then The Washington Post.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 09:29 AM
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In Venice last month

and though much of the city is not wheelchair friendly due to humpbacked bridges made of steps there is a stretch of Venice where bridges now sport ramps under some program called Accessible Venice or whatever

Basically it's along the water from St Mark's Square south for at least a mile - a very pleasant stretch so many try to get a hotel in that area?

The boats to me did NOT look wheelchair friendly either though not sure about private taxi boats.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 11:30 AM
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Hi Weadles, thanks for your response. I asked as in the 1970's my husband and I along with our teenage daughter were in Harry's Bar for cocktails and dinner. At the table next to us was a charming woman. She was by herself, but somehow we discovered it was her birthday. Long story short we invited her to join us after dinner for dessert, an after dinner drink and an espresso. It turned out she was a reporter with the International Herald Tribune. We had quite an interesting visit with her.

Months later we were in San Francisco to celebrate our daughter's birthday and went to the restaurant of her choice. We suddenly heard a familar voice and looked at the next table and there was the same woman. She was in SF having dinner with her daughter who lived in Berkeley (across the SF Bay). She saw us and came over and after we all finished dinner she and her daughter joined us again for dessert, an after dinner drink and espresso..this time to celebrate our daughter's birthday. Quite a conincidence. I sadly do not remember this woman's name but your post made me wonder if it was the same woman. Thirty year absence, her age, having a daughter (well guess you didn't say son or daughter but I assumed a daughter).
I hope your friend and her mother has a wonderful time in Venice. I am sorry I do not have information about getting around Venice in a wheelchair but it looks like you now have some good information for them. Best regards.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 01:32 PM
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LoveItaly,

What a wonderful story! Thanks so much for posting it here, and thanks, too, for your good wishes!
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