Our month in Venice

Old Jun 18th, 2009, 09:05 AM
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No waning here, just raining.
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Old Jun 18th, 2009, 09:47 AM
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Love your report! I know it's Venice, but 2800 Euros is a lot of money and we would expect everything to work well including the tv!
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Old Aug 13th, 2009, 11:40 PM
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Hello, "marisylvia"

If you're reading this, please contact me by e-mail. I'm worried, because I haven't heard from you for awhile.
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Old Jul 16th, 2010, 01:02 PM
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Casa Allegra no longer meets the standards described above.
Casa Allegra is a two-bedroom flat in Venice, described by the owners, Allegra and Renato Groome as “very clean” and their web pictures portray a well-furnished and impressive unit. The reality does not match their descriptions. We arrived in June 2010 to find the front sections of the building under construction, wrapped in protective covering with construction walls surrounding the entrance with workers in dust masks. We had to essentially “run a gauntlet” every time we entered or left the building. The actual entrances to each flat and the ventilation shaft to the bath and toilet rooms were not shrouded or protected in any manner. While the public was protected from the dust and construction noise, it was all focused inward toward the units in the building. Needless to say, it was not pleasant to cope with construction noise, dust and debris during our week at Casa Allegra. We were never notified in advance of this condition, nor given an option to rebook.
Secondly, the interior walls in every room have some unfinished or exposed portions around the doors or windows, such that small particles of material flake off when the doors or windows are opened or closed. The two bedrooms each have large areas, several square meters in each room, where the paint AND plaster are peeling and falling down, especially when they are touched by a person or suitcase. Some of these fallen pieces are 3-5 inches long. After two days, we found paint and plaster particles falling into our suitcases. The wide gaps in the flooring trap some particles (from the construction, from the exposed materials, from the paint and plaster) and then they get on your feet and are tracked all over and into the beds. It was like camping outdoors, but with potentially toxic building materials around us!
Thirdly, the shower stall has black mould and mildew, which I specifically inquired about, and was assured there was no mold and that everything was “very clean”. It was not clean by anyone’s standards.
The actions by the owners in this case are fraudulent and dishonest and they are unwilling to acknowledge any shortcomings or deficiencies. I recommend that you do not consider staying in Casa Allegra until these defects are repaired.
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Old Jul 17th, 2010, 12:18 PM
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hi sugarloafer,

sorry to read that you had such a negative experience. did you book direct or through an agency? did you pay the entire hire-charge in advance, or pay some when you got there? Was there anyone there for you to complain to?
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Old Sep 16th, 2010, 03:50 PM
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I just revisited this trip report because a good friend is leaving for Venice and I thought she'd enjoy the very interesting and amusing comments from others as well as the report. I'm sorry I abandoned the project. I got distracted and basically out of kilter and lost the momentum I'd had. I need to find a better way to post photos. I want to do a trip report on Germany, but I've had other activities to deal with in the interim.
Sugarloafer, I'm so sorry you had such an awful experience at Casa Allegra! I know what you mean about some of the wood being odd; someone went overboard with knotty pine there. It was clean and in good repair when we were there. There was work being done in the adjoining campiello, where they were replacing pipes, but nothing was happening which affected us. It's such a horror story to be in away from home, stuck in a situation like that. I'd found Renato very responsive to emails, but I was disappointed that I had to buy the caffe presse; however, he did shell out for the wheeled cart.
I feel I owe an apology to all who encouraged me so on this report. I think I'm feeling a bit low about it because John has been able to take only a week off this year due to work demands. He is working with a team on deadlines, and there is no one else who he can ask to fill in for him. We also have to plan for when he retires, whenever that is, and that will affect our ability to travel. We'll have to protect our nest egg--that is today's reality of IRA and 401k instead of pension.
However, I have no complaints in that I already live in an area with plenty to see and do, with a splendid climate. I have no right to cry in my beer, or vino, or Sapphire martini.
Sorry to be such a copout--I'll give it another try, maybe Germany, which was a revelation. I also have to put in some time on trying to get DVDs made of my talented 15 year old granddaughter, who takes classes at Berkeley Repertory Company's Youth Theater. She gave a knockout performance as Judas in "Jesus Christ, Superstar". I have to work on it in iMovie, which takes a lot of tweaking. I could kick myself, as I had to change cards in the middle of one of the most fraught scenes with Judas, Jesus and Mary Magdelene. Sorry for the digression, but I feel I have friends on this site who I left hanging, and I want to explain what I've been up to.
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Old Sep 16th, 2010, 07:43 PM
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marisylvia: I've just re-read your report and am glad it came back up, because I never did explain the "Taconictraveler" name.

First: I live near the Taconic Parkway, which goes straight up the middle of Putnam and Dutchess and Columbia Counties in the Hudson Valley.

There once were the Taghanic Indians, and there is a park up in Columbia County by that name.

I use that handle, as I also write amateur travel articles for various local weeklies - Usually my column is "Taconic Traveler" but sometimes "Going My Way," and also "Travel Texts." I've mostly stopped doing that, although I have a huge collection of those articles which can be found at "shequine.com/travel." Some are sort of old, but they have dates, so you can take them for what they are worth.

Your report was well worth reading twice!!
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Old Sep 16th, 2010, 08:10 PM
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Yay! Good to see you back in print, marisylvia. Sounds like life has been keeping you well and truly occupied.

How proud you must be of your granddaughter; imagine playing Judas at that age! Or any age, for that matter.

I was back to Venice for 5 weeks earlier this year, and stayed at the same apartment. Had COLD weather (below zero, and snow .. made my tropical blood sit up and take notice.) And, I'm going back next March. I'll say hello to the lads who were at La Fondamenta .. they've moved to La Diana.

Ciao, bella.
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Old Sep 18th, 2010, 02:45 AM
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Thanks for the explanation, Taconictraveler. And thanks for the good words about my trip report. I realize I had some momentum going which got interrupted, and I never went back. I'm not sure when we'll return to Europe. Just a bit of sadness there, although the memories are to be treasured.

Hi Yvonne,

I'm sure snow didn't slow you down at all. It must have been beautiful. Your apartment was a good deal, I can see why you returned to it. It's such a great location. If we ever return to Venice, based on Sugarloafer's comments, I think we'll look for another apartment. I felt terrible reading about her experience there, it was so different from ours. I realized Renato could be quirky, but they should never have rented it in that condition.
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Old Sep 18th, 2010, 02:38 PM
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How about just a brief summary and wrap up of your final weeks in Venice?...in needn't have so much detail. You got us all hooked and we need closure
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Old Apr 26th, 2013, 03:40 PM
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I just noticed an embarrassing error (it must be a misprint!) of "there" for "their" when describing the line for the imob card. I am mortified!
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Old Apr 27th, 2013, 03:49 PM
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I just enjoyed reading your trip report again! I love Venice!
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