Solo dining in Venice?

Oct 9th, 2007, 04:09 PM
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Solo dining in Venice?

I'll be staying in Venice for the first time in November (I'm not counting the three hour between trains "taste test", designed to see whether I needed to plan a real visit).

I'm spending six nights at La Calcina, and I've been drooling my way through the restaurant recommendations here, and I have some questions. I'll be traveling solo, and Venice comes across as very much a couples town. Will I have trouble getting reservations as a solo diner? Are there places I should avoid? Will I be going back to the days when single women were shown to the table by the kitchen door? Or, if I show up without a reservation, will it actually be easier to get a table as a single?

I know I could eat cichetti at the bar, and I'm sure I'll do some of that, but after a hard day's sightseeing I'd like to sit down at a proper table.
thursdaysd is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 04:31 PM
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Venice is not a couples-only town. You should be able to get a table for one just as easily or not as you would at home--based on availability.

The only time I ever saw a solo diner having difficulties in Venice, it was all of her own making. We were at a restaurant where, to save space, many of the table are arranged directly next to one another, like one long table for perhaps eight people with one end of the table against the wall. There were also one or two tables for just two people along the opposite wall. Typically, two people dining together would take two seats opposite one another at the long table, and the seats would fill in as more diners arrived.

After a whie we noticed a woman standing and waiting by herself. The waitress kept returning to her and speaking to her in Italian, shrugging her shoulders, and going away. Eventually the woman was in tears. We discovered that she wanted a table by herself and she felt that she was being overlooked and abused in some way, which was not the case. All the tables for two were occupied. The waitress kept offering her a seat at one of the long tabels, but she kept declining the offer. I'm sure the Englih-speaking woman was also experiencing some difficulties understanidng the Italian-only waitress. Meanwhile, we found ourselves in a very interesting conversation with the people who had sat next to us at our communal table.
ellenem is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 06:03 PM
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I spent 4 nights in Venice in Sept 2005 and 3 more this past July, all alone, and never had a problem making a reservation for 1 person or showing up somewhere by myself. I was never refused a table because I was by myself. And certainly not given a table "by the kitchen door"!
SusanP is online now  
Oct 9th, 2007, 06:52 PM
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I've spent weeks at time in Venice....solo. Had no problems dining solo...I usually made reservations, but that's me.
I also had a few GTG with Fodorites...lunch and dinner...had a great time.
My sister and I will be in Venice in November if you want to meet for lunch or dinner!
[email protected]
Bailey is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 07:00 PM
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No problem at all. I spent 8 wonderful nights in Venice all alone and no problem dining by myself. Actually, I think the waiters paid more attention to me because I was alone.

Have a great time, I did!
cafegoddess is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 08:05 PM
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ellenem - I like the sound of the communal table!

bailey - thanks, I'll send you an email
thursdaysd is offline  
Oct 9th, 2007, 10:30 PM
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I had one great solo trip to Venice (and another time w/ a friend)... I don't recall any problems but then I wasn't into eating in high-end restaurants, just casual places. More for my own budget, than expecation of bad service or bad tables or whatever.

I stayed both times at La Calcina. Wonderful hotel btw!
suze is offline  
Oct 10th, 2007, 03:43 AM
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Hi T,

Your hotel will help you in making reservations.

ira is offline  
Oct 20th, 2007, 07:23 AM
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I will be leaving for Venice on business in about a week. I also will be traveling alone. Can anyone suggest a good place to meet locals or other visitors while I am there? I have no problem traveling by myself, I just think meeting new people is part of the whole experience. Thanks for your help!
jralsto1 is offline  
Oct 20th, 2007, 09:41 AM
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jralsto1, the bar at Harry's Bar is a good place to meet people, esp. if you are on an expense account.

Irish style pubs are a good place to meet other travelers. There is Devil's Forest near Campo San Bartolomeo and Inishark on Calle Mondo Nuovo in Castello. Also, the Fiddler's Elbow off the Strada Nova in Cannaregio. Locals sometimes go to these places too.

The Wine Bar La Cantina in Cannaregio has a great blend of travelers and locals, as does Cafe Blue in Dorsoduro.

For the OP - I have had a gazillion meals alone in Venice, and there are certain places I have always felt really comfortable by myself. One place is very close to your hotel - Taverna San Trovaso. I don't think you need to worry about reserving there in November. Other places good for dining alone: da Alberto and Casa Mia in Cannaregio (reserve at da Alberto), Antico Dolo and Enoteca Vivaldi in San Polo, and Casin dei Nobili in Dorsoduro. And La Zucca in Santa Croce (reserve for this one.) I wouldn't feel uncomfortable in other places, but all of these I go back to time after time, because they all feel very comfortable to me - and the food is good, too.

Have fun!
rialtogrl is offline  
Oct 20th, 2007, 06:38 PM
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My vote would be the Grand Canal restaurant in the Hotel Monaco overlooking the Grand Canal. It's a superb place (largely unknown for travelrs) and my experience is that they are friendly towards singles.
Rhardy5554 is offline  
Oct 21st, 2007, 11:40 PM
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Thanks for the wonderful restaurant leads! The knowledge base of the posters on this forum amazes me! I am traveling to Venice in early Nov. with my sister-in-law. We would also be glad to share a meal! Please feel free to e-mail at [email protected] . sandy
rowanu is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2007, 11:27 AM
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Taverna San Trovaso has the best Sgroppino - definitely check it out!
flygirl is offline  

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