The Cà d'Oro Palace

Monuments - Cà d'Oro Area

This beautiful Gothic palace along the Grand Canal of Venice was originally covered in gold leafs, vermilion and ultramarine decorations. The palace reveals Moorish influence in its roof and sinuous pointed arches.

The only problem with the use of this building as an art museum is that the Cà d'Oro is so opulent that its architecture and decor compete with the works. It was built in the early 1400s, and its name translates as "House of Gold," although the gilding that once covered its facade eroded away long ago, leaving softly textured pink and white stone carved into lacy Gothic patterns. Historians compare its majesty to that of the Ducal Palace.

The building was meticulously restored in the early 20th century by philanthropist Baron Franchetti, who attached it to a smaller nearby palazzo (Cà Duodo), today part of the Cà d'Oro complex. The interconnected buildings contain the baron's valuable private collection of paintings, sculpture, and furniture, all donated to the Italian government during World War I.