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Water Taxi To Myself. Just stepped out of Venice’s Marco Polo Airport and am transferring by water taxi to the Gritti Palace Venice.

Along with a dozen or so other travel writers, I am in Venice, Italy, at the gorgeous The Gritti Palace. We’re here to visit the shipyard where Royal Princess is in the final stages of construction, but this evening is far from a shipyard visit, thanks to the fine folks at Princess Cruises. Tomorrow we’ll see a gorgeous ship. Tonight, we’ll enjoy a gorgeous hotel.

On the Grand Canal, one of the world’s finest hotels, the Gritti Palace Venice. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

Saying good-bye to the water taxi on Venice’s Grand Canal as the bellboy handles my one bag. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

Hemingway was here. Well, maybe not here, but at the Gritti Palace. So did Churchill, De Gaulle, Bacall, Bogart, Chaplin, Garbo, Stravinsky, Somerset Maugham, Graham Greene, Elizabeth Taylor, Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, Orson Welles, Frank Lloyd Wright, Springsteen, Dylan, Pacino, Pavarotti, De Niro, Jagger, Winslet, Cruise, Kidman, Woody Allen and the Avid Cruiser. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

The Gritti Palace now has just 82 rooms, including 21 suites, down from 91. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

Lorenzo Rubelli provided fabrics for patterns from its archives for new upholstery, curtains and the silk wall coverings that line the refurbished guest rooms. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

The Gritti Palace reopened in March after an multi-million euro renovation With floor-to-ceiling Italian marble, the bathrooms were extensively refitted. Yep, that’s Acqua di Parma, the famed Italian toiletry. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

During the restoration, chandeliers were broken down into their thousands of constituent pieces and sent to the Venetian artisans Galliano Ferro on the island of Murano. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

A dozen or so journalists are here, courtesy of Princess Cruises, to visit the shipyard where Royal Princess is in the final stages of construction. We’re off to a great start. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

Good Night. Murano glass lamps in the hallways leading to guest rooms. © 2013 Ralph Grizzle

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The post In Photos: The Gritti Palace In Venice, Italy appeared first on Cruise Reviews, Ship Reviews by The Avid Cruiser.