Palazzo Flangini is, practically, the first truly monumental building that you meet on the Grand Canal, in Venice, when you are traveling with the vaporetto from the railway station, heading to the Rialto Bridge.
Near the Scuola dei Morti, the Flangini Palace consists of two-thirds of an unfinished building, probably designed by Giuseppe Sardi in the second half of the 17th century.
It is said that the palace remained unfinished because one of the two brothers who inherited it, in spite of the other, had one of the wings destroyed, cutting the palace in half. The reality, much simpler and more prosaic, is that the old owner lacked the funds and was unable to buy the nearby area necessary for the completion of the building.
The building have been built between the years 1664 and 1682 and is attributed to the architect Giuseppe Sardi by the art historian of the 18th century Tommaso Temanza, but some think it could be the project of Baldassarre Longhena.
Currently, the building is divided into several private properties. Following an important restoration, the entrance hall and the portego of the building have been taken over by the Valorizzazioni Culturali society, with the aim of returning the deserved historical-cultural recognition through events and art exhibitions.
The restoration has brought back to life the splendid baroque decorations of the façade and the interior, the stuccos and precious painted doors of the eighteenth century and, finally, all the nineteenth-century wall decorations, including the cycles of paintings that make up the gallery of the central hall.
The palace has a particularly rich facade, with a majestic water portal (embellished by two splendid male figures resting on the arch), two floors with quadruple and single-lancet windows, supported by sturdy trunks of ionic and composite semicolumns, joined by continuous balconies and decorated with head sculptures.
The interior is very well preserved, with baroque stuccoes and coeval canvases, demonstrating a single stylistic direction for both the construction of the building and its decoration.
HOW TO GET THERE
The palace can be admired from the other bank of Grand Canal, near the Riva de Biasio waterbus station. The closest station is, however, Guglie, about 300 meters from the palace, on the route of waterbuses 4.1, 4.2, 5.1 and 5.2.