The Veneto, Dreamy and Dramatic

| December 28, 2013


Home to shimmering, fantastical Venice and to Romeo and Juliet’s Verona, it’s no surprise that the Veneto is one of Italy’s most romantic regions. The architecture is dreamily beautiful, the countryside is soft and pretty, and while the south is dominated by mystical lagoons and sinuous rivers, the north offers the dramatic golden needles of the high Dolomites. Positioned where Italy meets Austria, the Veneto has long formed a cultural crossroads of Teutonic and Latinate, and also of East and West thanks to Venice’s grand trading history. It’s a prosperous and very trade-savvy region, open-minded and outward-looking. As an incomer, you’ll always meet a warm welcome.

The Veneto’s landscapes could hardly be more diverse. Between the pancake-flat Po Valley and the sharp tips of the Dolomites, you’ll find wide fields of maize, tidy orchards, and vineyards that arc across dome-shaped hills. Spaced at regular intervals across these lovely landscapes are the Veneto’s gem-like little cities: breathtaking Venice, romantic Verona, artistic Padua, Palladian Vicenza. The quality of life in these affluent places is sky-high, and the architecture is a delight. The Veneto is also much blessed with waterways. Sunlight glitters off the inland sea of Lake Garda, the Brenta River winds past a showcase of Palladian villas, and the intricate coastline loops and splinters from golden beach to warm lagoon to reedy river delta.

Buyers in the Veneto tend to choose rural houses in the hills, apartments in the little cities, or ski homes in the mountains. The region offers some very good-value country properties in attractive areas, and you might pay as little as €120,000 for a fully restored farmhouse in the hills. Investigate the Berici hills south of Vicenza, the vineyard-striped Lessini Hills northwest of Verona, and the wonderful rounded Euganean Hills south of Padua.

Well-situated apartments in one of the Veneto’s small cities tend to start at about €180,000, and rental prospects are good especially in popular Verona. Regional capital Venice is in a different league, of course, being one of the most expensive places for property in all of Italy but yielding absolutely excellent holiday rental returns for about ten months a year. Two-bedroom apartments in Venice start at about €300,000, and climb upward into the millions. Holiday rental rates can be anything from €600 to €6,000 per week, depending on the property.

Buyers hoping to cover their costs with holiday rentals should also consider Lake Garda, of course, the eastern half of which is in the Veneto and the western half in Lombardy. Properties tend to be cheapest along the flatter southern shores and more expensive along the steeper northern shores. All areas are popular with holiday rental clientele, although rental rates can be higher in the north. Then there are the Veneto’s wonderful ski areas to consider. The super-chic resort Cortina d’Ampezzo has prices on a par with central Venice, but other resorts are much more affordable. Note that prices drop considerably the further from a resort’s centre you go, and lovers of tranquil mountain retreats could well consider a rural home somewhere up here.

With so much to choose from in the Veneto, you’d better start your property search on immediately!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *