As if to order, a gondolier rows past under the window. The fact that he is towing a group of Japanese tourists must be generously overlooked. This is not difficult because the panorama view from the second floor of the Palazzo Molin in San Marco is simply stunning. Furthermore the building, which dates from the 15th century and was once home to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, has recently undergone five years of loving restoration and now offers space for seventeen apartments of which roughly half have already been sold.  

According to the real estate portal “Idealista” anyone wishing to a call a property in Venice their own must be ready to pay an average of € 4,383 per square metre. This is the highest price in Italy and is only paralleled in Sardinia. Moreover, the average price per square metre for premium category real estate starts at around € 10,000 and on the Canale Grande rises to as much as € 40,000. But as Thomas Hopfgartner the CEO of the Living de Luxe real estate company, which is based in Vienna and Velden in Austria, explains: “In the case of such properties, the square metre price is not so important. The main concerns are what one sees when one looks out of the window and the historic surroundings.”      

The luxury estate agent is standing on the tiny terrace of the Palazzo, which leads to a huge salon with 340 square metres of floor space and a roughly 6 m high ceiling. Anyone crossing the room has to walk a good 21 m. Thomas Hopfgartner: “This property would be ideal for an art collector.” For a cool five million euros, not only is the salon available, but also two bedrooms, a dining room and three bathrooms. Higher up there is a penthouse costing € 3.2 million, which offers 240 square metres of living space with a dream view thrown in. St. Mark’s Square is only a five-minute-walk away, but as Thomas Hopfgartner says: “Naturally enough, we do not receive enquiries every week. However, people are constantly seeking something typically Venetian and terraces and balconies are much in demand.” 


Venice currently has a population of around 60,000 and 200,000 live in Mestre. The real estate market is lively and the showcases of the estate agents are full. By contrast, special objects like a palazzo only come onto the market every twelve to fifteen years and for example, the Palazzo Molin was sold by the city. On average, properties change hands for between one and two million euros, but there is no upper limit. At present, a palazzo with 4,000 square metres, which Thomas Hopfgartner describes as a museum, is up for sale at € 60 million.

Anyone wishing to keep their distance from the tourists will find what they are seeking on the Lido. Here the Villa Bianca, which was built in 1920, is available for € 14 million. It comes complete with a private boat landing, garden and roof terrace, not to mention seven bedrooms. The owner barely uses it, which is the reason for the sale, but Thomas Hopfgartner believes: “This will take time and possibly years.” He also has two private islands in the lagoon in his portfolio. Price: € 9 million.  

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