Hidden treasures

Death in Venice in Hotel Des Bains at the Lido

Film Locations

Death in Venice in Hotel Des Bains at the Lido

The Lido Island in the Venice lagoon became famous in the early twentieth century for its beaches and luxury hotels.

Certainly one of the most famous ones is Hotel Des Bains, inaugurated in 1900. it soon became the favorite place for European and non European aristocracy, upper middle class.

The great German writer Thomas Mann often stayed at the hotel. He also chose it as the setting for his famous Death in Venice (1912), a novel about an old artist falling in love with a young Polish boy, who, in order to stay close to him, remains in Venice, where he dies of cholera.

The story was turned into a movie in 1971 by the world famous Luchino Visconti, who filmed at the hotel. The film shows the marvelous art-deco lounges (not the original ones, since the hotel was damaged by a fire when being closed during the First World War) and the beach with its white curtains, where the fatal meeting between composer Gustav von Haschenbach (inspired by Gustav Mahler and played by Dirk Bogarde) and the handsome, fourteen-year old Tadzio took place (Visconti spent a lot of time in Scandinavia looking for the perfect actor, finally choosing Swedish Björn Andrésen).

Once the heart of the Hollywood society during the Venice Film Festival, today Hotel Des Bains has turned into a luxury housing estate.

Are you fascinated by movie locations? With our Cinetour you will discover the places and locations in Venice which were the location for films of yesteryear and contemporary ones… Listening to stories, anecdotes and fiction told by our expert tour guide!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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