BIENNALE: BENEATH THE SURFACE
A deeper exploration of Venice’s historic art festival in 2024
AN INSIDER'S PERSPECTIVE: THE VENICE BIENNALE
A masterclass in contemporary art awaits on a journey which celebrates the 60th edition of the prestigious Art Biennale.
Follow the trail of art around the Floating City, led by private guides in a curated experience.
Under the auspices of Brazilian curator Adriano Pedrosa, the theme of this year’s multidisciplinary event is Foreigners Everywhere, encompassing the movement and existence of people across countries, nations, territories and borders. With insight from curators and specialist art experts, privileged access to galleries, exhibits and even an artist’s studio, explore the Biennale in style, as a true insider.
Designed in collaboration with Mandarin Oriental, Milan, it is here the journey begins, in a city renowned for art and fashion.
DAY 1 - ARRIVE AT MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MILAN
This contemporary 5-star hotel is just a short walk from some of the global fashion capital’s most popular attractions, including historic opera house La Scala. The spa boasts the largest indoor swimming pool in the city centre.
Spend the afternoon discovering Milan’s most renowned modern art galleries, where The Luminaire can arrange private appointments to personalise the experience.
Before journeying to Venice the following morning, enjoy the evening at leisure. Dine at one of the lively neighbourhood eateries nearby or sample an inspiring Biennale-themed tasting menu by chef Antonio Guida at Seta (2 Michelin stars), set in the courtyard of Mandarin Oriental, Milan.
DAY 2 - IN THE WAKE OF THE GREATS
After arriving in Venice in the morning via first-class, high-speed train from Milan, transfer by private water taxi to legendary Venetian hotel, The Gritti Palace.
Come afternoon, arrive at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection by vaporetto. A curator or art expert waits at the same water entrance where countless great artists have been welcomed over the years, to lead a personalised exploration of the gallery. Following an insight into the eponymous collector credited with introducing modern art to Venice, explore the illuminating exhibition Jean Cocteau: The Juggler’s Revenge. The exhibition’s title alludes to the influential artist’s versatility, which came under fire in his lifetime from his contemporaries.
Later, visit the captivating island of San Giorgio, where the art specialist will accompany you around an exhibition such as Berlinde de Bruyckere – City of Refuge III, one of 30 projects selected as a Collateral Event by Biennale curator Adriano Pedrosa. Later, stroll through the island’s monastery gardens and, if you have a head for heights, climb the soaring bell tower to catch views spanning the skyline, from St Mark’s Basilica to the Palazzo Ducale and the Campanile.
The Luminaire can make recommendations and reservations for dinner, from corner cicchetti bars to Venetian palazzos.
DAY 3 - FROM ARTIST’S STUDIO TO WORLD STAGE
Following a relaxed breakfast canal-side, a water taxi and private guide wait just a stone’s throw from the door of The Gritti Palace. Arrive at the tree-lined Giardini della Biennale, site of the first Biennale Arte, a triumph in 1895. Explore thought-provoking highlights of the 29 national pavilions, showcasing an array of contemporary art installations created by some of the world’s most high-profile artists in response to this year’s theme of The Foreigner. Debrief over lunch at leisure in San Marco. The Luminaire can make suggestions and reservations.
For a deeper look at the creative process, spend the afternoon visiting the studio of a Venice-based artist, followed by a private viewing and aperitivo at one of the city’s leading art galleries.
After dark, enjoy dinner at leisure. The Luminaire can make a reservation at a sumptuous restaurant set within a 16th-century palazzo.
DAY 4 - A HISTORY OF COLOUR
In what will be an unforgettable morning, experience a rare visit to the Anish Kapoor Foundation at the Baroque-style Palazzo Manfrin in the sestiere (quarter) of Cannaregio. There, joined by a renowned artist and colouring specialist, understand the rich history of paint colours and pigments and the crucial role Venice played in their development throughout history.
That afternoon, continue exploring the nuanced palette of the 60th edition together with a private guide, taking in the highlights of the Biennale exhibition at the Arsenale, Venice’s historic shipyard site.
Spend the rest of the evening at leisure. During the warmer months, The Luminaire can arrange a private sailing experience on the Venetian Lagoon, to take in the colours of the Floating City at sunset, with an aperitivo on board.
DAY 5 - ART PAST AND PRESENT AT THE PALAZZO
Joined by a contemporary art specialist, spend the morning at a beautifully restored titan of culture, the Berggruen Foundation. Be among the first to see the hotly-anticipated Berggruen Arts & Culture initiative, opening in 2024 to coincide with the Biennale, at the 18th-century aristocratic residence Palazzo Diedo. Supporting emerging artists of today, the initiative’s work strengthens the connection between contemporary art and the past, and aims to make art accessible to a wider audience.
Travel by water taxi to Venezia Santa Lucia train station for the first-class return journey to Milan.
MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MILAN
This journey is available exclusively with a stay at Mandarin Oriental, Milan.
Housed in four elegant 18th century buildings, offering a charming mix of Milanese style and design in the fashionable heart of the city, this 5-star hotel is just a few steps from the Duomo.
FROM £7,215 PER PERSON
For five days, based on two guests sharing.
1 night’s accommodation at Mandarin Oriental, Milan, including breakfast
3 nights’ accommodation at The Gritti Palace, Venice, including breakfast
Two half-day contemporary art explorations in Venice guided by an expert
Private artist studio visit in Venice
Private art gallery visit in Venice, including cocktails
Guided visits to the Biennale’s Gardini and Arsenale sites
First-class high-speed return train travel between Milan and Venice
Gallery entrance as described
WHEN TO TRAVEL
Biennale Arte 2024 in Venice runs from 17 April to 24 November 2024.
Experiences are subject to availability.
Flights to/from Milan or Venice.
Excursions, meals and drinks other than those mentioned.
ENHANCE THE EXPERIENCE
Rarely-granted and private access to the Gallerie dell’Acccademia’s Misericordia art restoration studios, which are not normally open to the public.
Privatise your visit to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and stay for dinner.
Attend a private opening at the National Pavilion (depending on availability) at the Giardini della Biennale.
Enjoy a private sunset Venetian Lagoon sailing experience.
Dine in style in a private palazzo.
For those celebrating a special occasion, a private Venetian palazzo offers a captivating alternative to a hotel stay.
A PIONEERING PARTNERSHIP
The Luminaire designs and operates luxury travel experiences for Mandarin Oriental guests and Fans that are rooted in culture and curiosity, with additional products launching each month in close collaboration with Mandarin Oriental hotels around the world.
From a private masterclass with one of the world’s finest watchmaking ateliers in Switzerland, to an immersive trip to the private site where Van Gogh painted his last canvas just outside Paris, each experience has been designed by experts in their field – art historians, conservationists, sommeliers. Discover exciting new ways to explore each Mandarin Oriental destination and enjoy the signature service for which each hotel is renowned.
OTHER JOURNEYS IN ITALY
Available exclusively for guests of Mandarin Oriental, Milan, where each journey begins.