Venice, Italy Villa Franceschi, at only 10 Km from Venice, overlooks the banks of the Brenta, the Riviera of the noble families of Venice. As long ago as the 15th century the Venetians considered the waters of the Brenta to be a natural extension of the Canal Grande. They built a string of villas along its banks with both business and pleasure in mind. These summer retreats had two fa?ades, the finest one overlooking the waterway, while the one at the rear gave on to the gardens and cottages where everyday activities went on. The windows and terraces of Villa Franceschi overlook an extensive park containing some outstandingly beautiful corners embellished by antique statues. In the rooms of the cottages one can enjoy the silence of nature, broken only by birdsong from the boughs of the centuries-old trees. The park and gardens are a tranquil paradise. There are many ways to let guests know they are welcome, but in this regard the details are eloquent: fireplaces, sumptuous fabrics, pictures, period furniture, classical d?cor, all conspire to make your stay a memorable one.