Palazzo del Cinema
Speaking of the Palazzo del Cinema, Federico Fellini apparently said that for a director to walk through its doors was like "passing a final exam".
And, indeed, the Venice Film Festival is an important and significant, magical and glamorous event in which the Lido relives the splendour of its golden years, with the Palazzo del Cinema at its heart.
The first edition of 1932 was held on the terrace of the Hotel Excelsior, but the success of the Festival made it necessary to build a separate venue. Between 1936 and 1937 this palazzo came to life, an emblem of the modernism of the time, designed by engineer Luigi Quaranta. The plan for the area was to build three rationalist-style buildings symmetrically: the Casino in the center with the Palazzo del Cinema on the left and another building on the right – never built due to the arrival of the Second World War – which was to become the home of an ice skating rink.
The Palazzo del Cinema in its original version was officially opened for the fifth edition of the Festival, in August 1937. At the time, it had a monumental tripartite façade with vertical pilasters and rounded corners, as the rationalist style of the time dictated. Inside, there was only a lobby and the current Great Hall, but the building was extended in 1952, with the construction of an open arena and an avant-corps, which covered the façade with the foyer and the curved steps that have now become emblematic of the Film Festival.
The structure underwent further interventions over the years, especially due to the need to expand it given the growing success of the Festival and the increase in spectators. A competition was held in 1989, but the Municipality abandoned the chosen project because it was considered too expensive.
In 2008 a further project began to build a new Palazzo del Cinema, but it was never completed. Lastly, the area of the Palazzo and the halls was renovated in the 2010s, with the last intervention started in 2016
Today the Palazzo del Cinema is also available to organize and host conferences and corporate events, making available not only the Great Hall (which today has 1032 seats) and the Darsena Hall next to the Palazzo (1409 seats), but also the Zorzi and Pasinetti Halls, which can accommodate 48 and 119 guests respectively.
To organise an event at the Palazzo del Cinema:
Communication, Events & MICE Department
Isola Nova del Tronchetto, 21 – 30135 Venice
+39 041 2722626