Our Anniversary to Italy: Part 18 – Hilton Molino Stucky, Venice

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Emily:  Daraius and I went to Europe in September to celebrate our 2nd anniversary for ~2 weeks.  It was my first time in Italy so I was very excited!  In Italy, we visited Varenna on Lake Como, Milan, Venice, and Rome.

Since we were in Europe, we visited a friend in Strasbourg, France and also spent a night in Zurich.  We started our trip with a one day layover in Chicago to see friends!

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily at the Rooftop Pool at the Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Our Anniversary To Italy – Trip Report Index:

How You Can do it Too!

It costs 50,000 Hilton points for 1 night (70,000 points in May, June, July & September) at the Hilton Molino Stucky in Venice.  The regular price for a room varies from ~$300 to ~$500, so this is a great use of Hilton points!

You get 2 free weekend nights (weekend is defined as Friday, Saturday, or Sunday nights) with the Citi Hilton Reserve card.

You also get free Hilton Gold status with the Citi Hilton Reserve card.  Hilton Gold status will get you free internet and free breakfast.  It costs 20 euro or ~$27 for 1 day of internet in your room (internet is free in the lobby) and 15 euro (~$21) per person for breakfast at the Hilton Molino Stucky.

So we didn’t have to pay ~$68 a day for the convienence of free internet and breakfast with the free Hilton Gold status from the Citi Hilton Reserve!

A less obvious way to get Hilton points is to get the 50,000 mile Virgin Atlantic card and to then transfer 50,000 Virgin Atlantic miles to 100,000 Hilton points for free.  That way, you get 100,000 Hilton points which you can use for any 2 nights at the Hilton Molino Stucky.

See this post on all the ways to earn Hilton points.

Hilton Molino Stucky, Venice

1.   Getting To Venice

We took a 2.5 hour train ride from Milan to Venice.  We bought the cheaper 2nd class tickets at the automatic ticket machine in Milan.  The tickets were 37.5 euros (~$55) for each 1-way ticket from Milan to Venice.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

You can Purchase Train Tickets From the Automatic Machine at the Station

The machines were easy to use, and we had our tickets in just a few minutes.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

User Friendly Ticket Machines at the Station

We selected our destination, and tried to pay with a credit card.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

75 Euro for 2 1-Way Tickets From Milan to Venice!

However we used our British Airways card which has a chip, but the machine wanted to know our PIN as well.

So we just used an American Express card which didn’t require a PIN number.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Keypad for Entering Our PIN Code

Soon we were in Venice and outside the train station were the Venetian canals I had read – and dreamed – about since I was a child!

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Venetian Canals Greeted Us as We Exited the Station

2.   Venice Water Taxi to the Hilton

We took a water taxi from the Santa Lucia train station directly to our hotel, the Hilton Molino Stucky Venice.  Daraius wanted the James Bond experience!

This cost 60 euro (~$82) for both of us and it is easy to find a water taxi outside the station.

This was cheaper than the 136 euro (~$186) if you arrange for a private transfer through the hotel.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily on the Water Taxi to the Hotel

We could have taken the cheaper water bus, but it would take 45 minutes to 1 hour (instead of 15 minutes in a water taxi), so we decided to pay more and save time.  We only had 2 days in Venice and were anxious to do some sightseeing!

That said, we did take the water bus around Venice at night and it was a very nice experience.

The hotel publishes a detailed document with all of the transport options including pricing and availability.

The public bus takes about 45 minutes and costs 7 euro (~$10) per person, and includes one piece of luggage.  Additional luggage costs 7 euro each.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Public Water Bus Costs 7 Euro but Takes Much Longer

If you do take the water bus, you have to get off at the “Palanca” stop.  There is a short 5 minutes walk including climbing up a few stairs.  This isn’t really a big deal if you don’t have a lot of luggage!

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Stairs You Have to Use for the Public Water Bus

The water taxi costs around 60 euro and takes about 15 minutes.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily Happy to Get Started Seeing Venice

Daraius liked the James Bond feel of the taxi, but was disappointed at how slow the boat went.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Feeling Like Secret Agent 007 in the Water Taxi

3.   Hilton Molino Stucky Hotel

We booked two nights at the Hilton Molino Stucky in Venice, and used 50,000 points for one night and 1 free weekend night certificate from the Citi Hilton Reserve card.  

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

View of The Hilton Molino Stucky Venice From Our Water Taxi

Again, here are all the ways to get Hilton points.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily Outside the Hilton Molino Stucky Venice

The Hilton Molino Stucky isn’t on the main island of Venice, but on a more residential island called Giudecca.  We liked being away from the crowds and it was great to be able to explore the smaller and less crowded Giudecca island.

We also got a free upgrade to a Tower Suite because we are Diamond members (from spending on the Hilton Reserve card) and because it was our anniversary.

Regular rooms sell for ~400 euro (~$547) and our Tower Suite sells for a staggering $3,466!

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily in the Lobby of the Hilton Milano Stucky Venice

The hotel room was very spacious.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily in Our Tower Suite

There was a king bed with two nightstands.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Our Luxurious Bedroom

Along one wall were two windows through which…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Large Windows

…we had a wonderful view of the main island.  We could see St. Mark’s Clock Tower from our room.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Amazing View from Our Bedroom

The bedroom also had a desk…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Cozy Workspace in the Tower Suite

and a TV, table, and chair.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Flat Screen TV and a Sitting Area in Our Bedroom

The bathroom wasn’t that spacious.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily in the Bathroom

It had double sinks…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

There Were Double Sinks in the Bathroom

but a small walk-in shower…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

There was a Separate Tiled Walk-in Shower

and a bathtub.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

A Large Sunken Bathtub

Across from the bathroom was a small closet.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

A Small Closet Across From the Bathroom

In addition to the bedroom and bathroom there was another wing that had a large living room and dining room.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily in the Tower Suite Living Room

It had a formal dining table and chairs…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Dining Room Could Seat Six

and a full living room…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Living Room was Large and Spacious

with the same spectacular view.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Living Room had a Great View of Venice

The couch was not a sleeper sofa, but there was room for a temporary bed in the room.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

There’s Room for a Roll Away in the Living Room

There was also a guest bathroom for visitors or additional friends or family to use.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

There’s a Half Bath off the Living Room

The hotel also has a beautiful rooftop swimming pool…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Rooftop Pool Overlooks the City

with plenty of lounge chairs…

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Comfortable Lounge Chairs at the Rooftop Pool

and a gorgeous view!

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

Emily Loving the View From the Rooftop Pool

The Arsenale Tower is lit up at night, but the pool is closed.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Glow of the Arsenale Tower Against the Night Sky

The views at night were very romantic.

Hilton Stucky Hotel Venice

The Lights of Venice from Hotel Monlino Stucky

The downside of the hotel is that you have to take a boat to get to the main island of Venice.

The Hilton has a free shuttle service that runs throughout the day.  But it does take time and we were waiting for 45 minutes once because the shuttle never showed up on time!

Bottom Line

Daraius and I had a wonderful time in Venice.

Although getting to The Hotel Molino Stucky requires a boat ride, it was worth it for us because we didn’t pay for the room, internet or breakfast!

We liked escaping from the crowds of Venice to the more residential island of Giudecca.

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43 Responses to Our Anniversary to Italy: Part 18 – Hilton Molino Stucky, Venice

  1. that is an amazing view from your bedroom.
    any idea who that yacht belongs to?

  2. I really appreciate the time and effort you guys put into this blog. I only started getting into travel deals last year and already, I’ve saved a ton and earned a companion pass thanks to you two.

  3. Slow Roller, that is the Phoenix 2, owned by Jan Kulczyk. It has a great gaudy chrome eagle bolted to the prow. Looks like they got lucky and missed the cruise ships which often stack up in part of that view just left of the Phoenix.

    We were in Venice right after D&E. I love Venice, so I stay a week and at a very different location. For 1,400 euro/week we would stay here:
    http://www.trulyveniceapartments.com/jsptruly/gallery.jsp?id=15&imagegal=1750

    Now that is living large in Venice!

  4. We really liked the Stucky (we stayed 3 nights last June); only complaint was the pool was freezing

  5. Love the Molino Stucky. When we stayed there in August, the pool was still very cool but very refreshing after sightseeing in the hot sun. We also enjoyed being on a quiet island to escape some of the summertime crowds. But I love Venice in the hot weather! It is magical.

  6. Did they change the breakfast? When I was there three years ago it was 50 euro a person, but still free for gold/diamond (And was fantastic)

  7. Thanks for the great review and pics! It brings back wonderful memories from our stay a few years ago. We stayed 5 nights and were upgraded to a suite the last 2 nights. I believe now that from May to September it’s 70k points. We got a superb, huge breakfast buffet with made to order eggs and coffees. As gold, we also got lounge access, with snacks, drinks, etc. You could also eat breakfast there, but it was much nicer in the restaurant. It was one of my best stays as gold!

  8. We also stayed at the Molino Stucky. It wasn’t our favorite Italian hotel, but it was a lovely find, especially at 50K points. Everyone told us that we wouldn’t love Venice or its crowds. We loved it! I think the Hilton is a wonderful choice for escaping the heat (and stench) of Venice during the busy summer months. We went in November, however, and I wish that we had stayed in the heart of the city. I also wish we had taken the Water Taxi. We arrive at night and it took forever to catch a boat. Ugh!

  9. Daraius, great review! It’s very useful for me since I’ll be staying at this hotel next month. You mentioned that you used your AMEX card at the train station’s POS terminal since it didn’t require a PIN. Does your AMEX have a chip or just a magnetic stripe? That’s one thing that I find frustrating when traveling in Europe is that every POS terminal requires chip+pin cards, which are not yet available in the US. My business cards from BOA just got upgraded to chip+pin but when I requested one from my personal account, they told me that they are not yet available for consumers. I have several AMEX cards (SPG, HHonors, etc) but neither one of them has a chip, so I was wondering if you have found one that works in Europe and bypasses the chip+pin requirement. Thanks.

  10. Great post and thanks for sharing. My wife and I loved Venice and stayed at a Rick Steve’s recommended hotel near St Marks Square. It was great being on the “main” island of Venice and being able to walk quickly to many sites. Venice is very romantic and I highly recommend it.

  11. @ Slow Roller- I wish it was mine! :)

    @ Jen- Thanks! There is a lot to learn so let us know if we can help answer any other questions.

    @ Brian (J)- Interesting! Thanks for the link! Looks like a great flat.

    @ Robert P- It was a little chilly in Venice, so I didn’t go swimming at all. Too bad the pool isn’t heated more.

    @ Denise L- Venice was great! I loved how unique it was with all of the canals and beautiful architecture. And glad you got to try out the pool!

    @ Nic- I’m not sure, but 50 euro for breakfast is really expensive!

    @ Lynn- Glad you enjoyed the report! Sounds like you had a great time. Hope you can return one day soon!

    @ Heather @ pass the dressing- Next time we go to Venice, I’d like to try being in the heart of the city for a comparison. Having to cross the water added time and effort, but the Hilton was still a nice, relaxing hotel to return to. And thanks for the tips on traveling at night in the water taxi!

    @ rilys- Thanks, and glad you enjoy the report! I will let Daraius answer your question since he can answer it better.

    @ Scott- Thank you! Rick Steve’s has some great recommendations for hotels. Being on the main island will be convenient, too.

  12. Thanks for another in-depth report. I read many travel blogs, and always enjoy yours the most. Not only do you seem to be delighted by your travels, but you’re also clear and concise with great travel tips. My husband and I will be visiting Molino Stucky in May and will follow in your footsteps. Thanks for the tips about using the AmEx card and taking the water taxi! I hope we get free breakfast as Gold Members. We’re flying Business Class and staying on points. We just stayed at the Park Hyatt Paris Vendome for two nights for free, where we were upgraded, and received a welcome gift of macaroons and chocolates. My friends don’t understand my passion for collecting frequent flyer points. They like the concept but don’t want to put in the time and effort. Thank you for embracing the cause and leading the way!

  13. @rilys – Our AMEX had only a magnetic strip. Most American Express cards also charge a foreign transaction fee, so you will end up paying a little extra for using an American Express card. The Platinum and Bluebird card don’t have foreign transaction fees. In general, some machines do accept the US Chip and Signature cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or British Airways cards, but not all machines do.

    @Susan – Thanks for reading! Venice is very magical at night, and we loved walking around at night. Have a wonderful trip and thanks for reading! You should get the free breakfast and internet as Hilton Gold members.

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