Basilica of the Salute (Holy Mary of Health) : Michelin's recommendations
The Basilica of the Salute means health, the health hoped for by all Venetians when they raised this basilica in 1630 to ward off a plague epidemic. But it also represents the salvation of their souls, because you never know. Baldassare Longhena was placed at the head of the construction work to build this always venerated church, and especially so on the 21st of November, when Venetians commemorate the end of the epidemic. This imposing building crowned with an immense white dome topped by a statue of the Virgin, is even more impressive because of the gigantic staircase leading up to it and the multitude of statues that decorate the building's exterior. Dictated by the main cupola, the floor plan consists of a central area surrounded by six chapels. A polychrome marble floor leads to the center of the building, with five roses evocative of a rosary. The interior is solemn. The Mesoponditissa (an icon brought from Crete known as the Madonna of the Salvation) is the central piece, crowned with an allegorical group representing Venice freed from the Plague (by the Flemish artist Justin the Short), and the interior is strikingly cold. The Sacristy has several works of art: theatrical theme works Wedding of Cana by Tintoretto capture the attention of the visitors who should not miss the two works by Palma, the altarpieces by Luca Giordano and, on the ceiling, paintings by Titian that create a dramatic atmosphere.
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