May 11, 2018
Set amid lush, private gardens on Giudecca Island, Hotel Cipriani was created by Giuseppe Cipriani, owner of the legendary Harry’s Bar, and is a firm favourite among international celebrities. George Clooney is a regular, and has even created two cocktails with Walter Bolzonella, the bartender at the helm of Cipriani’s Gabbiano Bar. Gabbiano Bar is where the elite come to unwind. Outside, the covered terrace overlooks the hotel’s large pool. Inside, the lounge oozes the same sophisticated class as the rest of the hotel, and guests are treated to live music from a baby grand piano as they sip an aperitif or after-dinner nightcap. There’s an impressive selection of cocktails and top-shelf spirits, as well as a regionally-led wine menu. Cocktails on offer include nine variations of the Martini and non-alcoholic options for the more abstemious. And of course those signature Clooney creations. The heart-throb created his first concoction, the Buona Notte, when he presented his film Good Night, and Good Luck at the Venice Film Festival in 2005. The drink features lime, ginger, cane sugar, angostura bitters, vodka and cranberry over crushed iced and has inevitably become a favourite at Gabbiano. In 2011 Bolzonella asked Clooney to help name a new recipe with elderflower and passionfruit and La Nina’s Passion was born. Endearingly, it’s named for Clooney’s mother.