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Murano Glass in Venice Italy

Glass from Murano is very special, very expensive but exquisitely beautiful. Once you see the real thing, you will have no trouble recognizing the cheap imitations.

It is so easy to get ripped off in the shops around St Marks Square, therefore this Murano glass buying guide is essential reading for those who would like to buy the genuine article at a decent price.

Exploring Murano

Murano is a fascinating place and the best way to really enjoy it is to take a tour. There are two main ones on offer. The first one (click here to view) is the cheaper option and very interesting. Nothing like the other one though.

The "other one" is this private tour of Murano which is an awesome experience.

Most Popular Tours

Now for a bit of history. If you know all of this, then just click to skip down to the bottom for our guide on where to shop.

The History of Murano Glass in Venice

Murano is a suburb of Venice dating back to the Middle Ages. The glass making industry attracted the finest glass craftsmen from the East. Of particular note were the Syrian craftsmen.

The Murano story begins in 1292 when the glass making industry was moved from Venice to Murano for safety reasons – basically the kilns kept starting fires in Venice. Venice in that period was built of wood and fire was not exactly welcome.

Murano then developed into a rich village where many of the Venetian aristocrats build magnificent palaces.

True glass from Murano is made exclusively from silica extracted from the Cogòli del Tesìn basin. It is world renowned as the purest and most crystal clear glass to be found anywhere on earth. Exquisitely made murrine are one of the most beautiful examples of the art of the Murano glass makers.

Murrine are still made by hand, in the same way they were made in centuries past. The shear quality and work involved justifies completely the high price one has to pay for what is, in all respects, a work of art.

Glass in Murano

Where to Buy Murano Glass in Venice or Online

In Venice, there are two places I can highly recommend. These are as follows:

Tommasi Glass

Tommasi has been making glass for generations. quality is superb and prices are reasonable (as Murano prices go). The only product of theirs that I have heard people having issues with are their rings, where the glass falls out from the prongs.

The factory is right in the heart of the Murano district. Contact details are:

Address: Tommasi & Figli, Murano - Museo, Rivalonga Conterie - 30141 Venice Italy

Phone: 39-041-736051 e-mail:

Atelier Glass

For all things Murano, Atelier is well worth visiting. I find their chandeliers and mirrors in particular to be gorgeous. The address is:

Address: Atelier Glass snc, Cannaregio 234 Lista di Spagna, Venice, Italy, tel-fax +39-041-716 727

Murano Glass by Juliet Earth

Murano FAQ

Why is Murano glass so expensive?

Murano glass is considered a luxury item due to its exceptional quality, craftsmanship, and artistic value. Each piece is handmade by skilled artisans, and the process of creating Murano glass products requires time, skill, and precision.

How can you tell if Murano glass is authentic?

Authentic Murano glass products are typically marked with a special sticker or stamp that indicates their origin. Additionally, authentic Murano glass is often signed or etched by the artist who created it. Lastly, if you see slight imperfections, color variations or bubbles in the glass, then it is likely real; factory-made glass does not have those.

It is also important to purchase Murano glass from reputable sources to ensure its authenticity.

What are some famous Murano glass techniques?

Some famous Murano glass techniques include millefiori, filigree, and latticino. Millefiori, which means "a thousand flowers" in Italian, involves creating intricate patterns using thin slices of colored glass. Filigree involves twisting and layering glass rods to create intricate designs, while latticino involves incorporating thin, twisted threads of colored glass into the glassware.

What else is there to do in Murano besides visiting glass factories?

In addition to visiting glass factories, you can explore Murano's charming streets and squares, visit historic churches such as the Church of Santa Maria and the Church of San Donato, and enjoy delicious Venetian cuisine at local restaurants and cafes.

Can I take a glassmaking class in Murano?

Yes, many glass factories in Murano offer glassmaking classes where you can learn basic glassmaking techniques and create your own glass artwork under the guidance of experienced artisans. 

How much time should I spend in Murano?

You can explore the main attractions of Murano in a half-day trip from Venice, but if you're interested in learning more about glassmaking or taking a glassmaking class, you may want to spend a full day or more on the island.

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