Venice seems so bright and sparkly on a summer's day but, as night falls, another Venice can be felt.
A Venice where the loud voices, laughter and excitement of the tourists is gone. Now it is the ghosts of Venice who dominate, the spirits of centuries past. Mist rolls slowly along the blackened canals, enveloping all in its embrace. A shiver runs down your spine, your blood turns to ice. Mostly benevolent, you can feel their presence, the presence of a thousand years of lives lived and lost in these streets.
Not all the ghosts are benevolent though. Some are sinister, terrifying. This is the story of the most frightening of all Venice's ghosts...
The malignant spirits of Ca’ Dario or Palazzo Dario are said to have had a hand in the strange deaths of 10 innocent souls.
You'll find Ca'Dario in the Dorsoduro district of Venice Italy, facing onto the Grand Canal, but, before we get on to the strange ability of this building to kill nearly all who own it, let’s look at the history of the place...
Built in 1487 Ca’ Dario is unmistakable. It just doesn’t seem to fit in with the buildings near it.
It is definitely a beautiful building, the chimneys in particular are distinctive and very few chimneys still exist in this style. The pale facade of marble and Istria stone is stunningly beautiful – as Venice palazzi go this is lovely. Look at it too long though and you start feeling a chill down your spine - nobody can say why but most people are effected like this.
The building was designed and owned by Giovanni Dario and stayed in the Dario family until the 19th century - the cursed nature of the building seems to have started right from the beginning...
The number of owners, or members of their families, who have died shortly after owning this building is shocking.
We are not talking about 1 or 2 deaths here but probably nearer to 10 at least.
The first to die was the daughter of Giovanni Dario who committed suicide; this was followed by the murder of their son Vincenzo. The sad and terrible history continues right up until recently.
• The famous tenor Mario Del Monaco seriously injured in a car accident in 1964.
• Count delle Lanze in the 70’s who was murdered.
• Count delle Lanze's Croatian murderer was in turn murdered in London.
• Christoper Lambert – the manager of The Who who committed suicide by supposedly falling down stairs.
• Nicoletta Ferrari died in a mysterious car accident in the 80’s.
• Raul Gardini committed suicide in 1993 under suspicious circumstances.
Currently for Sale
The building is currently owned by a large American multinational but I have heard that it is for sale. If you are interested and don’t believe in haunted castles and palaces why not make an offer? Perhaps you can pick up a Venice palace at a bargain price.
Want more haunted buildings in Italy? Visit the castle haunted by the man in the iron mask (read more in my Castle of Exilles guide).
Have you seen a ghost or discovered a great castle? Share your story or even better send us a photo!
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