VENICE'S HAUNTED PALAZZO IS SOLD: GRISLY TALES HOLD NO FEAR FOR AMERICAN BUYER

National Post (f/k/a The Financial Post) (Canada)
Calgary & Vancouver Edition
November 16, 2006 Thursday

ROME - Venice's most famous haunted house, the Ca Dario on the Grand
Canal, has been sold to an unnamed American entrepreneur, despite
its grisly past.

The four-storey palazzo, elegantly clad in pink marble, has lain
vacant for the past decade because Venetians are so scared of its
history. Almost all of its inhabitants in the five centuries since
it was built have come to an untimely end.

Its last owner, Raul Gardini, a business tycoon, shot himself shortly
after buying the house because he feared arrest for allegedly paying
out more than (ps)50-million ($107-million) in bribes to politicians.

Before him, in the 1970s, Giordano delle Lanze was bludgeoned to
death with a statue by his gay lover, an 18-year-old Croatian sailor.

Christopher Lambert, an Englishman who bought the house in the '80s,
fell down the stairs of his London house shortly after signing the
deeds, in an apparent suicide.

Local folklore claims the curse on the house comes from the Knights
Templar cemetery it is built over. The palazzo was completed in 1487
by Giovanni Dario, a senator. He lived in it with his daughter and
son-in-law, until she committed suicide.

In the 16th century, the house was lived in by the Barbaro family
until their son, Giacomo, was killed in an ambush. An Armenian jewel
merchant went bankrupt after buying it.

In later centuries, there was a suicide at a party in front of guests
and an American who bought the house fled the country when rumours of
his homosexuality leaked out. His lover then killed himself in Mexico.

The buyer of the palazzo has not revealed his identity, but has
paid $11-million for it, according to the newspaper La Stampa. In
recent years, the Dario palazzo has been offered to the Guggenheim
and Benetton families, both of whom turned it down.

It has also been marketed to Woody Allen and Elton John. Venetians
currently go on ghost tours of the property during the day, but are
loath to stay there past sunset.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress