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Venezia Autentica in a nutshell
Venezia Autentica is a social business founded to save Venice, Italy, from the negative effects of mass tourism and help Venetians stay live and work in Venice. Venezia Autentica connects tourists with the information and tools they need to support and sustain the local Venetian economy and community, keeping the Venetians in Venice and therefore the city vibrant and authentic. Venezia Autentica works closely with the local business owners and associations while constantly developing new ways to make tourism a better and more rewarding experience as well as a source of local development.
Venezia Autentica's Mission & Work
Our mission is to change the way the World sees and impacts Venice, to build a better future for the Venetians in Venice. We organize our work around these 4 areas:
Something we'd like you to know
- Simply put, Valeria Duflot and Sebastian Fagarazzi, the co-founders of Venezia Autentica, want a future in Venice, both for themselves and everybody who would like to be living there. They are part of a generation which is rapidly shrinking in number because of a lack of opportunities. If nothing changes, Venice will empty itself of Venetians and become a soulless theme park in only a few decades. In order to avoid this, Valeria and Sebastian decided to work on an alternative. They are convinced that the key to saving Venice is to keep people living and working in the city and that it is the people themselves, Venetians and visitors, who can make it happen.
- The idea at the core of Venezia Autentica is that the international love for Venice, as well as responsible travelers, are key to the future of the Venetians and therefore of Venice.
- Venezia Autentica believes that there is no Venice without Venetians and that it is critical to keep the local population living and working in Venice. The concept behind the social enterprise is to empower people to have a direct and immediate impact on the future of the Venetians, by providing travelers and Venice lovers with the right set of tools and information.
- The ultimate aim of Venezia Autentica is to create a people-powered model allowing residents and visitors to cohabitate harmoniously in cities currently suffering from Mass tourism.
- The team behind Venezia Autentica is exceptionally suited for this task thanks to their experience of both the visitor and local point of views in Venice, the only European city threatened to be removed from the UNESCO World Heritage list because of a poor management of the local tourism.
- The idea of Venezia Autentica was born in Valeria’s mind on the 25th of March 2015, a day of celebration of the local culture and identity. It’s after the closing of Sebastian‘s family shop, in July 2015, due to the pressure of mass tourism, that Valeria convinced Sebastian that they should get to work, together, on changing things in Venice.
- Valeria and Sebastian launched Venezia Autentica on Social Media in October 2015 and started sharing news, info, and stories about the authentic Venice and the Venetians. From the earliest days, they shared unusual and original content aimed at making it easy for people to discover the authentic Venice and support directly the Venetians, as well as to raise awareness about the issues the city faces because of mass tourism and the consequences it has on the local community. They rapidly assembled the fastest growing community of Venice lovers. To date, they have over 30 000 followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
- In September 2016, they launched veneziaautentica.com, a website where users can find information, medias, and stories about Venice’s people, history, culture, traditions, contemporary life and lifestyle, as well as recommendations and tips to experience Venice like real Venetians by eating, drinking, shopping, strolling where the locals do. The platform veneziaautentica.com sports a constantly updated and growing list of their favorite authentic Venetian businesses, in order for everyone to be able to visit and support them directly. Since the launch of the website, Valeria and Sebastian have received many testimonies of Venice lovers and business owners alike stating the importance and impact of the work Venezia Autentica is doing and how it’s improving their experience of Venice.
- In March 2017, Valeria and Sebastian co-founded Venezia Autentica SRLS, a social business, that they created to accelerate the impact of Venezia Autentica’s work and values. The idea is to create more initiatives aiming at changing the relationship between locals and tourists, bringing closer Venetians and visitors, supporting the local businesses, creating rewarding opportunities for the Venetian youth, and improving the life of the Venetians as well as the quality of the stay of the visitors.
- In August 2017, Valeria and Sebastian launched the “Venezia Autentica Friends’ Pass”, a new and unique personal card that travelers can acquire on their website for only 10 euros and which gives them access to a 10% discount for a whole year at all the artisan shops part of the scheme. All artisan shops can be identified by the presence of Venezia Autentica’s logo on their window and have signed a charter of values in which they commit to being and continue providing their customers with authentic, quality, sustainable products, and services. The objective of this initiative is to support, valorize and promote the small local businesses that make Venice proud and to make it easier for their potential costumers to recognize and patronize them. Besides supporting the work of the Venetian business owners and the mission of Venezia Autentica, the money collected when selling the Venezia Autentica Friends’ Pass also fuels a fund that the social enterprise will dedicate to supporting local initiatives both from non-for-profit and citizens themselves. Indeed, the value of one pass is set aside every 10 passes sold.
- In September 2017, the above mentioned ‘Venezia Autentica Friends’ program started expanding to local bars, restaurants, pizzeria, gelateria, etc. meeting high standards of authenticity, quality, and sustainability. As it is the case with the artisan shop owners, all the new onboarded business owners committed to follow and continue following our dedicated charter of values as well as to reward people looking for them with a 10% discount for bills of over 30 euros.
- In October 2017, Venezia Autentica launched a new website ‘Venezia Autentica Experience’ dedicated to the promotion of a tourism where locals and visitors meet and share time together. This time is dedicated to an intimate discovery and/or transmission of local arts, crafts, traditions or to the simple exploration of the Venetian life and lifestyle and allows tourists to get a more meaningful and rewarding experience of Venice while supporting directly the local(s) they meet. It is also an opportunity to reinvent the relationship between tourists and locals and to transform tourism, something often felt by residents as a needed inconvenience, into a moment of fraternity and sharing. Last but not least, by booking an experience with locals, visitors contribute to making it easier for Venetians to stay in Venice doing what they love and to make a living out of it, something essential in a city where jobs and industries are in scarcity.
More info about Venezia Autentica Friends' Program: Intro video & Friends Hub
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