Here are two such gondolas. Not surprisingly, they are both wedding gondolas, and each has several custom items which sets it apart from other gondolas.
Look closely and you’ll see varnished floorboards, custom chairs and benches, and both have highly ornate scimiers (the carved piece which sits atop the main seat).
One has an ornately carved forcola while the other has striped remi. Both gondolas have the unique cape-like piece on the back of the main seat with matching pillows. The most expensive pieces on the gondolas are likely to be the cavalli (seahorse statues), I’m sure they are coveted by many gondoliers who row past these boats. There are many different styles of cavalli, and these are among the best and most expensive on the market, but these have been gold plated rather than kept in polished brass.
I didn’t find these two boats near the Rialto or even along one of the hotel moorings on the Grand Canal, they were just tucked away at this little quay I like to haunt. It’s the same place I shot the photo of the gondolier’s with brown shoes from the blog post on 12/12/07.
There just always seems to be something interesting there.