Ca' da Mosto is one of Venice's oldest palaces. It is located in the Cannaregio district and overlooks the Grand Canal not far from the Rialto Bridge. Renovated many times, it presents an interesting facade partly built according to the stylistic features of the Venetian-Byzantine style architecture.
Its construction is generally traced back to the 13th century when the da Mosto family entered the Venetian patriciate. However, the portego on the waterfront may be even older. It is likely that the owner of the palace was Marco da Mosto.
In this palace, the famous explorer Alvise Cadamosto was born and died; from 1454 to 1462, he was in Portugal in Henry the Navigator's service. From the sixteenth to the eighteenth century was used as a hotel: it became the seat of the Leon Bianco, one of the most famous in Venice, founded in 1661, hosted many illustrious characters.
Like other ancient palaces in the Veneto-Byzantine style, it consists of porticoes on the first floor, called 'feet in the water', giving access to the canal, and the piano nobile, long galleries pierced by bays with pointed arches. Its façade is completed with Byzantine marble decorations.
The first floor of the building was used as a warehouse for merchandise, the second as an office and customer reception area, and the last as housing for merchants.
The rear facade, of a much simpler character, overlooks a small courtyard: it has a central triple lancet window, an external staircase, and a vast vaulted ground portal.