News Calatrava’s bridge has been heavily criticised

After endless criticism over its aesthetic, its durability and even its accessibility for the disabled,Santiago Calatrava faces legal action as a result of alleged deficiencies in the construction

A Taste of Venice: At Table with Brunetti, By Donna Leon

Consumption plays a prominent part in Donna Leon's Commissario Brunetti novels. This is fair enough since the detective's beat takes him down the mean canals of Venice, where culinary temptations (with recipes by Roberta Pianaro) are somewhat more frequent than in Marlowe's LA.

Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall, By Kazuo Ishiguro

If time is the true subject matter of any fiction writer – how time changes, or fails to change us – few novelists can make it the subject matter itself without slipping into cliché. But time has always been Kazuo Ishiguro's forte. Most revered for The Remains of the Day, he plays with time exquisitely; past, present, future are his key notes, which he rearranges at will. These "quintets" read like the wise novelist having fun in experimentation.

Little Italy: Mark Hix serves up a feast of bite-sized venetian snacks

I know I wrote about tapas a few weeks ago, but what's really catching on these days is serving small plates of Italian food. These delicious cicchetti, as they are known, are served during the early evening in the bars of Venice – with a glass of wine, naturally.

The Solitude of Prime Numbers, By Paolo Giordano

This best-sellling Italian novel of childhood tragedy and its legacy treads a fine line between pathos and bathos. Paolo Giordano sparingly employs the lonely music of the primes as a symbol of post-traumatic grief.

Renato Brunetta: On a mission to save La Serenissima

Short in stature but big on work ethic, Italy's ambitious 'mini-minister' is after a second job – as mayor of Venice. Peter Popham reports

Peter Popham: A high-water mark of tourist culture

Venice Notebook: Waiters splosh through the winding <I>calle </I>dressed in dinner jacket, bow tie and galoshes

24-Hour Room Service: Hotel Danieli Riva degli Schiavoni, 4196, Venice, Italy

Let's get the cost question out of the way right at the start. The Danieli is not cheap. In fact it's phenomenally expensive. The cheapest double room at the lowest point of the low season is €280. That rises to €510 a night in peak season. The most expensive double room in peak season comes in at €925. And then there are the suites ....

Luxury bargains: Italy in winter

When I last checked, Rome’s Colosseum and the Sistine chapel in the Vatican had not changed. Up in the north of Italy in this magical, majestic land, Venice's Grand Canal still retained the allure that has enticed travellers down the centuries.

Love Italian? We reveal the secrets of Venetian cuisine

Forget piles of pasta and dustbin-lid sized pizza. The small but beautiful secret of Venetian cuisine has arrived. Simon Usborne says 'Ciao!'

Verdi Otello, London Symphony Orchestra &amp; Chorus/ Davis, Barbican Hall, London

The real “Lion of Venice” here was Sir Colin Davis – 80-something going on 40-something and every inch the commander in chief as the mighty storm at the outset of Verdi’s Otello exploded from the Barbican platform.

Funeral held for Venetians' 'dying city'

Two-thirds of city's natives driven out by flood of tourists who force up prices

BFI London Film Festival: The capital projects a sharper festival

The capital's celebration of cinema has had a troubled history. But, aided by a cash injection, it is at last shedding its B-movie status, says Kaleem Aftab

Turner and the Masters: Competitive streak

There's nothing like rivalry to inspire great art. A new exhibition exploring Turner's debt to fellow artists finds he surpasses most of them, says Michael Glover

Venice Film Festival, Venice

Where else could you see Jane Birkin walk a tightrope?

Venice Film Festival - More highs than lows on the Lido

With politics, pilgrimages and Pixar on the menu, not to mention a gondola fleet of glamorous stars, this year's Venice Film Festival has been a return to form. About time too, says Geoffrey Macnab
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Robert De Niro has walked off the set of Edge of Darkness
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Fearne Cotton is leaving Radio 1 after a decade
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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

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Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

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Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
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Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
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A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

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Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower