Italy in Epcot: The 'Campanile di San Marco'

The design of Epcot's Italy Pavilion was created to showcase hallmarks of Italian architecture. The pavilion is modeled after St. Mark's Square in Venice with the large tower in the central plaza representing a one-fifth scale model of the 'Campanile di San Marco', the Bell tower of St Mark from the classic Italian city of Venice.

Epcot's Plaza del TeatroEpcot's Plaza del Teatro
In Epcot the 'Campanile di San Marco' is surrounded by potted flowers and herbs, as well small tables where guests can sit and enjoy a glass of wine from Enoteca Castello as they watch the people bustle to and fro. It's simple lower form, a square fluted brick shaft, lends to the puzzling sparsity many associate with the Italian pavilion. My top tip for getting the most out of visiting the lovely Plaza del Teatro at Epcot is to stand back, and look up.

A Potted Herb and Flower Garden Surrounds the Tower BaseA Potted Herb and Flower Garden Surrounds the Tower Base
The 83-foot tower's belfry is topped by a cube, with alternate faces depicting the Lion of St. Mark and the female representation of Venice. Capped by a pyramidal spire, at the top sits a golden weather-vane in the form of the Archangel Gabriel. The angel was made from a model of the original and like it's inspiration is covered in real gold leaf. A significant variation to the Epcot Tower is the addition of a lightning rod to the archangel.

Epcot's Campanile di San MarcoEpcot's Campanile di San Marco
The original Bell Tower's construction began in the 9th Century to be used as a lighthouse and watch tower for the dock. The 'Campanile di San Marco' is one of the most recognizable symbols of Venice; in Epcot, as in it's original home, it overlooks romantic bridges on World Showcase and canals full of gondolas.

Have you taken a moment to wonder about this piece of Italian architecture in the Italy Pavilion? Do you enjoy sitting beneath the tower and people watching in the Plaza del Teatro? Leave a comment and let us know what your thoughts are about this classic structure.

Hardy0109 wrote on Tue, 08/28/2012 - 07:53:

Hardy0109's picture

I have always taken lots of time to take in the Italy pavilion. It's very nice, and I like architecture like what you see in the pavilion.

Sil wrote on Tue, 08/28/2012 - 14:48:

Sil's picture


MAC104 wrote on Tue, 08/28/2012 - 18:22:

MAC104's picture

I have always found Italy a very soothing pavillion. Would still like to see some type extra (3D movie or other) to give you the feel of being in italy.

TsuKata wrote on Wed, 09/05/2012 - 17:25:

TsuKata's picture

We really love taking photos of landmarks in countries we visit and comparing them to the Disney versions. St. Mark's Square was one of our favorites to compare, in particular because there's also a version of it in Las Vegas!

Kristen K. wrote on Fri, 09/07/2012 - 21:31:

Kristen K.'s picture

That's a fantastic photo hunt!

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