The kiosks of Jesolo, a 60-year tradition
by Giovanni Cagnassi
From wooden huts to actual commercial enterprises overlooking the beach, a point of reference for aggregation and safety. The history of the kiosks in the Lido began about 60 years ago together with the beach of Jesolo and the development of a seaside city that precisely relies on these enterprises for its tourist offer.
The kiosks are 51 and dot the coast like “lighthouses” that light up the beach. The pioneers started with mobile and prefabricated structures, which were then removed at the end of summer. They looked like huts but already exerted a certain fascination. They mostly sold water and soft drinks, tasty sandwiches with salami and soppressa fruit, the first coconuts and ice cream. Over the time, this profession has evolved and, about 25 years ago, took on the same characteristics that it has today.
Someone built a base in concrete, with load-bearing walls in sturdy wood. Today, the kiosks are still there, facing the beach, even in winter. In the summer, five or six persons work in few square meters.
The oldest kiosk is “ai Pini” kiosk in the Pineta, which is more than 60 years old. But there are many family-run realities that have been working in close contact with tourists for decades, not to mention the recent new entries. The kiosks are loved by families, but especially by the youth who choose them for their evening aperitif. No longer Coca Cola or Fanta, but the typical spritz from Jesolo, a must for all the boys and girls on holiday at the Lido.
“Our service has greatly changed over time”, Lorenzo Vallese, president of Veneto Chioschi – an association that gathers the kiosks in Veneto – explains, “in the past, we used to sell breakfasts and snacks, today we offer quick lunches and dinners, accompanied by aperitifs, convivial moments and special events such as concerts and entertainments for youth and families.”
In recent years, the owners have been busy with initiatives to raise awareness and help tourists. In addition to their commercial activities, in fact, they offer their guests support also in terms of safety.
Therefore, the offer has changed over time while always following the trend that has characterized the development of local tourism. From sunrise to sunset, sometimes up to the moonlight, these structures enliven the stays of tourists making their experience on the seafront unique.