Immersed in the foothills of the North Italian Alps, lies Lake Como. Lake Como is one of Europe’s deepest lakes. The picturesque destination has been known for centuries to haven wealthy Romans, royalty, artists, poets, and celebrities. Lake Como also features many fine craftsmen who craft high-quality silk, leather products, and Italian jewelry.
Lake Como is an international marvel. Though it’s better known as a luxury retreat, the Italian sapphire village also has an eclectic local flair.
Lake Como is one of those places where if you slept outside, you’d still be embracing luxury. The natural setting is luxurious in of itself and furthermore, priceless. However, since Lake Como is an elite destination for the world renown, the village offers an array of splendid villas.
Here are a few of Lake Como’s villas that echo luxury.
For an Old-World Feel: Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni
Situated right on the shoreline in Bellagio, the Grand Hotel was formerly a private residence of a Milanese family in the mid-1800’s. In true Neoclassical style, the villa features frescoes, coffered ceilings, gilded accents, marble staircases, and crystal chandeliers.
Consequently, the hotel was originally built as a residence. Therefore, each hotel room is structured a bit differently, and each has its own unique decor. After a long day of playing tennis and a trip to the spa, you can tuck into one of the hotel’s two restaurants.
For Those Who Love Ultra-Exclusive: Villa Sola Cabiati
Villa Sola Cabiati was built in the 16th century as a summer residence and eventually ended up in the hands of the Sola Cabiati family. The home is still owned by the noble family but was recently brought under the exclusive management of the Grand Hotel Tremezzo.
The most exclusive way to access the property is to rent out the entire Villa. That’s if you are willing to foot the $10,000 per night bill. This request cannot be filled over the hotel’s online booking, nor is it granted easily to inquiring guests. Management wishes to keep the villa as exclusive as possible just as if it had remained a private residence for the Italian elite.
For Modern Luxury: Il Sereno Hotel
Il Sereno is the newest darling of Lake Como with its ultra-modern luxury design created by Patricia Urquiola. Situated on the shores of Torno, you’re only a short boat ride away from Como, which is full of shops selling fine Italian jewelry and silk.
The hotel was built with an emphasis of natural materials, including local stone and wood. Each bedroom features floor-to-ceiling windows to maximize guests’ panoramic views of the lake. Downstairs, the main lobby terrace looks right out onto the lake. It’s a great place to rendezvous with a cocktail before heading to the hotel’s restaurant influenced by the fresh flavors of the handsome Michelin star Chef Andrea Berton.
Not everyone will want to spend all their time wandering the cobbled streets of Lake Como’s towns. Hence, the plentiful activities you can partake in for both water and land.
On the Water
Most of all, Lake Como is one of the most treasured lakes in all of Europe. The sapphire blue waters truly embrace la dolce vita. The most noteworthy characteristic of Lake Como, is the villages respect for its history. Not just by preserving some of their most precious and centuries old villas and basilicas, but style as well. You’ll see a number of Como classic wooden boats gliding the waters. These antique classic boats are available for guided tours. Some of the top sights are George Clooney’s house and the villa where Casino Royale was filmed.
Hiking + Gardens
Since Lake Como is nestled in the mountains, there’s a variety of trails. Trails in the Lake Como region range from challenging to easy. The perfect hiking opportunity for visitors on a weekend getaway would be Spina Verde Park. Spina Verde is just over a 3 mile trail that leads to a 6th century Roman fort, named the Castel Baradello.
Especially relevant to the history of Lake Como is the flora and fauna. The Hotel Villa Cipressi is home to one of Lake Como’s most lush gardens. Though the hotel is reserved for guests, the garden is open to the public and is free to explore. Hotel Villa Cipressi’s botanic garden is centuries old, built in the 1400s.
The towns dotting the shores of Lake Como are known for a variety of beautiful hand-crafted products including silk, cashmere, leather goods, and Italian jewelry. One of Lake Como’s famous, family owned silk businesses is Azalea Bellagio. Family owned since 1968. As a result, the style of Lake Como is original and charming with handcrafted silk and Italian jewelry.
Furthermore, Bellagio is the pearl of Lake Como and is the most popular center in the area. The narrow streets make it fun to walk through as you can peek inside the many shops. Almost everyone who visits Lake Como has the pearl of Lake Como on their list to see.
Lastly, you can’t go to Lake Como and not experience the excellent dining scene. Don your new Italian jewelry or fine leather loafers and explore the exquisite flavors of the award winning restaurants of Lago di Como.
Mistral is in the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni. Prepare your taste buds for an extraordinary gastronomical feast like guacamole ice cream, cuttlefish ink waffles, and nitrogen ice cream all led by Michelin-star chef Ettore Bocchia.
Lake Como is a freshwater lake, with lots of species of fish. For the freshest catch of the day, check out Albergo Ristorante Silvio. Each morning, the managers of Silvio, located on Bellagio, head out to the lake and catch the fish for that evening.
In conclusion, Lake Como is a very special destination. With a lush and beautiful lake scenery. Boasting Italian jewelry, silk, and other extravagant goods, this lake village will elate you in pure romance. Not very many will visit Lake Como, but once you experience the history, the ambience, the terrain, Lake Como will be carried in your memories forever.