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Villas in Lake of Como

Posted by Ciro Ianniello on November 2, 2016
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Villa Serbelloni

Via Roma, 1, 22021 Bellagio CO Tel.031950216

Villa SerbelloniThe Villa Serbelloni, owned by the family Sfondrati, when in 1533 it was handed over to the Duke Alessandro Serbelloni already boasted an ancient history. The outdoor, large and simple lines, was not changed; the interior was lavishly decorated, vaulted and coffered, paintings and art objects. However the Duke Serbelloni, more than the villa became interested immense park, by building tracks carriage, avenues and paths for a ‘extension of about 18 km.

In 1826 the Duke died in Bellagio, and the villa was inherited by his sons, Giovan Battista and Ferdinando. After the death of the latter, fell into gradual disuse, and since 1870 the heirs rented the property to Antonio Mella, who turned it into an annex of ‘Hotel de la Grande Bretagne; Finally in 1907 they sold it to a Swiss company who made the ‘Hotel Serbelloni. The hotel was bought by Princess Ella Walker that left her in 1959 as a legacy to the Rockefeller Foundation.

Today Villa Serbelloni is used as a place to stay and a meeting place for scholars. Many were the distinguished guests who have stayed in the villa, we can remember when it was still owned by the Sfonderati: Emperor Maximilian I, Leonardo da Vinci, Lodovico il Moro, Bianca Sforza, Cardinal Borromeo. In the nineteenth century the array of guests is impressive: Pellico, Moroncelli, Emperor Francis I, Queen Victoria, Kaiser Wilhelm, Umberto I; writers such as Manzoni, Grossi, Pindemonte.

The park of Villa Serbelloni is open to the public with guided tours for a minimum of 6 and a maximum of 30 for a period of ca. 1:30 a.m. departing at 11:00 15.30 and the Office of Promobellagio site at ground floor of the medieval tower in Piazza of the Church of St. James the high part of paese.Attenzione during the middle of where existing hours solar energy, afternoon visit is moved at 14:30


Open from 15th March to November 1 every day except Monday and in case of bad weather.


9.00 EUR per person. Groups (min. 20 pax) 7.00 EUR per person. School groups and children 7 to 13 years € 5.00 per person. Children under 7 years of age free.

For group reservations are required by contacting the Promo Bellagio.

From 15 March to 31 March and from 25 October to 1 November visits to 11:00 and at 14:30.

Villa Melzi

Lungolario via Manzoni, 22021 Bellagio CO Tel.3394573838

Villa MelziThe most intriguing part of the garden of the Villa Melzi in Bellagio is, without a doubt, the large park that is developed on the lake. Amaze first expansions perspective that mask the lack of space between the hill and the lake.

At the entrance visitors encounter a monument to Dante and Beatrice and a flooded water covered with water lilies. Immediately after stands a kiosk in arabesque style which offers a magnificent view of Bellagio.

In memory of the Egyptian campaign of Napoleon Bonaparte, an Egyptian statue overlooking mysterious on the shores of the lake. An avenue of plane trees adorned introduces the terrace in the frieze at the entrance of the villa, where you can admire old already externally noteworthy statues. A chapel frames the garden ennobled by several monuments neoclassical.

Continuing with the way the garden opens in a blaze of rare and exotic plants, interspersed with tall trees and hedges secular monuments of rhododendrons, camellias and azaleas. Later the old orange grove grown in greenhouses, now houses the premises of the Museum of the Italian Republic of the Napoleonic period.

Villa Carlotta

Via Regina, 2, CO 22019 Tremezzina Tel.034440405

Villa CarlottaVilla Carlotta is located on the western shore of Lake Como, surrounded by towering mountains and breathtaking views on the peninsula of Bellagio. The period of construction dates back to about 1690, and you have the foresight to Giorgio Clerici (wealthy banker of Milan). During the passage of time the house has had several owners and so benefit from a variety of embellishments and expansions. The property Clerici incorporated the building of the Italian garden and the beautiful and fragrant citrus arbor that leads to Villa.

With ownership of Fam. Sommaria in the immediate aftermath, the Villa is transformed into an extraordinary outdoor museum where statues of Canova, the Thorvaldesen and Hayez, embellish a park now mold romantic caves, hidden paths and unexpected as enchanting perspective spaces.

The next Fam. Saxony-Meiningen introduces a diverse “landscape garden” that still enjoys a well-deserved international reputation. The park of Villa Carlotta it is famous for the wonderful and colorful spring bloom.

Majestic plane trees, cypresses tapered, relaxing cedars, giant sequoias, azaleas caressing accompany us to discover places where the art of gardening rises to incredible levels of perfection. The valley of ferns, the rock garden or the garden of rhododendrons are some examples.

Villa Balbianello

Via Comoedia, 522 016 Tremezzina Tel.0344 CO 56110

Villa BalbianelloTo get closer to the spectacular Villa del Balbianello the boat is without doubt the best. The nautical route makes it possible to fully appreciate the majestic beauty of the eighteenth-century building that stands on a verdant bluff overlooking the waters of the lake. The impact to the eye is likely to be immortalized in numerous paintings, prints, engravings and photographs. A good title to Villa del Balbianello is an integral part of the landscape lacuale.

Despite the beauty, the real peculiarity of the villa is once again the garden, designed according to the lake and its shores. Austere rock topped with three arches that dominates the stretch higher, you can explore walking on romantic paths where, oaks, magnolias, plane trees, cypress trees and wisteria are the background of ancient statues.

Beautifully honoring the classic tradition of the Italian garden of the ‘700, laurel hedges and boxwood, perfectly geometric and elegant, circumscribe the different areas of the villa by lush green lawns.

Villa Monastero

Viale Giovanni Polvani, 4, Varenna LC Tel.0341830129

Villa Monastero VarennaVilla Monastero is definitely an interesting example of eclectic style residence resulted from the addition of functional and decorative elements to the existing building, so as to get a villa with a garden of great visual impact. Indeed Villa Monastero is a result of continuing and philological renovation of the Cistercian monastery of Santa Maria female born in 1208. It is thought that his foundation is to be linked with the religious settlements of the opposite shore of Lake Como: the monastery SS. Faustino and Jovita on ‘lsola Comacina, from which the refugees of 1169.

From 1569 to 1862 the monastery buildings were owned by the family Mornico, and already in these three centuries functional restructuring were many. In the second half of the nineteenth century, at the hands of successive owners (Genazzini, Maumary Seufferheld, Kees, De Marchi), Villa Monastero began to undergo a series of transformations.

Singular example of this style is the interesting staircase built with polychrome marble, ceramics and stucco, as well as the sumptuous bathroom said Pompeian or King Farouk. In 1918 the entire property passed to ‘National Opera Fighters; was then aquistata by dr. Marco De Marchi who later donated it lnstitute of Hydrobiology Italian Marco De Marchi.

The environments and ornaments made between 1897 and 1909 are based on models of the Baroque and Rococo German, while the furnishings of the villa show characters and previous styles: there are indeed environments Neo-Renaissance, Art Nouveau, and Mannerist. Among the numerous halls of Villa Monastero stand out:

The Council chamber, known in the documents of the century with the name disala perhaps green for the color of the furniture and curtains. The dining Kennedy, with the painted ceiling and the floor is decorated in period style (private room diCarlotta Kees, wife of the previous owner of the villa). The living room Mornico, furnished belonged to Marco de Marchi and previously used as a library by the family Morico. (XXVIII sec.) The Red Room by the color of the furniture style rococo, used as a reception room by the family Kees. The dining Black, the color of the furniture and tapestries of the late nineteenth century, and used as a boardroom. The Conference Hall, named after the fisicoEnrico Fermi who in 1954 took part in the courses organized by the University of Milan. But the park is to be the most important attraction of Villa Monastero. A botanical garden of particular interest due to the healthy state of climate Varenna presents littered exotic tree species: you can admire Palme African and American, agaves, yuccas, dragon trees, citrus trees and oleanders, along with some botanical rarities such as Erythea Army. Until kaffee – haus (far end of the garden), also the architectural elements that decorate the park show the same variety: balustrades, statues, temples, vases, wellheads and fountains. Walkways and stairways agree nicely with the surrounding area and with the backdrop of Lake Como. The most valuable piece is the sculpture of Clemenza di Tito, the work of Giovanni Battista Comolli neoclassical. The park of Villa Monastero is so remarkable both for its historical value, both for the proposed path of relaxation for visitors.

Villa Olmo

Via Cantoni, 1 22100 Como Tel.031573800

Como Villa OlmoAmong the villas of Como, Villa Olmo is certainly the best known and owes its name to a centuries-old mighty elm, which no longer exists, which legend says was planted by Pliny the Younger.

Erected to desire the Marquis Innocenzo Odescalchi, it was to become the summer residence of the Marquis. The work commissioned Ticino architect Simone Cantoni, began in the year 1782 and was completed in 1797. Formed by a central body that encloses the structure of the middle zone in five rooms entrance above which rise six columns of Ionic style ( evident neoclassical).

In 1797 it housed Napoleon Bonaparte in 1808, and Ugo Foscolo. In 1824 the house passed to the family Raimondi. During that time guests were the Queen of the Two Sicilies, the emperors of Austria, Franz Ferdinand and Maria Carolina, Metternich, Radetzsky, and Giuseppe Garibaldi that here was involved in a love affair with Giuseppina Raimondi.

In 1883 the property was sold to the Visconti di Modrone, who entrusted the architect Emilio At magna some additions (like the theater of 90 seats) and some demolitions (stables and a porch).

Passed the atrium views open at once on the big ballroom with statues and frescoes, but there are still many other frescoed rooms and a chapel with magnificent bas-reliefs. In the park that surrounds it, open to the public, is a neo-classical temple; while, by the sculptor Odolfredi, in the center of the garden in front of the villa stands a marble fountain depicting two children playing dragging a sea monster. In 1924 the villa was acquired by the city of Como which has made for conferences, art exhibitions, cultural and musical events (the Autumn Music Festival and the Teatro Sociale di Como).

Useful information

Tel: 031 576169 for info and pren. Tel. 031252352
Fax: 031 252471


Villa open at events and from Monday to Saturday: 9:00 to 12:30 and 14:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Park open from 7:30 to 19:00 in winter and from 7.30 to 23.00 in summer


Free admission to the park

Accessible to disabled people

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