Tucked away in the Alpine Valley of Northern Italy, the Lake Como region is often touted as a ‘playground for the rich and famous’. With breath-taking views, serene gardens and luxurious resorts, Como is the perfect destination to escape to, away from stress and the hustle-bustle of a hectic daily routine. Discover our journey, as we explore this hidden gem
First Day Adventures
11am: Arrive In Style
Arrive at Hotel Villa d’Este, your luxury resort for the next two days. Located in Cernobbio, sprawled over 25 acres of lush gardens and beautiful architecture, this world-renowned hotel overlooks the picturesque lake. Once home to the Italian monarchs, the charming estate is comprised of several villas, fantastic restaurants, prestigious stores and divine sceneries. Top that with impeccable service and a personalised concierge, and you have the perfect, opulent experience.
1pm: The Epic Escape
One of the many perks of staying at Hotel Villa d’Este is easy access to the lake. Hop on a personal boat tour of the Lago di Como to get a flavour of the towns perched upon the lakeshores. When you’ve taken enough photos of the mesmerising views, make a stop at Bellagio, one of the most exclusive areas in Lake Como.
5pm: Snack Siesta
Siesta, the afternoon nap, is a famous source of R&R for the people of southern Europe. We completely surrender to the idea — after so much activity, you may be fatigued. We recommend a pit stop at Hotel Splendide’s panoramic terrace bar. Their appetising classic pizza and homemade potato wedges make for a nice afternoon snack. To quench your thirst, try their freshly squeezed grapefruit juice — it will have you refreshed in seconds.
7pm: The Villa Life
One famous attraction in the Como region is the elaborate villas and the lush estates spread across the area, with heavenly views of the lake. The town of Bellagio houses a few prominent villas, which you simply cannot miss. One such locale is the Villa del Melzi. This luxurious mansion once belonged to the aristocracy of Italy. The villa’s garden, Giardini del Melzi, is a quiet getaway from the hustle and bustle of Bellagio, making it the perfect spot for a relaxing session with your favourite novel. Take a walk through the colourful architectural structure, and discover Villa Serbelloni, another sprawling mansion with a breath-taking view.
8:30pm: Dinner With A View
End your trip to Bellagio with a mouth-watering dinner. The Hotel Metropole Bellagio is your place to go. Their terrace restaurant is equipped with incredible views of Bellagio, Lake Como, and the surrounding coasts. When you’re done taking Instagram photos (trust us, this view will have your fingers on the click button throughout the night), order the ‘Grilled Sea Bass’, a local favourite. For those of you looking for the authentic flavour of Italy, indulge in the ‘Fresh Tomato Penne’.
Second Day Serenity
10am: The Shopping Haven
No vacation or getaway is complete without a bit of retail therapy. If you’re looking to indulge yourself in the best of this season’s runway trends, look no further, Hotel Villa d’Este is home to the exclusive Vergottini Boutique. From über-cool Fendi pieces to magnificent McQueen clutches, the boutique’s carefully curated selection will leave you stunned. If your taste includes vintage or local treasurables, venture out to the Centro di Como, to discover the nearby artisanal talent.
12pm: Lunch By The Pool
After all that extensive shopping, you may need to refuel. To grab a casual bite, head over to the Sundeck Pool Bar. Overlooking an azure blue pool and serene lake, the bar, covered in umbrellas, offers tasty snacks. We highly recommend the scrumptious ‘Tomato and Cheese Penne’, and the juicy ‘Beef Burger’. The satisfying side of fries will complement your meal perfectly. To beat the heat, we recommend you complete lunch with a fresh plate of succulent watermelon.
3pm: The Secret Garden
One of the major perks of staying at a fabulous resort is that you don’t have to wander too far to discover something exciting. One of the main highlights of the Villa d’Este is the scenic garden. Walk through acres of lush chestnut and pine trees, delicate azaleas, rose bushes and exquisite bamboos. This Renaissance-style garden is the most talked about attraction, and a 16th century mosaic — the perfect backdrop to take a few envy-evoking Snapchats.
5pm: Tea Party For Two
Hotel Villa d’Este’s Bar Canova offers the ideal atmosphere to unwind, relax and enjoy a fine cup of Darjeeling tea. The charming architecture, the fine notes of the live, classical piano and the sublime views from the terrace will leave you spellbound. To top it all off, the tea is unbelievably delectable — you won’t be able to resist just one cup.
7pm: The Royal Return
Amongst the many luxurious services Hotel Villa d’Este has to offer, without a doubt, our favourite is the personal chartered helicopter. As you embark on the last leg of your journey, head back to the airport, or to another fabulous Italian resort (we hear Portifino is great), using the helicopter service. As you fly over the estate, you will witness striking views of the quaint Lake Como and its surrounding Alpine mountains. Truly a picture-perfect postcard shot.