Lake Como is situated just above Milan and just below the Alps and it’s one of the most stunning locations on Earth. Here are your luxury things to do.
Lake Como has been a popular luxury destination for hundreds of years, in fact it’s been a retreat to aristocrats since the Roman times and if you’ve never visited it before you simply need to visit it once to be convinced that it’s one of the most glorious locations on Earth.
The lake has glacial origins and it’s the third largest lake in Italy. At a depth of 400 meters, Lake Como is one of the deepest lakes in Europe. Its reverse Y shape is something to behold as it makes the lake look like a narrow river that cuts through the stunning green mountains in the area. The northern branch of the lake begins at the town of Colico, the most southeast point of the lake is the city of Lecco, while the most southwestern is the city of Como.
The mild climate of the lake which never falls below zero over winter and never goes above 30 during the summer makes it an ideal spot for those who are looking for luxury vacations in a laid back environment. Amongst the myriads of rich people who own houses by the lake are notable figures of the business world like Richard Branson, the music world like Madonna and the entertainment world like George Clooney.
Of course the tradition of the lakeside villas is not something that began with Hollywood stars, the tradition of the lakeside villas dates back to the Roman sites and there are many beautiful villas that rest next to the lake. Most villas also have gorgeous gardens which the mild climate helps maintain colourful and vivid throughout the year, so apart from the breath-taking scenery that makes up this lake, there are also luscious gardens to dazzle you.
But Lake Como shouldn’t be your next luxury vacation destination just because of the amazing landscape of the area, it should also go on your bucket list because there are myriads of unique things to do if you’re interested in a luxury experience of a lifetime.
Below we’ve listed some of the most refined activities in which you can partake during your stay in Lake Como, as well some of the best luxury hotels and expensive restaurants you should visit. Make sure that you let us know if you have any other recommendations in the comment section below.
If you’re planning a stay at Lake Como you’ll soon discover that if there’s one thing that the lake is not lacking are luxury hotels, but if you’re looking for the ultimate luxurious experience we suggest you stay in one of the two hotels listed below as they offer unparalleled luxury combined with stunning views of the lake and the Alps.
This authentic art-nouveau palace is a historic hotel and with over one hundred years of history it’s guaranteed to offer you one of the best luxury vacations of your life. This luxury hotel is situated next to Villa Carlotta gardens, and it overlooks Bellagio and the Grigne mountains.
Whichever room you decide to stay in, this luxury hotel promises to provide you with stunning views of either the gardens or the lake so have a look at your options in regards to rooms and suites here. The simplest of rooms available is anything but simple, the Park View Prestige Room is decorated elegantly and it overlooks the colourful flower garden. You’ll need to part with 500 euros a night to stay in this beautiful room, but if money isn’t a concern make sure that you book one of the exclusive rooftop suites that cost an average of 2,100 euros a night and offer stunning views of the lake.
#2 Villa D’Este
Villa D’Este is widely considered one of the best hotels in the world and it’s renowned for its cuisine and hospitality so staying here will definitely add to your luxury vacations. The hotel is situated in a 16th century former princely residence which surrounded by a 25 acre park with beautiful gardens.
The old-world décor of this luxury hotel will whisk you back in time and although you’ll need to part with anything between 700 euros and 3,000 euros for a night at this luxury hotel, the hotel staff promises to treat you like royalty so it will definitely be money well spent.
Although it’s common for people to think they are in Switzerland rather than in Italy when sitting by the lake and looking at the Alps, once it’s dinner time you’ll be reminded that you’re in the mecca of culinary options. There are excellent expensive restaurants around the lake and be prepared to have some of the most gourmet Italian meals of your life.
If you’re at a loss and can’t decide where to dine we suggest that you visit the Michelin-star awarded La Veranda.
This expensive restaurant is situation in Villa D’Este and it’s in fact the hotel’s formal restaurant (remember to wear jackets and ties). Expect to have some of the best gourmet Italian dishes of your life here. Chef Michele puts all his passion and attention to detail when creating each dish and it’s widely believed that it may be the best meal you’ll have at Lake Como. Prices for the a la carte menu range between 80 and 254 euros and if the weather permits, you’ll be able to sit on the terrace by the lake.
Lake Como may not be in Tuscany, yet Lombardy boasts some excellent wine varieties as well so make sure that you make the most of your luxury vacations by seizing the opportunity and learning a bit more about wine.
You’ll find that the area offers great wine tasting excursions, for example this wine tasting trip to Bergamo is not only a short distance from Lake Como, but the company that runs the service also offers luxury transportation throughout the day and a tour of the historic city of Bergamo.
However, if you are not interested in leaving the lake during your stay, you’ll be happy to learn that there are other wine tasting activities in the area as well. For example, Enoteca Cava Turacciolo in Bellagio is an 18th century cellar which offers more than 300 labels of local and national wines, the wines can be tasted together with a selection of freshly caught lake fish, mixed meats, cheese and pasta plates. This historic Enoteca is actually a great way to get to know the village of Bellagio so make sure you walk through this picturesque village.
All wind related sports are practiced in Lake Como (including kitesurfing and windsurfing) and if you’re really interested in leading a luxury lifestyle you need to learn how to windsurf like the elite does and the best place to do that is at Lake Como.
The Breva of Como is a strong valley wind that blows through the lake and this wind actually makes windsurfing conditions in the lake ideal. The town of Domaso is where the wind is most prominent in the lake so in order to make the most of it head over to this town, which is up north closer to Colico than to Como or Lecco and learn how to windsurf. The Windsurfing School of Domaso is great place to begin; a beginner’s course will require that you dedicate 5 mornings (2.5 hours each) and it’ll cost you 225 euros.
Lake Como is one of the most serene places in the world and it should be your designated go-to-relax spot if you can afford this type of luxury vacation. There plenty of spa resorts that you can enjoy in Lake Como, but perhaps the best spa in the lake is the T-Spa in Grand Hotel Tremezzo. This super-stylish spa offers panoramic views of the lake which will your mind and spirit relax, while there are also many treatments available that will renew you. The signature 110 minutes Lake Como Relaxing Ritual is definitely recommended as you will experience a ritual that will help calm your mind and soothe your body. At 240 euros it’s perhaps the best value for money in this stunning lake. You can have a look at all the treatments that the spa offers here.
What other luxury activities have you done in Lake Como? Share your memories with us.