Set in one of the most spectacular sites around Lake Como, this sumptuous hotel boasts three swimming pools, gourmet restaurants, an Espa spa and the grandest suites on the lake – the rooftop ones come with their own Jacuzzi, private deck, butler and chauffeur service.
The iconic Villa d’Este Hotel is the kind of place you have to go to once in your life. With its famous Veranda restaurant, floating swimming pool and sundeck, tennis courts and one of the most famously difficult golf courses in Italy, it epitomizes pure, old-school glamour. Villa d’Este’s newest private villa, Mosaic House, is its most romantic, set in the hotel’s classical gardens with its own sweeping private terrace.
The two-bedroom Pavilion at the Villa Làrio hotel starts from £1,365 per night, or enquire about taking over all six rooms for a party.
Rooms at this magnificent hotel start from £810, or you can enquire about the price of the 16th-century Villa Pliniana, which sleeps up to 39 people.
Just south of Bellagio, apartments here start from £185 for a one-bedroom minimalist apartment (there is a three-night minimum stay). It also has a rare slice of beach offering kayaking, stand-up paddle-boarding and hiking expeditions.
Italy specialist Bellini Travel has access to the grandest homes on the lake, including the wonderful, baroque Villa La Quiete, which is also managed by Grand Hotel Tremezzo (sleeps up to 12; price on application) and the historic Villa di Como, which is only accessible by boat (sleeps up to 16; from £10,000 per week). Bellini Travel also has the inside track on cosy little trattorias high up in the hills, where the finest silks are still weaved, plus everything you need to know about navigating the lake by boat and avoiding the heavy traffic in the summer.
Abercrombie & Kent Villas has access to incredible historic villas such as Villa Balbiano in Ossuccio (sleeps up to 12; price on application), which belonged to one of the old silk industrialists and is considered one of the lake’s great private villas (it was recently re-configurated by French decorator Jacques Garcia), and the composer Bellini’s former home Palazzo Moltrasio (sleeps up to 19; from £38,000 per week)