Villa D’ Este Hotel at Lake Como, Italy, is a Wonderful Off Season Luxury Travel Destination.
by Lorre White, “The Luxury Guru”
As the international luxury media personality “The Luxury Guru” I always get asked about by my very wealthy followers, what are my Favorite(s) in every luxury category from yoga to yachts, private jets to perfume, candles to exotic cars. As stated in FORBES, Lorre’s “followers include Billionaires and Royals”. I have traveled the world extensively and stayed at many of the best resorts, spas and boutique hotels in the world. I have traveled on NBA excursions and on USA Dream Teams Olympic Tours. From athletes, to actors, fashion icons, to top executives, I have been involved in the top end of the luxury travel market for many years. My media fans like to know about the lesser known and off season luxury experiences; where they can go to relax in sophisticated, relaxed, and reclusive comfort.
One of my favorite getaway hotels is Villa D’ Este at Lake Como, which is about 40 minutes outside of Milan and just a couple of exits before the Swiss border. There are actually two main buildings, The Cardinal building and Queen’s Pavilion, both former palaces, that comprise this world class hotel. The 152 rooms are all differently and elegantly furnished with antiques, paintings and vintage prints. I personally prefer the main hotel and like to take a room overlooking Lake Como. Others prefer the smaller quirkier Queens building. Also, there are two new fully renovated villas for families with all the luxuries of home.
The Landscape is picture postcard perfect, the lake, the magnificent old villas, the formal gardens, the Alps, and the rich lush green landscaping.
Villa D’ Este’s larger main building, was built in 1568 as the summer estate of an Italian Cardinal. It was opened as a hotel in 1873 for the privileged elite. The current owner Jean Marc Droulers inherited the property in the 1960′s and has been very active it keeping it as a place frozen in time while subtly introducing changes like a floating pool and full spa.
Villa D’ Este is beautiful and full of activity during the peak summer season, but I find it a wonderful romantic getaway just off season in Spring and early Autumn too.
The rooms have the traditional high ceiling, the marble bath room floors are heated from beneath (in the main hotel). So when you step from your marble bath and wrap yourself in the thick lush heated towel, slip in to one of their robes, sip a great Italian red wine on your terrace overlooking the majestic view …..there is just nothing more relaxing!
From New York I sometimes go for long weekends. I fly overnight and arrive in the morning where a hotel driver meets my plane. Everything is just easy; it’s like arriving at your country club. Where ever you are departing from, Villa D’ Este is worth your while to visit.
The hotel’s restaurants are truly gourmet and the wine list incredible. Be sure to sign up for one of their cooking classes. Take in a massage at their spa. Enjoy the grandeur of the hotels sitting room and bar. Read a book by the fire in the living room just beyond the lobby. Check out the hotel shop where there are lovely designer items in case you neglected to pack something, or just want to look at the coffee table books about all the magnificent estates that line the shore of Lake Como. George Clooney is one of the hotel’s more high profile neighbors. Be sure to take a private boat out during the day to look around. There are even some restaurants on the lake that can be reached by boat for a gourmet dinner. There is plenty of great food, wine, and beauty. I give it a 10 as a romantic luxury get-a-way off season as well as an international hot spot in summer.