Every time I look out of our hotel room at Bellagio, Italy I’m amazed at the beauty of the area. From our balcony we see a large expanse of blue lake, guarded by mountains across the water, and several small villages nestled along the shoreline.
|View of lakes from Punta Spartivento|
|Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni|
To see how the super-rich spend their vacations, we walk to the entrance of Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni, originally a private villa when it was built in 1852. Today the hotel is owned by the Rockefeller Foundation of New York.
|Beach at the Grand Villa|
|St. James Basilica attracts tourists|
Hungarian musician and composer Franz Liszt arrived in Bellagio in the summer of 1837 with his lover Madame d’Agoult. No one recognized him, and he appreciated the solitude—until a friend decided to sell one of Liszt’s compositions. After people realized he was here, his service improved noticeably. Liszt loved Lake Como and thought it a superb place for people in love.Mark Twain came with friends in 1867. A page of his book Innocents Abroad describes the hotel we’re staying in. He tells of days wandering, admiring the Alps, and of evenings playing billards, dining, and smoking on the porch overlooking the lake.
Right beside Hotel Metropole, where we're staying, is the “borgo,” Bellagio’s historic center and one of the first areas in the town to be inhabited and developed. The Tourist Office in Piazza Mazzini is located here, so you can easily book excursions including boat rides on the lake. Many shops, cafes, and galleries also cater to visitors.
|Gelateria in front of Hotel Metropole|
in the "borgo," or historic center of Bellagio
Bellagio is a great place to relax and recharge, especially with a favorite person. After just one night there, the spirit of the town captures our imaginations. It’s one of those rare places I could return to in a heartbeat.
Photos by Larry and Beverly Burmeier