Living on stylish Lake Como means you are not exactly alone. As the most famous and scenic of the lakes, it draws many visitors that jostle their way along the narrow roads that wind around the lake. Perhaps for this reason the owners of Serra selected a home somewhat higher that lakeshore and surrounded it with a buffer of greenery, thereby offering their family and holiday guests a peaceful retreat from which to admire the watery horizon seen from windows and terrace. While clearly a family home, the stone and stucco three-story house is thoughtfully furnished with everything necessary for a successful holiday - large luminous places in which to gather and cosy spots in which to retreat.
Though the gated entrance drive into the fenced property has access to the ground floor, following the natural rise of the garden around the house one arrives at a furnished glass extension that is an excellent venue for family meals. A door in the glasshouse leads directly into a large living room furnished with attractive sofas, a wood stove and doors out to a furnished terrace with lovely lake views. A short hallway leads to a very spacious newly renovated kitchen with a table for 8, a washing machine and up-to-date appliances. One flight of stairs leads down to the ground floor on which there is garden access, a twin/double bedroom and an adjacent bathroom, while another leads to sleeps accommodations on the upper floors. Midway to the first floor is a double bedroom with an elevated child's bed with cartooned figures overhead, and a few steps higher are two further bedrooms - a cosy bedroom with a French double bed and ensuite shower room and a twin bedroom, both with lake views - and a bathroom with Jacuzzi tub. One further shower room is located on the top floor. The 1000 m2 fenced garden surrounding the house has wide lawns that gently rise and fall; with a swing set, an above-ground pool large enough for cooling and splashing, and beautiful trees throughout, the garden is a child's paradise and an adult's pleasure.
Though surrounded in greenery and with the lake on the horizon, Serra is not isolated; in fact, it is in walking distance to lakefront villages that provide shops and restaurants as well as ancient fortresses. A short drive away is Menaggio with a beautifully positioned golf course and a dock whose ferry connects to the charming village of Varenna or Bellagio, the "pearl of the lake", often described as the prettiest village in Europe. From here it is easy to visit Villa Melzi with its ornamental gardens, or sail over to Comacina Island - the only island on the lake. With Serra on the same side of the lake as Como, it doesn't take long to reach its fashionable historical centre, perhaps to visit the fascinating Silk Museum, which honours the city's centuries-old livelihood, or take a funicular ride to Brunate - a hill-top town with magnificent views over the city, the lake and its surrounding mountains. For those in the group more interested in a bargain at ground level, stylish outlet shopping is just over the Swiss border. With the days easily filled, it will be a pleasure to return to the peaceful green of the garden and review it all with leisure....Read more
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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