Il Sereno Lago di Como Resort Review

Lake Como has lured me back again to its idyllic shores a handful of situations in excess of the many years. I’ve stayed in sleepy villages with almost nothing additional than a church and a bus halt, as well as in vacationer-preferred cities with glitzy retailers and dining establishments. I have gone on several a boat tour, stopping at historic web-sites this kind of as the famed Villa del Balbianello (a filming area for Star Wars and 007’s “Casino Royale”). I have experienced classic Italian meals highlighting ingredients and wines neighborhood to the space.

So I was taken by surprise when, on my most latest vacation, I bought to practical experience the lake in a complete new way.

Il Sereno Lago di Como, voted the ideal resort in Europe, the very best resort in Italy, and No. 4 lodge in the globe in Journey + Leisure‘s 2023 World’s Finest Awards, provides visitors just one knowledge that no other Como lodge does: self-driving a Riva motorboat on the lake.

Il Sereno Lago di Como

  • A modern resort on a lake complete of historic villas, Il Sereno manages to mix into its environment when supplying a keep that stands out.
  • The resort has two boats that company are ready to travel themselves, no tour information essential — an working experience you cannot find at any other assets on the lake.
  • The heart of the vacation resort is a heated, freshwater infinity pool, an very picturesque area to invest a day (or a couple).
  • The hotel’s Michelin-starred cafe serves three diverse tasting menus, as properly as an à la carte menu, so visitors in no way operate out of alternatives.

A Riva is the Ferrari of the boating world (the two brands are basically longtime associates, generally collaborating on speedboats). In 1822, Pietro Riva, the brand’s founder, was born on the shores of Lake Como in the town of Laglio. As Il Sereno’s web-site suggests of Riva, “There is no a person on the lake that superior understands the ebbs and flows of this sought-after desired destination.”

Quick ahead to August 2023, and I’m cruising up the lake with a mate in 1 of the hotel’s picket Riva Jetto’s. Our hair whipping in the wind, each now and then we would permit out an instinctive yell, fueled by the rush of gliding around the very physique of h2o we experienced been marveling at because we arrived. It was just us and the lake — no tour guide facilitating the journey, no driver selecting the route. I felt free of charge, immersed, present. (The bottle of Bollinger champagne we took on board might have played a component.)

Courtesy of Il Sereno

As we headed back again to shore (following providing ourselves “five far more minutes” a variety of situations), my pal had a momentary panic: “Wait, where’s the hotel?” It wasn’t that we were lost — we were being heading straight for the house — but the hotel has a way of blending into its environment, which is outstanding looking at it’s a seven-calendar year-outdated modern day building created of wooden, stone, and metallic on a lake full of historic villas that day again generations.

Il Sereno markets alone as the only contemporary hotel on the lake, that means it’s the only resort that was an totally new build, alternatively than becoming constructed into an current villa. Some locals instructed me they had been concerned it would be an eyesore, but were pleasantly shocked by the completed merchandise. That is mainly many thanks to Spanish architect Patricia Urquiola, who seamlessly blended modern design with the organic environment.

On a lake that has some of the most lavish resorts in the globe, Il Sereno has discovered a way to give guests an experience that stands out. Read through on for more about the greatest resort in Europe, as voted by T+L visitors.

Samantha Lauriello/Vacation + Leisure

The Rooms

Il Sereno has 40 suites, all with a check out of the h2o and a smooth, timeless design marked by dark woods and leather, caramel-coloured marble, brass finishings, and pops of orange and eco-friendly. You may well even detect an unforeseen iridescent end desk below and there — one particular of my favored facts.

Food items and Drink

The hotel has a selection of eating alternatives. Most notably, its Michelin-starred cafe, which chef Raffaele Lenzi suggests is a tribute to his “Italian spirit,” serving a few distinct tasting menus. Then you can find the Lobby Bar, with a terrace that may as nicely have been created for aperitivo. At last, a lunch cafe serves anything from salads to clean pasta, which guests can appreciate poolside or at a desk upcoming to the lake.

Courtesy of Il Sereno

Actions and Features

A Como nearby the moment advised me that you actually get to know the lake by expending time on the drinking water, and the lodge delivers a range of strategies to do just that. In addition to self-driving a Riva Jetto, you can also opt for a guided boat tour, either getting in the sights from the h2o or stopping to explore towns like Bellagio and Varenna.

If you’d relatively continue to be on land, the lodge has cooking courses and wine tastings, as very well as hiking excursions that will get you into the surrounding mountains. That is, if you can pull on your own away from the heated freshwater infinity pool. The pool — with sights of the lake and mountains, nearby towns and passing boats — is perhaps the most beautiful I’ve at any time seen.

Courtesy of Il Sereno

The Spa

Many Lake Como villas have aged dàrsenas, or boathouses hidden down below the constructing at h2o amount. Il Sereno’s Valmont spa, as properly as the 24-hour gymnasium, has been crafted into the dàrsena that was section of the primary assets. The remedy home for my massage looked straight into the boathouse and by a grand stone archway major out to the carefully lapping h2o. As well as, the spa is just off the pool, creating it straightforward to pop in for a quick massage or facial involving dips, which is precisely what I did.

Samantha Lauriello/Vacation + Leisure

Accessibility and Sustainability

On the lookout at the lodge deal with on, a single of the initial items to capture my eye was the greenery — just one vertical garden on the façade and another driving the setting up. Intended by French botanist Patrick Blanc and Italian landscape artist Flavio Pollano, the installations have practically 5,000 vegetation between them, and they are not just for present. Il Sereno was qualified by CasaClima, an Italian high-quality assurance company that acknowledges companies for electrical power-effective and sustainable construction.

The resort was also created to guarantee all frequent parts are wheelchair accessible, as properly as a single focused suite for visitors with mobility needs.

The Location

Location is a important element of any Lake Como remain, however it truly is often missed, as lots of vacationers never comprehend just how huge the lake is. It normally takes over an hour to travel from the southern tip to the northern tip, and the coastline is dotted with diverse cities, from the bustling town of Como to vacationer-beloved Bellagio to sleepy Torno.

Il Sereno is found in Torno, and as someone who’s often attempting to stay clear of the crowds, I believe it’s 1 of the finest places on the lake. The architecture is postcard-perfect, and there are a handful of area eating places, but you do not have to fear about weaving as a result of flocks of individuals. That stated, if you want to be a small wander from bars, eating places, and shops, this could possibly not be the place for you.

There is a ferry halt in Torno with services to Bellagio, Varenna, and other charming villages all over the lake, and the resort is just an hour’s drive from Milan-Malpensa Airport.