“When you write the story of two happy lovers, let the story be set on the banks of Lake Como.” Franz Liszt
Everyone once in their lifetime dreams and plans to have a glamour holiday in Lake Como. The reasons why this location is so famous and popular among celebrities and visited by travelers from all over the world have to be found from its origin.
First of all Lake Como is Europe’s deepest lake (410 meters at its deepest) and the third-largest on the continent, with a perimeter of 170km. It is fed by the icy waters of the Adda River.
Lake Como had residents from different parts of Europe dating back to its origin, but it became important and renown during the Roman occupation. When the Romans occupied the territory built Via Regina, that is still one of the two main roads running up the western shore of the Lake. Lake Como was an important trade route between the Po and the Rhine Valleys under Emperor Augustus.
Under the rule of Julius Caesar, in 49 BC, Como had 5,000 inhabitants and the lake was named Lake Larius, you can still find many guises along the lake with its original name. Know as Novum Comun, there were famous authors such as Pliny the Elder and Pliny the Younger that loved to stay there.
During the time Romans ruled the area, Como became very wealthy, the Goths and the Huns decided to take the territory under their control and imposed hefty taxes to the wealthier.
There were two invasions, after all, one from the Longobards that freed the city and another one by the Milanese in the 12th century, at that time two families took the power this area: the Visconti and the Sforza. They first built the Paderno Canal, a key connection between the lake and Milan.
Following the Visconti and the Sforza, Como had different crisis under the French and Spanish invasions but was back to flourish later under the Austrians. The famous Duomo designed by Fontana was constructed during this period and the world-famous physicist Alessandro Volta was born in Como in 1745.
1859 was the year when Lake Como was united to Italy under the House of Savoy. That was the time when this area finally had a period of peace and prosperity. The area became world-renowned by the silk manufacturing. That is when large villas were built and where the wealthier spent their summer holidays, it became where the Milanese had their glamour holidays in Lake Como.
Some of the villas built during those years now are really famous and are visited by thousands of visitors every year to name the most famous: Villa Balbianello, built in 1787 by Cardinal Angelo Durini (setting for the movies Star Wars and James Bond), Villa Carlotta in Tremezzo and Villa Melzi in Bellagio, Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio and Villa Monastero in Varenna. The spectacular scenery that this Lake offers attracted artists such as Byron, Wordsworth, and Shelley. Famous artists like Liz and Verdi were also inspired by the lake. Nowadays the Lake is chosen by the artist as the place where to get inspiration.
So after giving you a short story of the Lake and telling you some of the reasons why it became so famous, what is the secret side of the Lake Como? The glamour holidays in Lake Como that travelers have, is due to the most spectacular landscapes on the planet and of course the elegance that the villas built in the 1800 and the Roman’s presence before that. From multi-millionaire wedding celebrations to the vacations of celebrities from all over the world, Lake Como is among the most famous places to experience. If in the earlier years we saw Byron, Verdi, Shelley coming to the Lake, now George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Robert de Niro, Angelina Jolie, Matt Damon, Richard Branson, John Legend just to name a few come often to enjoy a relaxing vacation in the Lake.
From the spectacular views of the meandering water through the mountains and the picturesque villages nestled along the coastline, Lake Como has a story to tell you from each part you look. The proximity to the fashion and cultural capital Milan gives more of the cosmopolitan atmosphere. What you find in Lake Como is a lifestyle that you can also enjoy on the water. It’s unbeatable to have breakfast on a large terrace overlooking the lake or have a private boat taking you to Bellagio for an afternoon stroll, or have an aperitif in Menaggio on the other shore. Staying at Lake Como you can feel and live the enchanting lifestyle also because you can enjoy the stay sleeping in a luxury villa or hotel which was built back in the days, that even after renovations, preserved the design and style that used to be during the golden days.
Lake of Como
by William Wordsworth
And, Como! thou, a treasure whom the earth
Keeps to herself, confined as in a depth
Of Abyssinian privacy. I spake
Of thee, thy chestnut woods, and garden plots
Of Indian-corn tended by dark-eyed maids;
Thy lofty steeps, and pathways roofed with vines,
Winding from house to house, from town to town,
Sole link that binds them to each other ; walks,
League after league, and cloistral avenues,
Where silence dwells if music be not there:
While yet a youth undisciplined in verse,
Through fond ambition of that hour, I strove
To chant your praise ; nor can approach you now
Ungreeted by- a more melodious song,
Where tones of nature smoothed by learned art
May flow in lasting current. Like a breeze
Or sunbeam over your domain I passed
In motion without pause; but ye have left
Your beauty with me, a serene accord
Of forms and colors, passive, yet endowed
In their subinissivencss with power as sweet
And gracious, almost might I dare to say,
As virtue is, or goodness; sweet as love,
Or the remembrance of a generous deed,
Or mildest visitation of pure thought,
When God, the giver of all joy, is thanked
Religiously, in silent blessedness;
Sweet as this last herself, for such it is.