Just behind the hill of the promontory into the lake, protected from the winds, is the building complex of Villa Serbelloni. The villa dominates the town’s historic centre. It can be reached from Via Garibaldi. It was built in the fifteenth century in place of an old castle razed in 1375. Villa Serbelloni was later rebuilt several times. In 1788 it came into the possession of Alessandro Serbelloni (1745–1826) who enriched it with precious decorations and works of art of the 17th and 18th centuries.Today you can visit only the gardens. The trails, as well as the villa, lead to the remains of the 16th century Capuchin monastery and the Sfondrata, a residence built by the Sfondrati family indeed, overlooking the Lecco branch of the lake.
The villa has hosted many illustrious figures: Leonardo da Vinici, Emperor Maximillian I, Silvio Pellico, Queen Victoria, Manzoni and Parini, who spent a great deal of time here as a tutor to the Duke’s sons.
In 1905, the villa was transformed into a luxury hotel. In 1959 it became the property of the Rockefeller Foundation of New York at the bequest of the American-born Princess of Thurn and Taxis, who had bought it in 1930.
Since 1960 the Bellagio Center in the villa has been home to international conferences, often held by US scholars, housed in the former villa or in the grounds.
Open from April to early November.
For further information on opening times or entrance fees, please contact the following telephone number or visit www.bellagiolakecomo.com
Tel.: 031951555 – Promobellagio
Adults € 9,00
Groups (20 people): € 7,00
Schools and children under 13: € 5,00
Children under 7: free
Piazza della Chiesa 4 – Bellagio