Lake Como, Itlay
Villa Mosaico is one of Italy’s national monuments. It was built in the 1700s by a famous count, who was granted the property by a northern papal family. The house was designed to have a simple, symmetrical facade, with a richly elaborate interior. The floors are a beautiful mixture of cotto and dark antique wood. The interiors are filled with beautiful paintings, sculptures, rugs, tapestries and Venetian chandeliers. The two spacious kitchens are fully equipped, including subzero refrigerators, wine coolers and countertops made of Verona marble. The most prominent features of the kitchens are two original, eight-foot-high stone fireplaces that bear the original family’s emblem.
The dining room of the finest of the Lakes District villas is oval shaped, with 16 marble columns. It features a fresco by Andrea Appiani, Europe’s foremost neoclassical artist at the turn of the 19th century. The Tuscan dining room is more casual, with period furniture and a separate sitting area with marble fireplace and TV. On the ground floor is a living room and study, with computers and Internet connections. A billiards room has a hand-carved English snooker table. A home theater features a large-screen TV and surround-sound system, as well one of the villa’s most incredible fireplaces. On the first floor of the villa is a beautiful workout room. The villa includes 11 bedrooms (three on the first floor and eight on the second), including eight with high, carved ceilings, antique floors and spectacular bathrooms. Some of the bathrooms have Philippe Starck-designed wash basins, bathtubs and showers, while others have large, antique French and English trough bathtubs and ornate wash basins. There are two beautiful pianos in the villa, including a perfectly restored antique Bluethner that once sat in the Leipzig Concert Hall. Villa Mosaico is child friendly. A wonderful outdoor play area with a beautiful wooden slide, swing set and rope climb are found in the back garden. There is also a large children’s playroom on the first floor and a small playroom next to the kitchen.
While Villa Mosaico can sleep 22, a further 11 visitors can be accommodated in the guest house, Villa Pesca. This is a 4,000-square-foot property, made of Moltrasio stone and wood, that sits overlooking Lake Como. All six of its bedrooms have lake views. There are three bedrooms with queen-sized beds, one bedroom with two twin beds, one bedroom with a European double bed, and one with a single bed. Villa Pesca is decorated with fine antiques and elegant Italian designer furniture. Four of the bedrooms have beautiful en suite bathrooms. The kitchen is large and modern, with every imaginable amenity. As well, Villa Pesca includes cable TV, mobile and fixed telephony with a computer and broadband Internet connection, a stereo and two beautiful fireplaces. The gardens of this most spectacular of Italy villas are considered some of the most historic and beautiful on Lake Como. Villa Mosaico’s swimming terrace is spectacular, containing lemon and olive trees, and a 200-year-old greenhouse. Overlooking the swimming pool is Sant Agata’s 12th-century bell tower. The property boasts 11 working fountains. A beautiful private dock area is has two boats available for rent. All utilities and daily housekeeping service are included in the rental.