A week in Bellagio

Jul 12th, 2005, 01:11 PM
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A week in Bellagio

Last month we spent a week in Bellagio. We took the train from Milan to Varenna and then down the hill to the first boat to Bellagio which happened to be a ferry.

It was at the beginning of the heat wave and our hotel, Hotel Florence, did not have air conditioning. We had a fan which helped somewhat.

Our room #24 was large and very nice with a window on two sides and a wrap around balcony. Number 26 was an equally nice room.

We bought a six day boat pass at 55.50€ apiece and we were on a boat every day as a way to keep cool. We got our moneyís worth and it was nice not to have to stand in line for tickets each time.

Bellagio was a bit crowded with day trippers but the evenings were quieter. We were happy that we chose Bellagio over the other towns on Lake Como. We went to Varenna a couple of times and just didnít see the charm. We did have a lovely lunch on the terrace of the Hotel du Lac in Varenna.

We really enjoyed the boat ride to the top end of the lake. The water is much choppier and there were a lot of windsurfers and sailboats on the lake. At Colico one has time for a gelato and/ or a drink and then get back on the boat for the return trip. Thatís all the time needed in Colico.

We went to Como twice, once on Saturday market day. We took the hydrofoil back for an additionall 3€ supplement which was worth it because otherwise it is a long boat ride.

We visited Villa Carlotta and in Bellagio the gardens of the Villa Melzi which were uncrowded and very well kept. The entrance fee is 5€ and is good for the entire day.

We had lunch at the Hotel Belevedere which is very nice but a hike up the hill. We went back another night for dinner. It was the best and most expensive meal that we had in Bellagio.

We ate at Bilacus twice, liking it better the first time than the second due to the choices we made. We ate at Trattoria S. Giacomo twice and liked the food and the friendly servers. We also ate at La Punta twice. It also has good food and a nice setting. We did not eat dinner at our hotel because the menu didnít appeal to us but it stayed quite busy so Iím sure it was good.

Bellagio has a laundromat which will wash and fold for 5.50€ per kilo.

A travel agent will book train tickets as Varenna is an unmanned station. We used the one around the corner from the Hotel Florence. It is open only from 8:30-10:00 AM. There is no cost for this service.

We enjoyed our stay in Bellagio very much.


Judi is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 01:28 PM
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Nice and highly useful report. Lake Como gets a lot of play on this board but mostly people trying to decide which hotel to select. Not as much info ever comes about what to do, where to eat, etc. Thanks.
JulieVikmanis is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 01:53 PM
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Yes, good report. And very interesting about the laundromat. We looked all over without success and our hotel Du Lac told us there was no such thing in Bellagio.

Did you wheel your luggage from the train down to the boat in Varenna? How about returning? Wheel it uphill?
Patrick is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 01:54 PM
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Hello Judi, thank you for sharing your week at Lake Como. I know your trip report will be of interest to many travellers as there is so many questions regarding Lake Como.

Your week sounds like paradise!! Wish I was there.
LoveItaly is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 03:38 PM
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Thanks for your kind words. I hoped to be helpful.

Patrick, we just happened to see the laundromat on our way to La Punta restaurant. It is up the street that runs between the Hotels Florence and Serbelloni.

We are light packers ( 20 pounds or so) and it was easy to wheel our luggage downhill. We could have done the reverse but chose to call a taxi from the little cafe where we stopped for juice. It cost 7€ for a two minute ride. I guess she could charge whatever she wanted as taxis were scarce.
Judi is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 03:53 PM
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Nice report. I stayed in room 23 when I was at the Florence; I remember the nice views that number 24 had.
Two questions: what was on the Belvedere menu that you liked that wasn't on the Florence menu? I ate at the Florence restaurant (on the terrace by the lake) and thought it was better than Bilacus.
Second, do you remember where the laundromat was? Or its name?
Thanks! Glad you had a great time!
BTilke is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 03:57 PM
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Thank you, Judi. This was both interesting and useful as we will be *somewhere* on Lake Como in October. What a difficult place to make decisions. Everytime I read something, I want to do THAT.
I especially appreciated the info about the restaurants and the transportation details.
Carol
Brahmama is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 04:34 PM
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Interesting report! Judi, taxis are more expensive when they are going uphill.

Catbert is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 05:29 PM
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Yes, I know that is true, Catbert! -

BTilke, I remember that we had pasta and fish and that the presentation was very nice. We liked the ambience of the Belvedere restaurant and we also had a rather expensive bottle of wine.

We did have a nice lunch at the Florence and I am sorry now that we didn't try it for dinner. After eating breakfast there for seven days we just didn't want anything else from that kitchen.

We would often sit outside of the hotel for drinks and people watching and it was especially fun to watch the servers dart across the street from the outdoor restaurant to the kitchen.
Judi is offline  
Jul 12th, 2005, 06:26 PM
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Good stuff Judi---glad you liked Lago Como--hard not to.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Jul 13th, 2005, 05:33 AM
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Topping for anyone who missed this yesterday.
Catbert is offline  
Jul 13th, 2005, 05:38 AM
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Sounds like a lovely visit, Judi. Thanks for the great report.
Statia is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2005, 04:37 PM
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For the recent posters asking about Bellagio here is my web site with some photos. There are also a few photos of Santa Margherita Ligure where we spent five nights after our week in Bellagio.

http://homepage.mac.com/pj2592/PhotoAlbum54.html
Judi is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2005, 07:52 PM
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Thanks for the report and the beautiful pictures. My daughter and I are staying at the Hotel Florence in the middle of September. Hopefully, it won't be that hot.

Has anyone eaten at the Serbelloni next door? A friend recommended one of their restaurants highly.
nance619 is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 12:53 AM
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Thanks for the interestinga nd useful report, Judi. Bellagio is somewhere I am thinking of going after reading an earlier report. Did you go to the beach at all ?
caroline_edinburgh is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 08:03 AM
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Your report makes Lake Como sound so lovely. It has long been on my 'future' list. Since over the years many of the pictures one sees of Lake Como show the terrace at Villa d'Este, have Fodorites gone there for a drink, a lunch, or a walkaround?
hopingtotravel is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 08:20 AM
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You can catch scenes of Lake Como on the new Gwen Stefani video, Cool. It was filmed there a few months ago.
BTilke is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 01:18 PM
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I had my best meal in all of Italy in Bellagio, and I don't think anyone could imagine where it happened. If some of you are interested, I'll explain.
Waldo is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 01:31 PM
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Re Patrick's question <Did you wheel your luggage from the train down to the boat in Varenna? How about returning? Wheel it uphill?>

Hub and I wheeled our bags and duffles back up the hill to the train. Took just less than 10 minutes and was not strenuous. We are approaching our 60's and in B+ health. Hope that helps.

donco is offline  
Aug 4th, 2005, 02:30 PM
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Thank you for the wonderful trip report, Judi.

Just saw the "Cool" video BTilke mentioned. I thought the setting looked familiar!

Waldo - I'd love to hear what happened.

We also had our most expensive (due to wine) Bellagio meal at Hotel Belvedere back in May. We thought it better than Bilacus, but not as good as La Punta. We ate off the fixed price menu (32 euro). I had orrechiette w/broccoli, mixed salad, swordfish and tiramisu. Husband had crepes w/cheese, veal roast, mixed salad and panna cotta. Needless to say, we were stuffed!
hunnym is offline  

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