Where to stay in Lake Como

Old Aug 12th, 2006, 02:27 PM
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Where to stay in Lake Como

For all Italy-experts fodorittes

I will be there for 2 days
1- Where is the best place/area to stay?
2- What would you recommend me doing on my 2 days there..I am going with my husband: we love landscapes, browsing around cute villas...
2- Can i get a train to Milan from tere?

Grazie.
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Old Aug 12th, 2006, 02:57 PM
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The best area to stay is in or near Bellagio. You can take a train from Milano to Varenna, and then take a 15 minute boat ride to Bellagio, or just stay in Varenna.

You can also take a train to the town of Como and take a boat to Bellagio, but it is much longer. (One hour at least.)

If you don't sleep in Bellagio, you should visit Bellagio to see the view.

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Old Aug 12th, 2006, 06:37 PM
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We stayed at the Hotel du Lac in Varenna. There are many Hotel du Lacs around Como and the lakes so if you are interested make sure you google the correct one. It was fantastic, right on the water's edge. Great views, very comfy rooms and everything you could ask for in a romantic getaway or other! Try and see the Villa Balbianello, sensational, also the Villa Carlotta and the gardens are well worth a look. Just riding around on the ferries looking at the villages from the water is another great way to see things. Good shopping in Bellagio, great restaurants in both Varenna and Bellagio. You will love it, have a great time.
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Old Aug 12th, 2006, 07:43 PM
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We just returned from there and it was all very beautiful. We stayed at the Hotel Belvedere in Bellagio and it was nice - just up from town, so no nighttime street noise. The Hotel Florence looked pretty. We strolled around Bellagio and twice took the ferries: to Varenna for dinner at Albergo Milano and to Tremezzo to see the Villa Carlotta. I reommend both. There are lots of really nice shops in Bellagio, lots of pretty things to buy. And yes, you can take the train to Milan from Varenna.
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Old Aug 13th, 2006, 12:41 PM
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How funny! We just returned from Hotel Belvedere too, and would highly recommend it, although steer clear of the dining room!

However, we were not as thrilled with Bellagio as the other poster. It was wall to wall tourists when we visited, and the shops and food, for the most part, were mediocre and overpriced.

We did find a lovely pizzeria ( AZZURA) while we were there, but unbelievably, that was the best food we had during our 3-night stay.

By the way, I don't know when you're planning on going, but if it's in the summer months, you should know that the Hotel Florence doesn't have AC in its rooms.
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Old Aug 18th, 2006, 02:44 PM
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Weadles.....Did Bellagio's tourism masses leave late in the day, and the evening crowds become tolerable? I was planning to stay in Bellagio, but will stay in Varenna if you say the crowds never thinned out as the day wore on. We will be visiting in mid-May. Thanks for your help.
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Old Aug 18th, 2006, 03:08 PM
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marthag,

I don't think mid-May will be as overrun with tourists as June-August, but I would still recommend staying in Varenna. Check the post "IS BELLAGIO OVERRUN WITH TOURISTS" for all the reasons why. I'm just not a huge fan! Varenna seemed like a much less frantic spot. Have a good trip!
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Old Aug 18th, 2006, 03:49 PM
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There is no doubt Varenna is a quieter spot, but beware that you may have problems with transport if you want to hve dinner elsewhere in the evening. I prefer Bellagio as I like a little more activity and more dining choices -- we've had several great meals in Bellagio -- at the Hotel Florence sitting outside on the water's edge, at Bilacus, at the Silvio just outside of town and at Antica Poggio (gee, is that the right name for a well?). I can't imagine anyone calling Bellagio "packed" after about 5 or 6 in the evenings. We often sat out by the water on a bench all by ourselves after 9 PM -- quiet as could be right in the center of Bellagio. But if you stay elsewhere and daytrip to Bellagio, then yes, you will find that you, like most others, will be adding to the daytripping mobs in Bellagio. I suggest you stay there, but leave during the day to visit the villas and other towns then return when the "mobs" are gone.
 
Old Aug 19th, 2006, 03:34 AM
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No, Weadles, Bellagio will not be over-run with tourists in mid-May. In fact, if you go during the week and not on the week-end, it will be calm and relaxed. You did NOT go there in May, why are you still trying to imply it will be "frantic" there? I WAS there in mid-May and it was absolutely delightful in all respects.
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Old Aug 19th, 2006, 06:08 AM
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Another endorsement of Varenna generally and the Hotel du Lac specifically. The hotel made our restaurant bookings for us too which is a good idea if you want in to something like the 6-table Il Cavatappi, which was wonderful.
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Old Aug 19th, 2006, 06:46 AM
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BTilke,

I wasn't trying to imply that Bellagio would be overrun with tourists in May. I think you misread what I wrote. When we were there, during the height of the tourist season, it was a very unappealing place. Hopefully, that's not true out of season.
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Old Aug 20th, 2006, 06:06 PM
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I would highly recommend Eremo Gaudio in Varenna. It may possibly have the best view and dining terrace on lake Como. Rates are reasonable and the hotel is almost Swiss like in it's simple charm. Varenna also provides easy access to Bellagio and Menaggio by ferry -- about 20 minutes. There is a train from Milan that takes you to Varenna. Hotel is about a 10-15 minute walk from the station, tho if u have a lot of luggage, you will want a cab. Let me know if you go and what you thought.
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 11:36 AM
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We are headed to Italy next May and our tour company has us scheduled to stay in Como when we are in the Lake Dist. Has anyone stayed in Como? We can still change our reservation, so I'm wondering if we should switch to Bellagio or Varenna. Any suggestions.
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 11:42 AM
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We're going next May and will have a car. From what I have been reading, Como is probably not the place to stay.

We're planning to stay in Menaggio where we can ferry to Bellagio and Varenna then use the car to drive around the lake.
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 12:08 PM
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Budman:
What made you decide on Menaggio?
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 12:57 PM
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I believe the ferries stop running early, and I wanted to be on that side of the lake. Basically I'll only have 3 nights/2 full days -- one to ferry and visit Bellagio and Varenna, then the other to visit Lugano and maybe drive some of the lake areas.
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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 02:32 PM
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I would not stay in Como. I never have, but I have never heard anything nice about it from a tourist's perspective. I stayed in Varenna and would highly recommend it, particularly hotel Eremo Gaudio.


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Old Aug 21st, 2006, 03:04 PM
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Of course your tour company has you in Como--it is cheaper.
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Old Aug 22nd, 2006, 07:54 AM
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1.Do not stay in Como
2.Most any of the options here are good.
3. I tend to favor Bellagio because it's wonderful at night
4. I've been there in June and Sept. and never felt that the crowds were all that bad.
5. Make your selection ,at least in part, on where you can stay.This is one place that I highly recommend a view and balcony.
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Old Aug 30th, 2006, 04:47 AM
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My husband and I just got back from Lake Como two days ago. We stayed at the Hotel Belvedere and loved it. We spent most of our days just riding the ferries and going from village to village. We did not like Varenna that much. We found a great place to stay in Tremezzo. Its a small hotel right on the lake and its called Lardensena. The rates were very reasonable and we found the rooms to be very nice.
The weather was beautiful during this time and the crowds were not bad at all.
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