Travel: Lake Como

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Be an A-lister, feel like royalty or simply enjoy Lake Como for what it has to offer. Be enchanted in lesser known villages and regions during MIlan Expo 2015

One of the most romantic lakes in the world, Lake Como attracts some of the most prestigious celebrities and royal families during the Summer. The winter is definitely less crowded but equally beautiful with small villages and towns to visit around Como. With the exciting and much anticipated Milan Expo 2015 kick-starting in May for 6 months, break away from the hustle and bustle in shopping-mecca Milan and travel 45 minutes by train or car to Lake Como for a breath of fresh air.
Good old Italian hospitality can be found all around Lake Como and comes as a highly recommended hub for those wanting to see the Expo, yet can’t find a cheap room in the city. 

There are so many fascinating restaurants and chefs to visit during your Lake Como visit, so be sure to take the time to just wander around the Lake and enjoy Italian cuisine at it’s best in Northern Italy.
Playground for the wealthy
There are a wealth of resorts and hotels in Lake Como to suit any budget, but for me, the best luxury accommodation would have to be Villa D’Este. 
A former residence of a very rich man, tourists have been lucky enough to move in, if only as a guest since 1873.
The rooms, service and style of the Villa have been recently renovated and regularly offer guests opulent luxury at it’s best. Apparently TomKat wanted to rent out the entire resort for their short-lasting nuptuals but the Villa respectively declined. Class speaks for itself. 
With over 7 restaurants to choose from, my favourite being Vernada where Chef Michele Zambanini puts together traditional Northern Italian dishes with a flair of modern accents, tasting Italy. For a delicious sample of Chef Michele’s talent, click here.
The rooms, suites and private villas are delightfully luxurious, so much so that The Terminator regularly visits with friends and family to chill by the floating pool.
The Eco-traveler
It’s easy to be a ‘green’ traveler when in Lake Como without sacrificing on life’s little luxuries. My favourite find, despite a 30 minute drive deep into the woods outside of Lake Como is well worth the bumping road to get there. Relatively new to the accommodations scene in Lake Como, Il Corazziere is officially the first rural resort. With more than 4 generations establishing this ‘green’ hotel / resort for tourists to enjoy, the modern furnishings are perfect for guests who live the high life yet still want to enjoy the Italian lifestyle and culture. 
According to owner Andrea Camesasca, they produce 40% of used energy by solar paneling systems and idro turbine to make your stay sustainable.
The restaurant follows the same mantra with all produce from the families own organic vegetable garden. Even the beer is homemade. Try the family beer risotto 
Image: Truffle Risotto

An Italian Village
Tourists may flock to Bellagio for silk ties and other fun touristy things, but if you want a real Italian Village experience, visit my favourite Gravedona.
The only word to describe Gravedona is enchanting. The lovely people of the town are inviting, warm and friendly – the very essence of Italian hospitality all tied together in one little town. 
There are many things to experience and do when in Gravedona, but be sure to book yourself a table at a local restaurant, Ristorante Ca De Matt where husband and wife duo make the most of local produce like Perche fillets from the Lake to make some delicious home-style foods to entice locals and tourists alike.
I dream of finding little food shops and highly recommend making a detour to Azienda Agricola Corrado Pradella for some of the regions BEST cured meats and cheese.
For honey lovers, ask locals for Riccardo Gramatica, he may just let you into his house for his artisan honey.
Image: Italian specialties

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