VILLA BALBIANELLO
Tremezzina, Lake Como

Villa del Balbianello will leave you breathless, thanks to its beautiful terraced gardens and picturesque structure.

Located on the tip of the promontory of Lavedo, in Lenno (a hamlet of Tremezzina), the villa offers breathtaking views of Isola Comacina and the western shore of Lake Como

The villa is now a venue for private events such as weddings, ceremonies and even film or photographic sets (this is where scenes from Star Wars: Attack of the Clones and Casino Royale were filmed).

It is therefore not possible to sleep in the villa, but if you are looking for accommodation nearby… check out the best places to sleep near the villa!

❗Note: I do not run Villa Balbianello, as many who contact me think, but here I provide you with a lot of information to plan your visit. Enjoy your trip!

Villa Balbianello, Lake Como
Villa Balbianello (picture: fondoambiente.it)

Discover Villa Balbianello

In a nutshell

KEY FEATURES of Villa Balbianello

Loggia Durini, Villa Balbianello, Lake Como Italy
Loggia Durini, Villa Balbianello

The whole complex consists of two residential buildings, a church, and a portico (known as Loggia Durini) that can host weddings and events in a truly unique setting.

But the special feature of Villa Balbianello is above all the vast garden that surrounds the dwellings, with magnificent holm oaks pruned into an umbrella shape so as to offer a splendid view of Lake Como from inside the villa.

The villa’s interior, accessible only by guided tour, houses some English and French furnishings which date back to the 17th and 18th centuries and are a valuable legacy of the complex’s former owners (read the history of Villa Balbianello if you want to learn more).

The villa also houses numerous paintings on glass and a rich collection of sculptures and ethnic artifacts.

Many of these works are a legacy of Guido Monzino, former owner of the villa and leader of the first Italian expedition to Mount Everest.

There are many photos, flags and honors of the famous Italian explorer, as well as one of the eight sleds he used to reach the North Pole.

The movies: Star Wars & more

Skywalker & Padmé Amidala’s kiss

Gardens of Villa Balbianello, Lake Como
Setting of the famous Star Wars scene

Villa del Balbianello has been used as the setting for several movies. Here is where to spot the most famous ones.

Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones

The kissing scene between Anakin Skywalker and Padmé Amidala, probably the most famous scene filmed at Villa Balbianello, takes place in the garden that can be reached from the pathway that starts to the left of the Loggia Durini.

James Bond at Villa Balbianello

A Month by the Lake, Villa Balbianello
A Month by the Lake

Casino Royale

007 has also been a guest at Villa Balbianello. Very famous is the Casino Royal’s scene in which James Bond rests with Vesper Lynd, played by actress Eva Green, whom he kisses right under the Loggia Durini.
 

A Month by the Lake

The Loggia Durini hosted also some scenes from A Month at the Lake, a 1995 romantic film that also stars Uma Thurman in the cast.

OPENING TIMES, ENTRY PRICES & more

Open from mid-March to the end of November (please check on Google or on the official website). Special openings even in December.

Opening times: 10am - 6pm (last admission to visit the park is at 5pm).

Closed on Mondays and Wednesdays (except on holidays).

Note: booking at least 24 hours before the visit is strongly recommended.

  • Garden only: €12 (6-18 years old kids: €9)
  • Whole property (garden + villa): €23 (6-18 years old kids: €15)

See a full list on the official website

45 minute guided tours for groups of up to 10 people are available by reservation (please contact this mail address for more info).

Address: Via Guido Monzino 1, Tremezzina
Phone: +39 0344 56110
E-mail: faibalbianello@fondoambiente.it

Start planning your holidays!

A few tips for your stay on Lake Como

HOW TO GET to Villa Balbianello

The unique location of Villa Balbianello allows visitors to get there only by foot (by taking an easy 1 km uphill path from Via degli Artigiani) or by a taxiboat that leaves from the Lenno beach (€8 for the roundtrip). Either way, you can reach Lenno from the other lake towns by boat or by the C10 bus.

Start of the footpath to Villa Balbianello
Start of the footpath to Villa Balbianello
Stays & experiences

Experiences & tours

Make your trip a unique experience!​

4h tour on a Venetian Limo with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Venetian Limo with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Vaporina with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Vaporina with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Riva Super Florida with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Riva SuperFlorida with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Riva Ariston with visit to Villa Balbianello
4h tour on a Riva Ariston with visit to Villa Balbianello

HISTORY of Villa Balbianello

Villa Balbianello, Lake Como

Villa del Balbianello was built at the end of the 18th century by Cardinal Angelo Maria Durini, on the site of an ancient Franciscan monastery. In the 19th century, after the cardinal’s death, the villa became property of Count Luigi Porro Lambertenghi, his grandson.

Afterward, Villa Balbianello was purchased by Marquis Giuseppe Arconati Visconti, who hosted some great intellectuals such as Alessandro ManzoniGiovanni Berchet, and Giuseppe Giusti. Gianmartino Arconati Visconti, Giuseppe’s son, made some improvements to the villa’s gardens and loggia, but the decline of the noble family eventually led to a state of neglect. 

In 1919, Villa del Balbianello was purchased by Butler Ames, an American soldier and businessman, who restored the villa to its original splendor.

Later, in 1974, his heirs gave it to the famous entrepreneur and explorer Guido Monzino. He embellished the villa with a rich collection of artifacts that he acquired during his expeditions. In 1988, Monzino died without issue and donated Villa del Balbianello to FAI (Fondo per l’Ambiente Italiano).

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