2 Nights Lugano – Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More

Hi Everyone,

Lugano is a place with very special memories for me. The first time I came here was on business pretty soon after moving to Switzerland. The company I was working for at the time put us all up here in the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola. The hotel left a huge impression on me!

Many years later I took my daughter to the very same hotel. We had so much fun together hiding and photographing each other in the wardrobe (it is true), and playing board games in the pretty reception area  until 11pm at night!

Just last week I visited for the third time – this time with my Mum. The magic remains! This post gives you a pretty pictorial insight into the hotel as well as a little preview of what we got up to.

Keep reading for more about “2 nights Lugano – Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and more”.


2 Nights Lugano – Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More


All about Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola:

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More

This is the majestic view that meets you as you first see the hotel from outside…

From the hotel itself the view over the park onto the lake is simply stunning.

Over 130 years of History

Love the story behind this hotel. Originally built for a Russian noble family in 1880. It was then a stand alone villa almost in the middle of nowhere. A Swiss family then bought it in 1885 and already turned it into a hotel at that point in time. Almost 100 years later in 1982 it was sold to a local family. The family totally renovated and added a new wing turning the property into the beautiful 5 star grand hotel it is today.

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and MoreThe communal spaces are designed in such a way that you really feel at home. They make you want to find your favourite spot and simply stay there for a drink or to read and relax. The current owners are also very passionate about art. Hence fabulous pieces of art are dotted around the hotel in a very understated manor.

Spot the 17th century Gobelin d’Aubusson tapestries in the Salone Camino pictured above.

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More

One of our favourite rooms was this yellow and purple room with all the lovely paintings and interesting coffee table books to browse through.



Super interesting to note is that over the years the number of rooms has decreased as in many cases what was once 2 rooms has now been converted into one.

Our room was exactly such an example – my favourite bit though was the balcony with a choice of places to sit relax and swallow up the view.

Each room has it’s own individual decor and the hotel is constantly being refurbished to ensure the utmost standard is kept at all times.

We loved the variety of wallpapers and furnishings. I would have been quite happy spending days simply examining the rooms and getting ideas for home.

Example of a standard room in the new building.

Example of a junior suite.



There are three restaurants and a bar.

The first night we ate at La Rucola which has the motto of being fresh and easy dining. Open all day from 11:30am till 10:30 pm. Have a look at what we ate plus a sneak peek into the kitchen

Second evening started with apero at the restaurant Gallery Art al Lago. The 1 Michelin Star, 16 points GautMillau restaurant which is perched across the road from the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola right along the waters edge.

The restaurant doubles up as an art gallery with artwork and sculptures of contemporary artists with international standing that change every 6 months.

Followed by dinner at the restaurant Le Relais which has 14 points GaultMilau and the most wonderful terrace overlooking the park and lake Lugano.

Here you see what we ate night 2:

I do have to show you some images from inside too…

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and More

Wellness / Swimming

There is a lovely indoor/outdoor beauty spa area perfect to enjoy all year round.

Plus a private beach club across the road right on the lake with stand up paddles and canoes to use if you want to:


What to do outside the hotel:
Shopping in Lugano

As a part of the room price you also get the Lugano travel card so you have free bus access. Central Lugano is a short walk or a couple of stops with the bus. I love going along and checking out the shops. Another special memory for me as I bought my wedding dress in Lugano (over 21 years ago now)…


Lugano Boats

Right across from the hotel you’ll find both a private taxi stand as well as the public boat stop. My favourite trip is to the cliffside village of Gandria. You might also like to take a boat trip into Italy…

For the Boat timetable see here


Gandria and Olive Grove Trail

Gandria is a little cliffside village close to the border of Italy that has basically remained unchanged for the past 100 years. First known for olive oil until a hard winter in 1709 killed most of the olive trees. Due to the difficulty of controlling the border area around Gandria it became infamous for smuggling. Cigarettes, meat and alcohol were especially profitable due to high Swiss customs duties.

Now it remains a cute village to visit – have some fresh fish and a Prosecco for lunch and discover the few but pretty artisan shops dotted throughout the village.

2 Nights Lugano - Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and MoreI recommend taking the boat there and then walking back to Lugano via the Olive Grove Trail. En route you can stop off at the locals favourite summer party and beach spot: Lido San Domenico.



Thank you so much for having us, we left feeling totally relaxed and continue to dream about our wonderful time at the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola

For Bookings contact:

Viale Castagnola 31, 6906 Lugano, Switzerland

Phone +41 91 973 25 55



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note: all photos taken by FunkyForty GmbH

Written in collaboration with the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola.  All opinions are my own.

62 Persons think this post is funky

Hi! I’m Yvonne, a 40 something (wink) Kiwi, living in Zurich. I love fashion, travel, shopping and food – believing chocolate will cure almost anything!

  1. I can highly recommend to stay at least two nights it is such a beautiful and also romantic place love also the view it has over the lake

  2. What an amazing and magical place Yvonne. May I one day be ever so blessed to stay here too.

    You and your Mum are just beautiful ❤️❤️❤️

  3. What a wonderful post! You really do Lugano and Gandria justice with your beautiful photos! Lugano is a fantastic place! I just love it! Last time we went over to Locarno and up the Comologno valley by bus! “And now for something completely different!” We had no idea such a stunning place existed in Switzerland! It was a different world! We ended up staying in a historical palazzo and eating in the local cantina. It was magical!

  4. Ahaha! I know this hotel! It is beautiful, right below the Monte Bre little varnicular train! My husband and I were looking through the gate and they kindly invited us in to admire the garden! We are definitely staying there next time! They also have some smaller, less expensive rooms which is good because the Swiss franc is killing the smaller currencies. I can’t wait to try the restaurants!

  5. Just one question, which I’m not sure is appropriate for an ‘influencer’, I love what your Mum is wearing and I was wondering if you could say where she found her outfits? Also, I will be taking my 93 year old Mum from Zurich Oberländer shopping for something suitable for her grandsons wedding at St Moritz in late October. Shoes, we have, plenty of options, but do you have any ideas for a dress? I am having enough trouble working out what I could wear but Mum is very hard. Thank you so much!

    1. Hello Dear,

      My Mums striped dress is from Laura Ashley, the other dresses the red dress is from David Lawrence.
      I can help you shop for both you and your Mum in Zurich… plenty of options for all budgets:-)
      Let me know if you would like this. I would suggest to look later this month already.

      Have a wonderful day,

  6. Thank you for your response! I didn’t know you were a personal shopper too! I am overseas until later in the year so I have to see what we get organized travel wise but my sister-in-law may also be interested! St Moritz sounds fancy but they just come from that area.

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