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:
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.
The 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.
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.
I do have to show you some images from inside too…
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)…
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…
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.
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.55 Persons think this post is funky