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Getaways: Il Sereno Lago di Como

The grandeur of Italy’s most famous lake sets the stage for one of its newest luxury resorts—Il Sereno Lago di Como

Written by Jenny Bradley Pfeffer

It’s a hotel that disappears into its environment—and simultaneously draws the eye.

Lake Como’s Il Sereno hotel, designed by Milan-based design master Patricia Urquiola, dovetails flawlessly with the rocky slopes descending to the halcyon lake while steadfastly standing apart from the classic, centuries-old architecture of neighboring villas.

Il Sereno’s 30 guest suites ensure that Lake Como is always on display. Each offers a terrace with sliding toulipier wood louvres that allow guests to control the amount of lake light—from deluge to dapple.

“We chose to create a space in harmony with the natural environment while creating a contemporary hotel with understated decor, a contrast to the classical designs that can be found around Lake Como,” Urquiola says.

Il Sereno’s natural surroundings were designer Patricia Urquiola’s strongest inspiration. “The color palette is the lake—green, light blue, copper, gray, and natural tones,” she says.

A contemporary spin on Como’s Casa del Fascio by rationalist architect Giuseppe Terragni, Il Sereno’s every facet—including architecture, wallcoverings, furnishings, and bath fixtures—was meticulously considered by Urquiola and her team. The acclaimed designer’s purview even extended to the hotel’s three Riva boats. 

Regional materials—pebbled Ceppo di Gré stone, travertine, and a jade-like striated Verde Laguna stone—are incorporated throughout the hotel. A floating walnut and copper staircase forms a sculptural centerpiece for the common areas. Vertical gardens and green sculpture by French botanist Patrick Blanc add dramatic flair.

“I wanted people to hear the stone, the water, and perceive the unique landscape in which they are immersed,” Urquiola says. “It all came very naturally.”

Dining is also an experience in itself. The Michelin-starred Ristorante Berton Al Lago (helmed by chef Andrea Berton) is housed at the foot of a theatrical staircase and serves the ultimate in local dishes—with a view of the ever-present lake, of course.


Il Sereno Lago di Como is located in Torno, Italy, just 4 miles from the city of Como. For additional details and rates, visit or e-mail