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Italian B&B That’s Genuinely Palatial

May 20, 2017 Destination Feature, Headline News No Comments Email Email

GUARANTEED to grab the attention when you’re talking of your holiday in Europe is to toss in about your stay in a palace in Italy.

And to mention that your palace sat alongside postcard Lake Como, with your genuinely palatial suite having begun life as a one-time flag-tower from which ancient guards looked out for enemy troops during Italy’s war with the French some five centuries before…

Plus how you of course took a glass or three of wine – sorry, vino – each evening in a bar that had been built into your palace back in the 1700s, and which like so much of the place has been now restored to how it all was in its heyday those five hundred or more years ago.

Our palace is the Palazzo Del Vice Re Lezzeno (it means the Palace of the Deputy King in Lezzeno,) and is now a luxurious boutique B&B with just five spacious guest suites that combine the charm of yesteryear, with the creature comforts of 21st century today.

LUXURIOUS breakfasts like this make for a great start to the day.

Just when the once-aristocratic residence had been abandoned by its royal occupiers is not clear, although it is known that it lay empty and rundown for many decades before being acquired by the Pertusini family around the end of the 18th century.

They lived there until 1963 when it was virtually abandoned again apart for occasional holiday use – and at one stage great-grandfather Pertusini running a restaurant in the building that he called Trattoria Delle Colonne after the two stone columns at the palace’s entrance… and even making his own wine there for his diners.

DELIGHTFUL Palazzo Del Vice Re Lezzeno boutique B&B overlooking Lake Como combines the charm of yesteryear, with the creature comforts of today.

Then around seventeen years ago, 29-year old architect Cristiano Pertusini let it be known that he and his family planned to restore their rundown one-time palace, and to turn it into the grandest of boutique B&Bs. But rather than being received with excitement and “Bravos” amongst locals, his announcement had many of them chortling “that Cristiano, you know, he’s crazy.”

But today it’s the Pertusini family can do the chortling, for their Palazzo Del Vice Re Lezzeno attracts guests from as far afield as England, America, and Australia too, guests who happily pay Euros330 a night for a luxury suite, that price including Wifi, taxes and the most magnificent of gastronomic Continental breakfasts featuring fresh-squeezed juices, cereals, freshest of pastries, fruits and so much more…

AND just five spacious suites await at the end of a day’s Lake Como sightseeing.

And in what an ambience do they find themselves. For after a night in their vast suite with its mix of the past with its grand antiques, wood-beamed ceilings and by contrast today’s mod cons, that gastronomic Continental breakfast is offered either outdoors in a delightful courtyard overlooking Lake Como, or under a domed ceiling featuring a fresco of  the Roman Goddess Juno and the strong and courageous Hercules together on a cloud.

The remarkable fresco had actually been painted over, and Cristiano engaged two students from the Brera Academy of fine arts in Milan to spend weeks patiently clearing away that paint to reveal the magnificent and priceless fresco.

WONDERFUL view of Lake Como from Palazzo Del Vice Re Lezzono.

And then there is the bar that dates back to the 1700/1800s and which has also been conserved as it was originally, with its decorative art works depicting floral motives and contrasting grotesque dragons. A wonderful place to take a pre-dinner drink before heading off for dinner at a nearby restaurant on foot, by bus or by taking the ferry across to Como township.

Those buses and ferries will also get you to so many other picturesque hamlets and places of interest – or grab one of the bicycles the Palazzo has available for guests seeking perhaps a bit of exercise, or the chance to personally explore wider afield.

AND local picturesque boutique shopping is a must-do.

And no matter what you have an interest in, the staff here are absolutely unbelievable in their enthusiasm (and knowledge) to ensure you see the very best of their region, or if you want to sit down with them for a chat about the history and culture of this most charming part of Italy.

So friendly and enthusiastic in fact are they, that you’ll quickly find yourself feeling you are being welcomed into becoming part of the Pertusini family!

And like all others before you, you’ll be promising both them and yourselves, that you will be back…

Written by David Ellis

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