Like a grande dame draped in pearls and floating through an historic Italian villa in a cloud of Chanel N°5, Lake Como has an old-school, beguiling charm that has lured the likes of George Clooney and Donatella Versace to its steep shores.
This Y-shaped lake in the Lombardy region of northern Italy spans 56 square miles, so it’s an ideal place to carve out some privacy. And what a place to disappear in, with the jagged, snow-capped peaks of the Italian Alps looming above the vast expanse of glassy water.
Close to the water’s edge, elegant houses painted sienna, yellow and ochre cluster on the shore; dotted among them the luxurious villas in which many aspire to holiday – grand, pillared buildings draped in wisteria that date back hundreds of years.
It is this setting that makes the minimalist monolith that is the Il Sereno such a surprise. The hotel, built on the lake’s southeastern shore in the village of Torno, opened in March this year and is a radical departure from Como’s traditional aesthetic.