Destination weddings aren’t just about Thailand and Dubai anymore. With Anushka Sharma’s subtle do at the heritage hotel, Borgo Finocchieto in Tuscany; Deepika’s mega extravaganza at Villa del Balbianello at Lake Como in Italy; and Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal’s engagement at Villa d’Este, again at Lake Como, Italy is undoubtedly turning out to be the destination weddings location of the season. Especially Lake Como, the swoon-worthy spot with its luxe resort hotels, natural elegance and glamorous lifestyles. And the proof is in the hashtag: Just type #lakecomowedding and your Instagram will burst into a million images of beauty. That is, once you get past the #Deepveer pictures. Of course, it helps that the Milanese aristocracy, designers, Hollywood celebrities and famous artists have always considered Lake Como as their haven. Add to that the seclusion it offers, and you have all the makings of a fairytale, intimate wedding. We picked out five of the best venues here for the perfect destination wedding.
It’s common knowledge that Chrissy Teigen and John Legend were married at this glam spot, a historic, late 1500s villa venue with luxe views and extensive gardens. It’s also said that the terrace was the location for Legend’s music video ‘All of Me’. At US$11,000-US$15,000 a day, Villa Pizzo boasts of the longest waterfront, a discotheque for after-parties and breathtaking Italian architecture alongside gilded interiors. The ballrooms with antique terraces are the big draw while the villa also partners with a leading banquet catering service who offers the most refined Italian wedding cuisine.
Known as the most luxurious villa on Lake Como, Villa Pliniana, the stunning 16th century Italian palazzo, lives it up on 18 waterfront acres on Lake Como. It comes with many a private boat docks, helicopter landing pads and vast gardens. The villa runs on two contrasts – the intimacy of a home away from home with the five-star service of a luxury property. There are personal butler services, an infinity pool with stunning views and fabulous ballrooms that can make your wedding pictures breathtaking with minimal effort.
Villa Sola Cabiati
An 18th century beauty, the Villa Sola Cabiati is considered one of the most beautiful villas on Lake Como and was passed onto the noble families in Lombardy for generations. The magnificent residence is now open exclusively to guests of the Grand Hotel Tremezzo and that means you’re close to art, architecture and the aristocratic art de vivre. The impeccable gardens and opulent interiors have been written about for years, and the villa takes you back to the golden era of Milanese aristocrats and Neoclassical architecture.
Il Sereno Hotel
This one’s relatively new and comes with a private palazzo. The Il Sereno Hotel, designed by the acclaimed Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola, is what you would call an ode to Italian architecture at it’s finest, with enticing amenities and design. The hotel comes with a Michelin-starred restaurant that serves up some grand menus and interesting dishes. Rumour has it that Leonardo da Vinci once lived there and Napoleon Bonaparte played snooker inside – now that’s something to look into. The venue also comes with three natural waterfalls, wonderful hiking trails alongside self-driving custom-made Riva boats and an indoor pool and, note this, helicopter tours and 60-foot infinity pool.
This one is undoubtedly the biggest, most prime pick at Lake Como and it already has the Ambani stamp of approval with Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal’s big day there. The estate was built in 1568 and became luxury hotel in 1873; It’s been a favourite of Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Catherine Zeta-Jones, George and Amal Clooney and Ava Gardener over the years. The Renaissance–styled venue, the antique furnishings and grand statues bridge both glamour and grandeur beautifully.
All images: Courtesy hotels