I grabbed a taxi at the Lugano train station for the crazy drive up a switchback road to reach the Villa Principe Leopoldo. Everyone else seemed to arrive in a Lamborghini, Porsche or Ferrari. Suspect their drive was more exciting though mine was no less beautiful. But it does gives you an idea of what is to come. If old world elegance and 60’s glamour had a baby it would be the Villa Principe Leopoldo. The hotel was originally built in 1926 as the summer home of Prince Friedrich Leopold, brother-in-law of Kaiser Wilhelm II, the last Emperor of Germany. Not only was he a heavily decorated general, but he an eye for location. The hotel sits on one of the most beautiful pieces of property in Lugano with views that are beyond spectacular. It only become a hotel in 1986, it feels like the rich & famous have been coming for much longer. I kept expecting Brigitte Bardot or Alain Delon to show up at the pool. The understated wow factor seems so their kinda place. Everything is designed to take advantage of the outstanding setting. All rooms have balconies. All the restaurants face out towards the lake. The courtyard and fountain in the back are Instagram heaven. At least one dinner in the restaurant is a must… the views (cannot say it enough) and food are both exceptional. The Coppa Volare dessert, basically a posh strawberry Sundae, was so good I had to indulge two nights in a row.
Number of Rooms: 37
Sweet Suite: Honestly any suite with a view (almost all) is going to Wow you. I stayed in a Panoramic one bedroom … but the Signature Lake suites are a bigger with a completely separate living area and bigger bathrooms.
Favorite Thing: The private suite at the Spa… the whole spa is amazing…my diamond facial was better than a facelift… but having this candle lit tranquil sauna, steam, jacuzzi, lounge bed space all to myself was pure bliss and possibly resulted in the most relaxed state I ever have achieved in my life. The dried kiwi was a delicious healthy (?) added treat!
Near By: The charming town of Lugano, hiking, boating on the lake, golf, Milan is an hour by train
Amenities: Dot Spa, fitness centre, bar, two Restaurants, 2 pools, shuttle to town/train station, pet friendly, room service, sauna, free parking, free wifi, tennis courts