Bellagio, Italian and foreign artists and writers in love


When planning a romantic weekend between the hills and lake, land and water, Bellagio is definitely the best Italian place. Located just inside the two branches of Como Lake, this small ancient village is also known as the "pearl" of the lake for its incomparable beauty, tranquility, villas, gardens, beautiful sunsets and panorama. But also for its mild climate and beaches. Not by chance, Bellagio was not only the birthplace but also the destination of Italian and foreign artists since the past times. Here poets, writers, musicians, sculptors, painters, architects, film directors, and even sports, military and politicians found particular inspiration (or love stories...).

A very popular destination of the Roman patricians and later of the noble families of Lombardy who built beautiful villas (Serbelloni and Melzi d’Eril), Bellagio was visited by Pliny the Younger, Mark Twain, Leonardo da Vinci, Napoleon, Stendhal, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Ippolito Nievo ...
On 20 April 1818 Percy Bysshe Shelly wrote to Thomas Love Peacock: «This lake exceeds anything I ever beheld in beauty, with the exception of the arbutus islands of Killarney. It is long and narrow, and has the appearance of a mighty river winding among the mountains and the forests».
In 1837, Franz Liszt had a love affair with Marie-Catherine de Flavigny, Comtesse d’Agoult, in Bellagio. You can still see a commemorative plaque here, and it is said that a marriage will be lucky if you spend your honeymoon in Bellagio!

Edward Hutton, famous for his Italian tourist guides, said that the lake is really enchanting, but the best part was certainly the one located between the towns of Como and Bellagio («Here, the Latin world is well protected and we really live in the country of Pliny and Virgil»).

Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, the Italian poet and writer, founder of the Futurist movement, passed over in Bellagio, after writing his last text Quarter Hour of Poetry on the Xth MAS. It was 1944 and the news spread quickly around the world.

Also Emperor Maximilian I, Ludovico il Moro, Silvio Pellico, Alessandro Manzoni Queen Victoria, Gustave Flaubert (...«here we would like to live and die»), John Fitzgerald Kennedy stayed in Villa Serbelloni, built in 1400. As far as the cinema world, in 1960 Luchino Visconti shot a scene from the movie Rocco and His Brothers and Sergio Leone had Robert De Niro walk along the lake in Once Upon a Time in America. It seems that George Lucas set the scene of a kiss of Star Wars.

What about George Clooney? Well, occasionally he goes there for lunch by his boat, moving from one of his houses on Como Lake. In fact he is quite right!
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