We stayed for 5 days in the 2 bedroom Michaelangelo in Villa Matilda in Aug 2017, as a family of four (two daughters aged 11 and 14).
Of all the many places we've stayed around the world, this is absolutely the one we least wanted to leave.
We arrived by car having stayed previously in Austria and Germany and for those thinking of hiring a car to arrive at Como, my advice would be get a small one! The roads are narrow, although we were able to drive the hired Mercedes E-Class there with a little caution. The entrance to Villa Matilda is a gate and tunnel through rock in the side of the mountain and is quite tight, so would be much easier in a small car. Driving up to the Villa we were greeted by Viviana, who looks after the Villa when the owners are away. Viviana spoke perfect English and was incredibly charming and helpful throughout our stay. After unloading we were able to leave the car in secure parking at another property the other side of the road.
The grounds of the villa overlook the lake in a panoramic view and have beautifull plants, trees and a wonderful pool. There is also a barbecue that we used once and outside dining tables. The pool area also has the best equipped pool kitchen/dining area that we've ever had. There was a full kitchen with ice machine and everything one could desire just for use of the residents at the pool. This was really well thought out vision from the owner.
The suite itself was beautiful with perfect lake views from the kitchen, lounge and the smaller bedroom. A fully equipped kitchen and laundry room is a real bonus on holiday. The smaller bedroom which is upstairs is incredibly cute and has amazing views of the lake and it was loved by the children.
The terrace though is the star - magnificent. Full high-level panoramic views of the lake at night whilst enjoying an evening drink are memories that will never fade and that we will almost certainly come back to again.
Torno itself is very quaint and quiet and there is a gate at the end of the garden from which it is possible to walk to the shop and restaurants through a series of quirky tiny roman passages between the houses, to avoid using the road through Torno. This leads easily to the ferries or the lake-front restaurants (I have reviewed a couple in Torno elsewhere on Trip Advisor - the Albergo Ristorante Vapore being a highlight).
Quite simply the combination of location, property and hospitality is probably the best we've had anywhere in the world and would have cost at least 5x as much to get at the Villa D'Este.
What can we say ? Breathtaking views, beautiful apartment, peaceful surroundings & great location to explore!
Tony was amazing - was available to give advice regarding times of the ferries and places to eat plus he left some local produce in the fridge for us to enjoy !
We would highly recommend and cant wait to return one day x
This is a fantastic apartment, with superb views over Lake Como, in a lovely old villa. Our hosts Tony and Shirley could not have been more welcoming or helpful (even giving us a lift to and from a restaurant one evening). Their attention to detail was marvelous - including some very useful food items provided for us on arrival. Our children (14 & 11) loved their tower bedroom and playing in the pool - sometimes with Tony & Shirley's son. Torno is lovely with a useful little supermarket and direct bus and water bus services to Como. There are also some great restaurants in Torno and neighbouring villages where fabulous food can be enjoyed while looking out over the water. All in all a superb, well appointed, apartment in a fabulous location.
My family and I spent 5 days in July, 2017 in the Michelangelo apartment and absolutely loved it. Villa Matilda is a beautiful old tower and the apartment being on the top floor has wonderful views of Lake Como throughout but especially on the terrace. My family of 6 occupied both this apartment and the Da Vinci apartment on the 3rd floor. Spending time on the large terrace with wine and our purchases from the local grocery store; drinking, eating and just relaxing with a picture-perfect view of Lake Como was a fabulous way to end each day.
The apartment, the whole villa and grounds are just so well cared for by truly exemplary hosts. Tony and Shirley are delightful people. I communicated mainly with Tony and he was always prompt with replies, hugely informative and his advice on where to eat and places to go were always spot on. He also organised our transfers to and from the villa at very short notice. They are very accommodating and personable hosts. A nice touch is the welcome gift of some wine and groceries including some very tasty meats, cheese and fruit. Needless to say, eaten on the terrace!
Torno has its own ferry stop so it was easy to get around the lake on the ferries which was itself a very nice way to see other towns. The walk, on the old Roman road that runs at the rear of the property, to and from the ferry takes around 10 minutes (slightly uphill on the way back) but even for me, with an ankle problem was not too demanding.
We loved our holiday at Lake Como and it was made ever so special by Tony, Shirley and the beautiful Michelangelo apartment in Villa Matilda. We would definitely recommend this property to others and hope to return ourselves at some time in the future.
We spent a week in early May, 2017, in the Michelangelo apartment in Villa Matilda, and enjoyed our stay very much.
The layout of the apartment is a little different, so I'll walk through the arrangement, as best I can. It is spread out on multiple levels, but how they are connected is not obvious from the photos.
The apartment is on the top of the Villa, and is accessed by a lift, as Floor 5. Once off the lift, the front door is ahead, and does not require stairs. However, getting to some areas of the apartment does require using some stairs.
Through the front door is the main living area, which is made up of the living room, the kitchen / dining area, the main bedroom and the main bathroom, which has a tub with hand shower, and a laundry area. There is a staircase, in a foyer between the main bedroom and the main bathroom, leading up to another floor, above the main bathroom. Upstairs is another full bathroom, with a shower stall. Both bathrooms are well appointed, each with a bidet. Passing by the upstairs bathroom leads to a small staircase leading to the uppermost room on the villa, which is a loft with windows on all walls and two day-beds / beds. The view from that room is amazing. There is a laundry room off the foyer area of the living room, with washer, dryer and sink. If you pass through the front door of the apartment, as if going to the elevator, which is slightly left, you can, instead, proceed straight ahead and up a four (I believe,) stairs to a metal door, which opens onto a private, rooftop terrace. Tiled, with a rectangluar table and chairs and two chaise lounges, it is a lovely place for sunning or dining, and the views are amazing.
The apartment is spacious, comfortable, well appointed and charming. Seating in the living area was formal but cushiony, and there is a large, flatscreen TV, with SKY network, showing programming in multiple languages.
The main bed was comfortable, as well, and the bedding was of high quality and clean. There is a chest of drawers and an armoire, if you choose to unpack, and there is an over-door heat pump / ac for adjusting the temperature in the bedroom to your liking. There are shutters on the window in the main bedroom, which opens onto the back of the house, which can be closed, along with curtains. The result is a quiet, dark environment ideal for sleeping.
Things we particularly enjoyed:
We loved sitting on the terrace, in the late afternoon, and sharing a bottle of wine and enjoying the beautiful view of Lake Como. We enjoyed our meals, eaten sitting at the bar-like table along the windows in the kitchen. Again, the views of the Lake from those windows changed each day, sometimes during the day, so that we had a constantly evolving canvas of landscape beauty before us.
We enjoyed exploring the ancient Roman roads of Torno, one of which (the Strada Regina,) passes behind the villa. That road connects with others creating a network of beautiful, historic, attractive pathways through which we could enjoy the village. We tried many routes, never passing the same way twice to the market or the shops or the waterfront. There are long routes, we found, which lead to other villages / towns, so hiking is easy and entertaining.
There are easily accessible ships which stop in Torno, at the waterfront, which can be used to travel across and up or down the lake. Some are slower, and are convenient for getting across the lake, which may take 10 minutes by boat, if you go straight across, but which would take an hour by car. Some boats are fast, and us hydrofoil or other technology to zip you longer distances up or down. There are boat rentals across the lake; one of the best is straight across, Nettuno di Aquilini Nicolo, on the waterfront in Moltrasio. Cross over on the ferry from Torno, walk the short distance south to the cluster of buildings where Nettuno is located, make your arrangement and then go upstairs to Ristorante La Baia di Moltrasio for lunch, before heading out.
We enjoyed Tony and his wife, Shirley, who were gracious and accommodating hosts. They went the extra mile to make sure we were happy, and we appreciated their attention and efforts.
Thing we didn't enjoy:
Driving on the roads was stressful, particularly the route between Torno and Bellagio, due to the very narrow roads with no shoulder, where stone walls or cliff-edifices protruded into the roadway. I recommend the boat, if you want to go to Bellagio. As for driving in general; if you live in the USA, and if you intend to drive, rent a smaller car than you think you want, practice driving close to objects on the right (less than 12",) and watch your speed; they employ speed cameras.
What can I say about this property and our hosts -- Shirley and Tony are the consummate hosts, making every effort to make out stay enjoyable - wonderful people!
First, in booking the property, Tony took the time to chat with me beforehand, offer tips on how to get to Como, as well as activities for our stay - he brings a lot of expertise and it showed. His tips/suggestions were welcomed on our part as this was our 1st time to Como and he erased all hesitation and trepidation, really made us feel like we were making the right decision.
On our way to the Villa Tony & Shirley were over-communicative with directions and where to park, how to get to their place, etc..., Just really hospitable. Once inside the villa -- Shirley gave us a great tour of their grounds and our apartment - 5-star property - everything is all there and at your fingertips, from the pool area, to the kitchen, A/C, wifi - all easy to access and utilize. Felt like being at my parents place back home - just made us feel very welcome and the property is truly 5 star.
I'm hesitant to write this review as I want to keep this place all to myself, but I guess the best recommendation I can give is that we plan on booking another week or 2 at their property in the next year or 2. We can't wait to get back there - this time a party of 3 :)
Thanks again Shirley & Tony - say hi to Antonio -- have a great holiday!
Best - Samantha & Jesse