We stayed in the Villa Passalacqua and the Villa Bellini. It was the most magical vacation we have ever had. The property itself is literally like having the Villa d'Este grounds to yourself. The Villa Passalacqua is palatial (30,000 sq. feet) and we used it as a means to get extended family together. The Villa Bellini is also beautiful but modern and smaller. The Villa Bellini actually has a better view of the lake as it sits right up over the water.
We also received incredible treatment from the owners and the staff. It's more like a 5 star hotel than a villa rental. We had cleaning staff each morning and ordered chefs for most evenings. They provided us with robes, bath towels and swimming pool towels with the Villa's logo on them. They also provided Etro shampoo and soap which we thought was a nice touch.
I don't know what it would be like a Christmas. It seems that much of Lake Como shuts down after November. I think if you just spoke with the managers they would make it special. We had numerous requests (arranging ski boats, tickets to the Last Supper, tour guides, massages, etc.) that were all handled without a hitch.
Have fun, I think you'll love it.
Thanks for the info. It helps! I put down the deposit and look forward to our quiet Christmas in Italy!
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