Summer finally arrived! The grand opening of the summer season was our enchanting stay at Villa Orselina. One of Switzerland’s best boutique hotels, in the picturesque town of Locarno. From the moment we arrived, we were captivated by the breathtaking views, luxurious atmosphere and the warm embrace of Swiss hospitality. Locarno and Ticino canton have a special place in our heart already. Yet this stay added remarkable moments and exquisite experiences that made leaving the place an emotional detachment!
Awe-Inspiring Views of Locarno & Lago Maggiore that Take the Breath Away
Perched majestically atop a hill, Villa Orselina welcomed us with a panoramic vista that left us speechless. Stepping onto our room’s balcony, we were immediately greeted by a mesmerizing sight: Locarno town & its bay, nestled gracefully by the shimmering waters of Lago Maggiore. The majestic mountains, their peaks kissed by clouds, added a heavenly touch to the already enchanting scenery. Each day began and ended with the unforgettable view that filled our eyes with wonder and our hearts with tranquility.
Luxurious Interiors that Embrace Timeless Elegance of Best Boutique Hotels
As we stepped into the grand foyer of Villa Orselina, we were instantly transported to a world of refined luxury. The hotel’s interiors reflected an elegant charm, blending contemporary design with classic elements. Every detail was thoughtfully curated. From the stylish furnishings to the tasteful chandeliers decorating the interior. The colour white was dominant and the wonderful flower arrangements were everywhere, adding to amazing style of the place. Our room was a grand suite, with a big bedroom & bathroom, salon, dinning table and small kitchenette. No barriers inside, all in an open space with marble floors that gave a feeling of elegance and freshness.
Embracing Summer Vibes by the Pool of Villa Orselina
With the warm embrace of the summer sun, we found solace and relaxation by the inviting outdoor pool. The refreshing waters offered relief from the warm weather, while the lush garden and sprawling deck provided ample space for lounging and unwinding. Surrounded by vibrant blooms and the fragrance of nature, we jumped in the joys of summer, sipping on cool beverages and relishing the gentle breeze that caressed the skin. The garden is nestled on multiple levels each with its own facilities. The entrance terrace has a magnificent view that combines both the pool, its palm trees and the beautiful bay of Locarno in one frame. Next to the pool, there is La Pergola restaurant, for delicious bites and amazing cocktails. Just beneath the pool level, there is another garden, with a colourful water fountain, and multiple hanging chairs to cocoon in. Next to it there is the covered garden for the rainy moody days and another deck with chaises-longues. If all of this was not inviting enough, the orange Flamingo make its appearance on the pool, and now we couldn’t resist jumping in the refreshing waters!
Ascona, the neighbour of Locarno and Its Colourful Aisles
With such a summer indulgence it was hard to get out of the pool. Yet, we had to pull ourselves forcefully and get ready for a short trip. We had a task on our agenda and that is to visit the stunning Ascona. Obviously we missed it on our most recent trip, but now we couldn’t be that close and not visit it again. A 20 min ride and we are strolling the amazing colourful streets and benching on the lakeside. No visit to Ascona is complete without a gelato (say two) and a ride on its swing! Here comes out our inner child again! There is something magical about places that allow us to let ourselves out freely. Places that make us wait impatiently like children for our turn on the swing. That puts a sparkle in our eyes as we taste that amazing gelato!
Gastronomy Pleasures at Villa Orselina Exquisite Restaurant
After couple of hours in Ascona, we head back to the hotel for dinner time! One of the highlights of our stay was the gastronomic journey at “Il Ristorante di Villa Orselina”. Each evening, we embarked on a culinary adventure, savoring the artfully crafted dishes that combined mediterranean flavors with Italian and local influences. From fish and seafood delicacies to mouthwatering meat cuts. Each plate was a masterpiece that delighted both our palates and our senses. We attempted to be experimental and try different dishes, the whole selection was great! However if we have to choose, we highly recommend the Carpaccio of Bison or Fois Gras Terrine for starters. While for main dish, the Risotto with grapefruit and Mazara prawn is out of this world. The Smoked Beef Tornado, has an amazing presentation that is surpassed only by its taste. For dessert go for the signature Lo Zabaione, presented in an egg like plate, or the Tiramisù classic.
The side of every dish was the stunning views over Locarno and the lake. The attentive service further enhanced the overall dining experience, creating a charming atmosphere.
Delightful Mornings with a Rich Breakfast and a Scenic Terrace
Every morning we eagerly made our way to the hotel’s terrace, enticed by the promise of a rich and lavish breakfast spread. As we feasted on a delectable array of freshly baked pastries, artisan cheeses, and seasonal fruits, our eyes were drawn to the breathtaking view that unfolded before us. The morning sunlight danced upon the sparkling waters of Lago Maggiore, casting a golden glow over Locarno and the surrounding landscape. For one occasion we had the breakfast at the room’s balcony. The views matched those of the terrace, but the romantic ambiance of being tête-a-tête gave the breakfast a wonderful cosy touch that we cherished.
Strolling the beautiful Locarno & Sipping Coffee at Piazza Grande
After one lavish breakfast, we head downhill to Locarno. No trip to Locarno would be complete without indulging in a leisurely coffee in the vibrant Piazza Grande, followed by a serene lakeside promenade. Piazza Grande is a bustling square filled with lively cafes and historic buildings. The aroma of freshly brewed coffee filled the air as we sat back, sipping our drinks and watching the world go by. The colourful facades of the buildings of Piazza Grande where the object of our camera lenses. Afterward, we took a leisurely promenade along the lakeside, where the tranquil waters of Lago Maggiore mirrored the beauty of the surrounding landscape. It was a serene and peaceful moment, allowing us to fully appreciate the natural wonders that Locarno had to offer. The gentle lapping of the waves accompanying our thoughts of how stunning and heart-warming is this beautiful town.
Rejuvenation and Tranquility at the Serene Spa of Villa Orselina
After our day endeavours we had back to Villa Orselina. At the hotel’s tranquil spa, we surrendered to the charm of relaxation and rejuvenation. Guided by skilled therapist, we indulged in a blissful massage and facial treatment, melting away any traces of tiredness or tension. The serene atmosphere of the spa, coupled with the experienced therapist touches, created a harmonious sanctuary where our bodies and minds found rest. It was a transformative experience that left us feeling renewed, refreshed, and deeply connected to our inner selves. The SPA has also an indoor pool, a sauna and Turkish bath, in addition to a relaxation area. On top of being a distinctive boutique hotel, Villa Orselina’s La SPA, place it among the best wellness hotels. We always strive for sunny weather, but the rainy morning of one day, gave us an amazing opportunity to try and indulge in the SPA facilities. It was a rare time that we were very thankful for a cloudy occasion!
A Picnic in Nature’s Embrace, amidst Villa Orselina’s Garden
In the embrace of nature’s splendor, we enjoyed a special picnic arranged for us in Villa Orselina’s enchanting garden. Surrounded by fragrant blooms and the symphony of birdsong, we savored gourmet delicacies, handcrafted with care. Each bite was infused with the essence of the pristine surroundings, creating an extraordinary gastronomic experience that merged seamlessly with the beauty of the natural world. The picnic became a cherished memory, etched in our hearts as a testament to the hotel’s dedication to creating moments of pure delight.
Exploring Locarno’s Treasures: Madonna del Sasso, Cardada, and Lakeside Strolls
Madonna del Sasso
While the allure of Villa Orselina was undeniable, we couldn’t resist venturing beyond its enchanting walls to explore the surrounding treasures of Locarno. The location of the hotel made our choice easier. A visit to the iconic Madonna del Sasso, rewarded us with an historical and architectural masterpiece. Madonna del Sasso is literally countable steps from the hotel and you can even see it from some of the rooms. This iconic pilgrimage site enchants visitors with its beauty and panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Stepping inside, you cannot but be touched by a serene atmosphere, enhanced with religious art and intricate details. The sanctuary’s rich history and spiritual significance added depth to our experience, allowing us to connect with the centuries-old traditions amidst the majestic beauty of Locarno.
Another unforgettable experience, starting few meters from the hotel, was the cable car ride to Cardada. As we ascended, the world below slowly transformed into a stunning panorama of majestic peaks, lush forests, and the sparkling waters of Lago Maggiore. Once we reached Cardada, we were greeted by the mesmerising views that seemed to stretch endlessly. We marvelled at the panoramic vistas of the majestic Alps and the serene waters of Lago Maggiore. The view even extended to Valle Maggia. This is not the first time we have been here, but each time, the scenery was decorated with a different season’s colors. This time we chose to be there early in the morning and it was such a beauty! The sun colouring gradually the blue waters of Maggiore and creating different shades of blue on its surface.
Our stay at Villa Orselina in Locarno was a tapestry of unforgettable moments. From the enchanting views that embraced us each day to the luxurious service that embraced us in elegance. Every aspect of our experience was crafted to perfection. The hotel’s dedication to providing a haven of tranquility, culinary delights, and rejuvenation ensured that our time in Locarno was nothing short of extraordinary. It also positioned the hotel as one of the best boutique hotels in Switzerland. Villa Orselina and its idyllic surroundings and near by experiences, became a cherished chapter in our travel story. Here, we learned something new, “il dolce far niente”, or the sweetness of doing nothing, as the hotel’s slogan say.