CLADmag issue 3 2017

Page 72

HOSPITALITY

BEAUTY SLEEP

When Patricia Urquiola was tasked with creating the first new hotel on Lake Como for years, she knew she had to get it right. She tells Magali Robathan how Il Sereno took shape

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pened in August 2016 but with its official opening this season, Il Sereno Lago di Como is a contemporary hotel designed by Patricia Urquiola on the banks of Italy’s Lake Como. Built on top of an old arched stone boathouse, the 30 room property is the first hotel to be built on the shores of Lake Como in Italy for decades, according to hospitality group Sereno Hotels. Spanish designer Patricia Urquiola was involved with all aspects of the design at Il Sereno, including the architecture, interiors, furniture design, and the design of the staff uniform and private boats used to transport guests. The hotel’s location is a popular beauty spot, drawing tourists with its dramatic vistas of the southern Italian Alps and idyllic small towns. George Clooney, Madonna and Donatella Versace have all bought properties on the lake. Il Sereno Lago is an all-suite hotel, with each of the 30 guest rooms coming with its own furnished terrace and lake views. It features a private beach, an infinity pool, vertical botanical gardens by French botanist Patrick Blanc and a restaurant run by Michelin-starred chef Andrea Berton.

One of the focal points of the hotel is a dramatic stairwell designed by Urquiola. Made from natural materials, including walnut, the steps are encased in bronze and are designed to appear as if they are floating. The use of wood is intended to complement the stone and marble walls found throughout the hotel, including in the Ristorante Berton – which uses the same local stone used in the façade of the hotel for the restaurant tables. Other amenities include a 60ft lakefront freshwater infinity pool, a small beach with direct access to the lake, and gardens featuring hidden passageways leading to the nearby Villa Pliniana, where Sereno Hotels recently opened another property on Lake Como. Urquiola collaborated with Patrick Blanc on Il Sereno Lago’s green spaces. Blanc has created three distinct pieces in one setting; two vertical gardens and one green sculpture. The most striking, ‘Le Mirroir Vert du Lac’, features more than 2,000 plant types and was inspired by the colours and movement of the water. Covering the main façade, the garden is visible to visitors from across the lake.


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