Throwback glamour meets the modern age at this waterfront Art Nouveau palazzo across the lake from Bellagio. Accommodations here are regal, with turn-of-the-century furnishings preserving the period feel, yet there are gracious updates throughout to keep the place feeling like a luxury hotel instead of a Grand Tour museum piece. The grounds alone are enough to warrant a stay at the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, which boasts lush, park-sized gardens—complete with clay tennis court and a panoramic jogging trail—that reach up the slopes behind the hotel and adjoin the famous Villa Carlotta. A floating pool at water's edge, a manmade beach on the lake, a full-service spa with a zenlike infinity pool, and three on-site restaurants, including a unique wine and fondue bar, round out the indulgent amenities.
Guest rooms and suites are dramatic affairs that make you feel like aristocracy—sumptuously decorated with bold, vivacious, unmistakably Italian colors, they also feature downright imperial bathrooms awash in the kind of marble and fancy fixtures you've possibly only seen in period films. Rooms are split among “lake view” and “park view” units, the former being the more expensive category, but those park views are stunning in their own right. Though the Grand Hotel Tremezzo doesn't have quite the same cachet as Villa d'Este down the lake, there's an utterly enchanting, golden-age-of-travel feel to the entire property. Its generous array of of first-class amenities, including a well-thought-out variety of swimming and dining options, and attentive service completes the package.