On location on Lake Como

Very few things lend glamour and excitement to a location more than the presence of celebrities and film stars. Lake Como has glamour and beauty of its own to spare, so it does not need the bragging rights of celebs making Lake Como their destination of choice – but in fact, Lake Como and surrounding environs are so breathtaking and so lovely that their popularity is hard to measure. Couples planning destination weddings especially are seduced into factoring Lake Como wedding planning into their dreams, and Lake Como’s venues and natural beauty, while enough to attract the discerning couple, are only augmented by the cachet the place takes on given its famous visitors and residents, such as Madonna, George Clooney, Richard Branson, Gianni Versace and Sylvester Stallone.

Possibly one of the most sought after and famous locations is the popular Villa Balbianello. Not only a gorgeous setting for different weddings and events, its glamour and natural beauty also make it a picture-perfect setting for cinematic use.

Couples who are particularly tuned in to the fame beat and film locations will not be disappointed with some of Villa Balbianello’s most famous “visitors” – film crews capturing some of Hollywood’s biggest titles on the silver screen. Among many other high points in pop culture, a few of the best-known films set on location at the villa include:

  • Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones: Some scenes were actually shot at the famous Villa del Balbianello (including the secret marriage of Anakin Skywalker and Padmé Amidala).

villadelbalbianello01 villadelbalbianello02

  • Casino Royale: In the flashy, action-packed James Bond franchise, it’s tough to upstage Bond himself, but Lake Como may manage to do so in Casino Royale. Many scenes in this James Bond flick are filmed in several Lake Como locations. The Villa del Balbianello again makes an appearance, doubling as a hospital where James Bond recovers.


  • A Month at the Lake: A period piece taking place in pre-World War II Italy, Lake Como provides the backdrop for this film about a woman spending her summer on the lake.


  • It’s no wonder that the villa has been selected as the location for many films and events – its history is almost as storied as the cinematic tales for which it serves as a backdrop.

Originally built in Lenno on Lake Como in 1787, Villa del Balbianello was constructed on the site of a Franciscan monastery for Cardinal Angelo Maria Durini.

Through the 19th century the villa belonged to the political Porro-Lambertenghi family.

Unfortunately it fell into disrepair and neglect by the early 20th century, when an American businessman purchased and began to restore the villa to its former glory.

It was purchased in 1974 by explorer Guido Monzino, leader of the first Italian expedition to scale Mount Everest). He embellished the property with many works of art and artefacts from his expeditions. When he died, he left the property to the National Trust of Italy, which is still the owner of the villa today. The National Trust is a non-profit trust, FAI receives sites of historic, artistic and naturalist value through donations, bequests or loans for use, restores them, opens them to the public and ensures that everyone can enjoy them. The National Trust recognizes the value both for posterity (in capturing the villa and its lush surroundings on film) and for the public good (in allowing events and weddings to take place here).

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon Tumblr Posterous Email

Patrizia Saraga

Patrizia Saraga

What a long list of things could summarize my passions: style, details, colours, trends... but also artworks, interior design... If not clear, I'm the stylish and creative part of the…

Drop a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *