Grand Hotel Castagnolia

Lugano, Switzerland

At a Glance

  • Exudes old school glamour, both inside and out, with manicured parklands sloping down to the water’s edge

  • Most of the rooms are south facing, enjoying beautiful views of the lake or the parklands from their balconies or terraces

  • With three restaurants and three bars there’s an abundance of dining and drinking options, with one of the restaurants boasting Lugano’s only Michelin star

  • A private beach, indoor pool, gardens, spa and fitness centre create a luxurious resort escape, though the historic and cultural sights of the town are within walking distance

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Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

The best time to visit Lake Lugano is in the summer, the weather is very warm and activities on the lake can be enjoyed. Late summer is wonderful but expect the towns to be busier and higher temperatures in August.

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Housed in an old mansion, with gardens that stretch elegantly towards Lake Lugano, this opulent resort offers the glamour of a former era while a Michelin-star restaurant, private beach, tennis courts and indoor pool add a dash of modern-day luxury.

Once home to Russian nobility, this Italianate villa is now a grand and palatial resort on the shores of Lake Lugano. With spectacular views over the lake to the mountains beyond, three superb dining options, an indulgent spa and picturesque parklands leading down to a private beach on the lake, this is a luxurious and charming Mediterranean escape.

The 74 Rooms and Suites are individually designed, offering a luxurious yet homely feel with heavy drapes, rich furnishings, antique-style furniture and atmospheric lighting. Each features a balcony or terrace with south facing views over the gardens or lake (with the exception of the Double Rooms on the Side), an idyllic spot for both a morning coffee and evening aperitif. With twice-daily maid service, crisp white bed linens and luxurious bathrobes and slippers, the accommodation is supremely comfortable and offers much more than simply a base from which to explore Lugano.

Boasting Lugano’s only Michelin-starred restaurant, dining at the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola is a joy, and one to be savoured as you soak in the tranquil views over the dappled waters of the lake. From the fresh, seasonal dishes of La Rucola to the elegant Mediterranean cuisine of Le Relais, the property offers a wealth of gastronomic delights, though the pièce de resistance has to be the award-winning Restaurant Gallery Arté al Lago. Set on the shores of the lake, the artwork of this gallery restaurant is rivalled only by the exquisite culinary works of art skilfully presented by Head Chef Frank Oerthle. Three bars join this selection of dining options, adding a glamorous space for cocktails, a garden bar and a salon for elegant afternoon teas. The Spa of the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola is a serene and picturesque spot with an indoor pool that opens on to the gardens, a Clarins Beauty Corner, a sauna, steam bath, fitness centre, yoga and a tempting menu of massages, facials and therapies.

While you would be forgiven for arriving at the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola and simply flopping onto a sunbed, only moving between beach, spa and restaurant, the hotel’s proximity to the lake and the city affords a range of sightseeing options and activities. From paddleboarding on Lake Lugano to strolling through the city’s boutiques and cafes, Lugano is a laidback spot to explore on foot. Take the funicular up Monte Brè to appreciate the spellbinding views, or sail out on the water to capture the city from the lake. The Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola is an elegant and refined resort, with an air of sophistication and glamour suited to a romantic escape, making it ideal for couples looking to both explore the city and countryside of Lugano while relaxing in luxurious surrounds.

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From the Double Rooms to the Suites, the accommodation is well-appointed and elegant. While the views from the Double Rooms vary, the majority look out over the gardens or the lake, with the higher Suites boasting captivating panoramas of both. The Suite Monte Bre and Suite San Salvatore are particularly special, with two bedrooms, three balconies and breathtaking views over the park to the lake beyond. Complimentary wifi, flat-screen satellite TV and air-conditioning bring the 21st century to otherwise classically styled accommodation. 


Children are welcome at the hotel and a number of the rooms can be interconnected, while the two-bedroom suites are ideal for families.


The amenities of the hotel are as graceful and refined as its decor. Three restaurants offer a range of cuisines and dining styles, from the more casual, easy-going fare of La Rucola to the Michelin star elegance of Restaurant Gallery Arté al Lago. Smart-casual attire is requested for dinner, with long trousers for men.

The parklands that surround the property offer a tranquillity not often found in city hotels, perfect for a gentle stroll down to the shore of Lake Lugano where you find a private beach. Take a dip in the indoor pool and laze on the sunbeds that look out over the gardens, try your hand at a watersport or two, or simply relax on the terrace with a glass of chilled wine.


Its privileged location on the shores of Lake Lugano but within walking distance of the town allows for a range of activities to suit every taste and interest. A stroll around Lugano offers retail therapy, delicious restaurants, museums and galleries, while the lakes and mountains of the region are a mecca for hikers and water sports enthusiasts, though the views can also be appreciated from the top of Monte Bre by taking the nearby funicular.

Holiday Ideas

  • A Week in Eastern Switzerland

    St Gallen, St Moritz & Lugano

    inc flights & transfers for 7 nights

Location & directions

Lugano, Switzerland

The Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola is situated on the shore of Lake Lugano, just a short walk from the centre of the town and 4.4 miles from Lugano Agno Airport.

Speak to our specialists 020 3993 8860

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