This week’s dream
A mother-daughter vacation on Lake Como
I’m at the wheel of a sleek Cantiere Ernesto Riva motorboat, zooming across Italy’s Lake Como with my mother, when disaster seemingly strikes, said Sara Lieberman in The Washington Post. A gust of wind has lifted some papers, and I fear our right to pilot this gorgeous boat—“at a whopping $190 an hour”—has just disappeared overboard. “Mom!” I shout over the engine. “Where is the permit?” Digging around in the bow, she emerges triumphant, waving the laminated papers over her head. Relieved, we resume the important mission at hand: trying to spot George Clooney’s villa among the gorgeous homes that dot the shore. “There!” I say. “I think it’s that one.” The villa looks quiet, so we creep closer, wondering aloud what it would be like to have cocktails with the Clooneys.
I’d met up with my mom two days earlier in Milan. After just an hour’s drive, we were lakeside, watching the sunset and sipping spritzes—that wonderful Italian drink made, in this case, with Aperol, Prosecco, and a splash of soda. The next morning, we caught a ferry to the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, a “very Wes Anderson” edifice created from a former palace that looms over the lake. We had scheduled massages at the hotel’s spa, and on our walk-through, we peeked in on opulent lounges with jewel-colored couches and art nouveau ceilings “fit for royalty.” Still glistening with oil after our blissful back rubs, we hopped another ferry to Bellagio, a town known as the Pearl of Lake Como for its cobblestone alleys and leafy pergolas. Feeling peckish, we stopped for some prosciutto-wrapped melon at a lakeside café. “Then, we were off to get purposefully lost among the shops.”
That evening we dined at Silvio, a five-generation establishment known for its stunning setting and a famous dish: fresh lake perch served with a truffle-and-Parmesan cream sauce. Our last day was supposed to be our “chill day”—reading and sipping spritzes beside our hotel’s infinity pool. But I’d got antsy looking at that stunning Riva motorboat. “Its shiny teak exterior had been enticing me ever since I saw it bopping in the water on our first day.” Soon, we were skipping across the sparkling lake. “The only thing missing was that fizzy orange drink.”
At Il Sereno Lago di Como (serenohotels.com), rates start at $986 a night.