Be amazed by the beautiful landscapes of the Maggiore Lake, exploring the archipelago of the Borromean Islands, while Stresa and Pallanza look out on it. The islands were so called by the Borromeo family, feudal lords of the fourteenth century who became owners of the islands changing their appearance.
Today the family owns the “Isola Bella” and “Isola Madre”, considered popular tourist destinations for their splendid palaces and gardens, which are composed of many varieties of different species, with plants and flowers from all over the world.
The garden of “Isola Bella” is considered the most beautiful garden in baroque style in Europe. “Isola Madre”, however, is so named because it is the biggest island on the Maggiore Lake and was the first island to be built by the Borromeo family, with its garden and the palace turned into a museum.
“Isola dei Pescatori” is the only island inhabited by local people that everyday meet the tourists who are so anxious to dive in its narrow streets full of souvenir shops, bars and small restaurants, but until 50 years ago it was just a fishermens’ village .
Many famous people visited the Borromeo Islands, including Napoleon Bonaparte and Hemingway too, staying in the Grand Hotel des Iles Borromees and describing the view of the Maggiore Lake from the Grand Hotel as “the most beautiful in the world! It ‘s amazing!” This luxury hotel always gave hospitality to many artists, writers, aristocrats, intellectuals and charmed them.
Villa & Palazzo Aminta is another hotel situated on the banks of the Maggiore Lake; it a luxury resort and from its main restaurant you can admire all three islands. The location of this hotel is extraordinary and it’s about a kilometer from the center of Stresa.
The Grand Hotel Bristol has got an enviable location on the lakeside of Stresa. Recently restored, the hotel was originally a noble residence, and today it is the ideal location to relax in the evening with a drink near its swimmingpool enjoying a breathtaking view.