Villa Erba in Cernobbio is a sumptuous mansion in Mannerist style that fascinates with its early nineteenth-century atmosphere, the elegant décor of its rooms and the wonderful English garden overlooking the shores of Lake Como.
The villa is famous for having hosted Luchino Visconti, one of the greatest Italian directors, who lived joyful moments of his childhood in this family home and hosted friends such as Franco Zeffirelli and Alain Delon.
The director loved to tell that as children he and his brothers played with talcum powder to look like statues and jump into the water at the passage of the boats to amaze tourists.
Their trampoline was the balustrade facing the lake, where rival thieves George Clooney and Vincent Cassel converse in Steven Soderbegh's 'Ocean's Twelve' (2004). Also in the park of Villa Erba, John Turturro and Emily Watson fall in love in the film 'La partita - La difesa di Luzhin' (2001) by Marleen Gorris.
Villa Erba today hosts the Museum of the Rooms of Luchino Visconti.
Part of the property is also a green area overlooking the lake that once served as horse track.
Often chosen for weddings, corporate events or important fairs, it is open to the public only on the occasion of fairs or cultural days.
Villa Erba is one of the most famous and important villas of the Lario; commissioned at the beginning of 1900 by the Erba family as a representative residence, it is still today a place of great charm. The building, developed on two floors, has a square plan, an imposing entrance porch and, on the other side, a wide staircase that descends towards the lake.
The panoramic turret, a typical architectural element of that time, served as a link between the noble floors and those for the staff.
Wanted by the Erba family, historically involved in the pharmaceutical industry, it was designed and built between 1898 and 1901 by architects Angelo Savoldi and Giovan Battista Borsani.
The family bought the large estate from the Peluso family, who also owned Villa d'Este, and commissioned the renovation of the various buildings located in the huge area as well as the park. The heir Carla Erba married here the Duke Giuseppe Visconti di Modrone and from their union was born Luchino Visconti, a movie director considered the father of Italian Neorealism.