The structure has partially maintained the original one of the convent on whose the Villa was built: the plan is square and develops around an internal cloister, while the facades have been enriched with neoclassical elements.
The interior is rich in decorations, including frescoes, portraits, statues, tapestries, and is enriched by some collections of objects, such as ceramics, toy soldiers, Chinese postcards. Around the main building were built accommodations for the service staff, two guest residences, stables, an amphitheater and a swimming pool, built at the beginning of 1900.
The garden has retained some of its original English style.
The monastery on whose foundations the villa was built has very ancient origins, around the year 1000. Closed in 1784, it was acquired by Vittoria Calderara, a noblewoman who transformed the property into an aristocratic villa surrounded by an English garden.
Later, it was purchased by Luigi Erba, brother of Carlo Erba, founder of the first Italian pharmaceutical company, who, however, felt that the house was too modest for the family’s needs, so commissioned the current Villa Erba. Until the 1940, an area of the Villa was given to a community of nuns who organized sewing courses, with the support of Carla Erba, who collaborated with architects Ponti and Lancia to develop designs to be used as models for embroidery.
The Erba family maintained the property during the years; the famous director Luchino Visconti, Carla Erba and Duke Giuseppe Visconti di Modrone’s son, retired there to finish his film Ludwig. He set up an editing room in the stables and hosted prestigious guests, such as Maria Callas and Coco Chanel.
Largo Luchino Visconti, 822012Cernobbio (CO) Italy