The most famous villa on Lario lake, rises on a morainal hill on the western shore of Como Lake and lies on a 70.000 squared meters surface. Built around 1690, as country house, for marquis Giorgio Clerici, an important man during the Spanish and the Austrian rules in Milan, to whom refers the big letter “C” that is on the lake-facing gate of the villa. He decorated the Villa ordering wonderful Lombard-baroque stylish painted ceilings at second floor and an Italian garden; wonderful stairs, balustrade, fountains and the famous dwarf’s fall. The name of the architect who planned the villa, high on the lake, placed at the top of a terraced garden, is unknown.
The house has been given in 1843 to princess Marianna of Nassau, wife of prince Alberto of Prussia, and she gave it to her daughter Carlotta (whose name has been given to the villa) as present for her marriage with grand duke Giorgio of Sassonia Meiningen. This last owner broadened the garden adding “the English garden”, well-known and appreciated in all over the world. Until the First World War the Villa belonged to the Sassonia-Meiningen family, which reorganized the park and included new plant’s species and varieties.
Many marble works are collected inside the villa, like “Amore e Psiche” sculptured by Antonio Canova that is the most famous work of Villa Carlotta, the big frieze sculptured between 1817 and 1828 by Berthel Thorvaldsen representing Alessandro Magno entering Babilonia, and other works such as “The last Kiss of Romeo and Juliette” painted by Francesco Hayez, some frescoes of Appiani, arrases and furniture from XVIII-XIX centuries. Into the neo-classical chapel(1855), you will find also some high-relieves sculptured by P. Marchesi.
photo by: riddell.jane