Villa L’Antica Colonia is located in a superb setting on the hills above the Lake Orta and its island of San Giulio with stunning commanding inspirational views.
Lake Orta is on the west of Lake Maggiore at 20 minutes by car and about 1 hour from Como Lake and it is entirely in Piedmont region. It is known as ‘Cinderella’ and has long been a favourite destination for tourists thanks to the quiet beauty of the landscape, its fascinating history and its wealth of artistic treasures principally Romanesque and Baroque architecture. Of the handsome medieval villages dotted along its shores, Orta San Giulio, just 3.5 kilometres from the villa, is the most famous: a delightful village of narrow streets, cobbled squares, frescoed houses, palm trees and lakeside cafés. A visit to the Sacro Monte is obligatory for anyone coming to see the historic village of Orta San Giulio, the religious complex of several chapels with terracotta statues dedicated to the life of St. Francis, now inscribed as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The real jewel of the lake is the picturesque Isola di San Giulio and it is worth taking a boat from the square of Orta San Giulio and visit the 12th-century Romanesque church with its immense Gothic pulpit and tomb of St. Julius.
The villa is precisely located in Crabbia, a small and quiet ancient hamlet at about 1.5 kilometres from the main village of Pettenasco, one of the pretty lakeside villages on the Lake Orta surrounded by a delightful landscape away from the mass tourism. Close to the villa you’ll find local restaurants within walking distance. In Pettenasco there are more restaurants available, bars, grocery stores and beaches as well as a boat rental. It should be noted that the railway line is at 150 meters from the villa.
The area around is also perfect for trekking and mountain biking, from the gentle strolls along the lakeside to longer and more challenging trekking on the mountains close to the Swiss border. You can enjoy walking on the paths through the panoramic hills above Lake Orta close to the villa, in Pettenasco across the Pescone torrent or on the Mottarone mountain between Orta and Lake Maggiore, which offers one of the most beautiful and extensive views in the area.
You can also drive up into the Ossola Valley to enjoy a walk amid the fascinating Alpine environment of Alpe Veglia, Alpe Devero and Toce waterfalls crossing the large prairies with century-old larch forests and imposing rocks as well as till the Monte Rosa mountain. It is the second highest massif in the Alps and offers several tours from Alagna and Macugnaga both for beginners and for trained people up to the refuges on the glaciers.
Between mountains and nature reserves in the Ossola Valley do not miss the unique opportunity to spend some hours in tranquillity, relax and psycho physical well-being in the prestigious thermal baths-spa of Premia, the most important ones of the High Piedmont, dipped into the magnificent scenery of the Alps.
The Lake Maggiore is also one of the main excursions; just at about 30 minutes drive you’ll discover the fascinate of historical and cultural aspects of its villages and the Borromean Islands. It is worth to spend some hours to visit the famous Botanical Gardens of Villa Taranto, one of the most beautiful botanical gardens in Europe with its innumerable rare trees and flowers coming from every part of the world that enchant visitors from March to October.
The area is a beautiful place also for a good selection of sporting like fishing, tennis, golf (more than 40 clubs located all over the area both for beginners and experts).
It is also an interesting shopping area, from the outlets of Italian brand to the famous kitchen houseware designed by Alessi, Piazza and Lagostina located in the city of Omegna.
It’s known that the wine is a prestigious patrimony that makes Piedmont an extraordinary area of excellence to world-wide level.
The best-known wines from the region in the of Piedmont include Barolo and Barbaresco. They are made from the Nebbiolo grape. Other popular grapes used for red wine production are Barbera and Dolcetto.
The sparkling wine Asti spumante is made from the Moscato grape. The majority of the area’s winemaking take places in the provinces of Cuneo, Asti and Alba. The Brachetto is another variety used for making sweet and sparkling red wines.
Grappa is a classic Italian grape spirit produced in Piedmont, as well as in Veneto and Tuscany and Piedmont. The famous Grappa di Barolo, distilled from Nebbiolo wines, is from the famous village of Barolo.
At about 30 minutes drive from the villa you will find other famous wineries where you an taste some renowned red wines like Colline Novaresi, DOCs Fara and Boca, as well as Ghemme DOCG and Gattinara DOCG, palatial and sought wines which create a magical union with the specialties of the piedmont kitchen.