Grandi Giardini Italiani Srl

c/o Villa Erba
Largo Luchino Visconti, 4
22012 Cernobbio (COMO)

© Giorgio Majno

© Giorgio Majno

© Giorgio Majno

© Luca Simoncello

© Giorgio Majno


Villa Fogazzaro Roi - Bene FAI

Oria di Valsolda , Como

Giardino storico
Partially wheelchair accessible


The historic building on Lake Porlezza was bequeathed to FAI by the great grandson of celebrated Italian novelist Antonio Fogazzaro, Giuseppe Roi, in 2009.
The Vicenza-born novelist spent long periods of his life in the villa, and its refined interiors remain highly evocative of the descriptions in his 1896 book entitled The Little World of the Past. A literary house, then, which for Fogazzaro served as a quiet, se- cluded refuge, facing out over the lake and immersed in the greenery of the Valsolda. The building is constructed on a pre-existing structure dating back to the 16th century, and to this day features the original, 400-year-old garden on three terraces – one of which is suspended – awash with sweet osmanthus, as creeping fig winds its way round the walls and balustrades, mirroring the place described by the author.

''The little hanging garden was transformed into the image and likeness of Franco. A sweet osmanthus in the corner spoke of the power of gentle things on the warm, impetuous spirit of the poet; over in another corner, a little cypress, which Luisa did not much like, encapsulated his religious nature; a small fretwork parapet, between the cypress and the osmanthus, with two lines of tufa at the top, containing a delightful population of verbena, petunia and portulaca, hinted at the singular ingenuity of the artificer; the numerous roses scattered everywhere expressed his affection for classical beauty; the creeping fig that covered the walls on the lakeside, the two orange trees in the middle of the two terraces and a vigorous, lucid carob revealed a temperament that was highly sensitive to the cold, a creativity always facing southwards, unmoved by the charms of the north.'' (A. Fogazzaro, The Little World of the Past).

In 1941 the villa's garden and reception room served as the set for the film Old-Fashioned World, directed by Mario Soldati, which was closely based on Fogazzaro's successful novel.

How to reach

By Lake
Boarding from Lugano with public service (Lake Lugano Navigation Company).
Boarding from Lugano and Porlezza with private service.

By Bus
From Italy
From Como to Menaggio with the ASF C10 line
From Menaggio to Oria Paese with the ASF C12 line towards Lugano
From Switzerland
From Lugano to Oria Paese with the ASF C12 line towards Menaggio

By Car
From Italy
From Como: follow the signs for Menaggio, Porlezza and Valsolda; then continue for about four kilometers along the Strada Statale 340 towards Valsolda along the lake. Once past Albogasio, at the crossroads for Castello, you will find Villa Fogazzaro Roi.
From Switzerland
From Lugano: follow the signs for the Dogana di Gandria and Oria.
At the junction for Castello, there is Villa Fogazzaro
Opening hours
2024 Season
Open from 9/03/2023 with the following opening hours: Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
FAI members: € 4,00
Full price: € 18,00
Reduced (6-18 years): € 10,00
Residents of Valsolda, Porlezza and Claino con Osteno: € 4,00
Children (up to 5 years): free
Students (up to 25 years): € 13,00
Contact us
Via Antonio Fogazzaro, 14
22010 Oria di Valsolda (Como)

M. +39 335 7275054
T. +39 0344 536602
Grandi Giardini ItalianiGreat Gardens of the WorldGardens of SwitzerlandComo the electric lakeThe Great GreenAICC Associazione Imprese Culturali e Creative
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Villa Fogazzaro Roi - Bene FAI