Commissioned by the writer Alberto Carlo Pisani Dossi and designed by the architect Luigi Conconi, Villa Dossi Pisani was built on the hill of Cardina in a truly exceptional environmental setting.
Carlo Dossi was a writer, an important figure in the Scapigliatura literary movement, as well as a politician and archaeologist. He chose the site as the location for the building based on its exceptional environmental relationship with the lake and the city and the charm offered by the cypresses, evoking the atmosphere of his beloved poet Boklin.
Villa Dossi Pisani, designed by Conconi, was built by Luigi Perrone who made a few changes to its practical and functional features in addition to the picturesque appearance that characterised the design of the painter-architect. Construction began in 1897 was completed in 1910, the year of Dossi’s death.
This isolated, imposing and asymmetrical building in a dominant position on the lake surrounded by tall trees, has a three-story layout. The villa takes advantage of the sloping terrain: the entrance from the garden is on the middle floor, providing access to a large vestibule that, through the wide staircase from the wrought iron railing, leads to the hall below. The facade is opened up by porticoes and balconies.
The entrance of Villa Dossi Pisani, facing the garden, opens up on the middle floor that lies below the last floor housing the guest rooms and an open gallery sitting room. The entrance leads to a large vestibule then a large staircase with a wrought-iron balustrade made by Alessandro Mazzuccottelli. The floor below is the home’s more formal area with the famous “portico of friends” with columns bearing the inscriptions of various members of the artistic circle of Milan’s bohemians (Tranquillo Cremona, Giuseppe Grandi, Giuseppe Rovani, Giosuè Carducci). The “cup of friendship” in Candoglia pink marble rises up in the centre of the portico. From the portico, offering panoramic views over the city and the basin of Como, you enter the dining room and cinema.
Various pieces of furniture by Eugenio Quarti are proudly displayed inside with the decorations and fresco by Carlo Agazzi and two exceptional works by the sculptor Grandi: the "Portrait of Rovani" and a chandelier with bronze cupids holding up a glass bowl. One monumental piece on the entrance floor deserving of mention is "To the three comforting arts of life " by Cesare Ravasco with three allegorical leaning against an obelisk, inside of which a service-lift was set up for any meals served outdoors.
Cardina rises up on a hill above Como, a short distance from Switzerland and offers a charming panoramic view over Como. The ideal destination for an unforgettable holiday on the lake.