The Villa Olmo is an 18th century neoclassical palace and public park in Como. It is among the best known and most beautiful ones of the city’s many sumptuous lakeside villas. It is located along the promenade connecting the city’s famous villas.
Villa Olmo Como
Address: Via Simone Cantoni, 1, 22100 Como. Phone: +39 031 576169. Opening times: From 10:00 till 18:00. Closed: Mondays. Ticket price: Depends on the event. (Note that opening times and admission may be subject to change.)
History and description
The neoclassical “Villa of the Elm Tree” supposedly owes its name to the presence of two enormous ancient elm trees in the area. It was constructed between 1782 and 1787 by the architect Simone Cantoni. The work had been commissioned by Innocenzo Odescalchi.
Part of the land the villa is constructed on had been property of the family since 1664. This included land they had acquired from the Abbey of Santa Maria di Vico.
Simone Cantoni (1739-1818) was a Swiss-Italian architect who worked mainly in the north. His most notable designs include the facade of the Palazzo Ducale in Genoa and the Santi Gervaso and Protaso Church in Gorgonzola.
In 1824, the villa was acquired by the Raimondi family, who sold it to the Visconti di Mondrone.
Since 1925, the Villa Olmo has been property of the city of Como. The building is being used for exhibitions, conferences and other events. One of the first exhibitions, in 1927, was dedicated to Como‘s most illustrious inhabitant, Alessandro Volta.
What to see
The medallions decorating the facade of the building depict various philosophers. The coat of arms on the central balustrade belongs to the family of the Dukes of Visconti di Mondrione.
More Como villas
Other famous villas in Como are the Villa d’Este, the Villa Balbianello, the Villa Carlotta, the Villa Erba and the Villa Melzi.