After stepping through the wrought iron entrance gate of Villa Sommi Picenardi, I am welcomed by Ilaria Redaelli Sommi Picenardi, a descendant of the Marquess Paolo Sommi Picenardi who inherited the villa from his aunt, a Lady of the Court of Queen Margherita of Savoy, in 1930. Accompanied by my hostess, a passionate expert of botany, we set off on my “naturalistic experience” by taking a walk through the magnificent English park that surrounds the seventeenth-century building, where one’s gaze is lost in the beauty of nature and all physical boundaries vanish. Before reaching the romantic lake surrounded by fountains, we come across a number of great trees which are hundreds of years old: sycamores, beeches, cedars and various other rare botanical species and trees from around the world. We continue our walk towards the back of the villa where a surprise awaits us: a delightful Italian garden set over various levels and embellished with ancient stone statues, fountains and other architectural and decorative elements, all typical of an eighteenth-century “Secret Garden“. When I reach the top of the stone staircase, a magnificent garden appears before me, filled with geometrically shaped hedges typical of the time… it truly is a view like no other! The Villa is the ideal place to spend a day in close contact with nature, accompanied by the owners who will guide you on your visit, the best time for which is from April to November. The Villa is also an ideal venue for hosting various kinds of reception events, including cooking classes as Ilaria Sommi Picenardi is also owner of the Milanese banqueting company Maison du Food.
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