With its simple and ascetic neoclassical lines, it was designed by the architect Giocondo Albertolli in 1808 commissioned by Francesco Melzi d’Eril, vicepresident of the Napoleonic Italian Republic and great friend of Napoleon himself.
The park surrounding it, the first example of English garden on Lake Como, was created with great care by levelling land or raising small hills to make the area seem larger than it actually was.
The layout of the vegetation too was the result of in-depth studies designed to increase this optical illusion.
Among the garden’s trees and flowers there are also interesting sculptures, a small lake with water-lilies, an orangery fitted out as a museum and the neoclassical family chapel. Stendhal wrote extensively on the villa, whilst the pianist and composer Franz Liszt loved to spend time in the park and in particular, in the Moorish pavilion overlooking the lake.