More and more foreigners are visiting stunning Lake Como, with many discovering its potential as somewhere to run a B&B. We take a closer look.

Moving to Italy and living la dolce vita is no longer just about sipping Prosecco in the shade of an olive tree all day, with increasing numbers of new foreign residents opting for a busier lifestyle that includes offering paying guests a bed for the night.

Around Lake Como, bed & breakfasts are widely used by the 80,000 British tourists that visit the lake each year

An estate agency that specialises in property around Lake Como said in April it has seen a staggering 120% rise in demand for properties suitable for running as a B&B in the past three months. Many of their clients have plans to move to Italy permanently and running a B&B gives them the perfect opportunity to live the Italian dream, whilst creating a small income and interest at the same time.

“Around Lake Como, bed & breakfasts are widely used by the 80,000 British tourists that visit the lake each year, staying on average for 4 days,” said Lake Como Concept. “B&Bs are an extremely attractive proposition, as they are relatively easy to set up, although attention needs to be given to the particular requirements of the region of your property. In Lombardy, for example, where Lake Como is located, there is no requirement to register for Italian VAT as long as you reside in the property, have a maximum of four bedrooms and operate for no more than nine months in a year.”

 

Can you see yourself running your own business in paradise?

 

For anyone thinking of going the Italian B&B route, the estate agency highlights villas starting at €460,000, including one almost on the lakefront with its own jetty, and some traditional Liberty villas for renovation as suitable properties for charming B&Bs.

For more ambitious people who are looking at a larger and more commercial venture, somewhere in and around the pretty lakeside town of Como could be an option. There, prices per night in high season can run into the thousands of euros! The agency can offer spectacular lakefront plots ideal for the right investor wishing to create the next 5-star resort, similar to Il Sereno.

Figures released by ConfCommercio this month show a 55% increase in annual international visitors to Italy between 2001 and 2016, reaching today’s figure of 56 million visitors

If you are looking for a second home in Lake Como, Blevio is a lovely little waterfront town that is a popular place to holiday and enjoy the Italian lifestyle on offer in the Lakes. There you’ll find a selection of bars, shops and restaurants, including Momi lakefront restaurant and the world-famous 5-star hotel Casta Diva.

Meanwhile, Italy’s international appeal continues to rise. Figures released by ConfCommercio this month show a 55% increase in annual international visitors to the country between 2001 and 2016, reaching today’s figure of 56 million visitors. Supporting this trend, the local Lake Como newspaper reported in April that bookings for holidays and hotels on Lake Como are already up 10% compared to the same time last year, adding that the increase is most marked in visitors from the UK and the USA.

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