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The Curiosity: Isola Comacina the inn that challenges fate.

For 40 years every meal has finished with the same exorcism to keep away a medieval curse.

Isola Comacina in the Como lake The curse was laid in 1169, when Isola Comacina was razed to the ground by the army of Como. Vidulfo, then bishop of Como, threw his anathema against this small enemy isle: “The bells will ring no more, stone will not be placed upon stone, no-one will ever play host, on pain of a violent death”.

By and by the island was abandoned and no innkeeper or restaurateur dared challenge the medieval curse until the 1950s, when Lino Nessi - nicknamed “Cotoletta” - decided to challenge fate. Despite the sudden deaths of his two partners, he opened the inn on the island and entrusted himself to the advice of the English writer Francis Dale, who suggested that he carry out an exorcism against Vidulfo’s curse.

Since then every meal, which follows a single menu with very few variations according to the vegetables that are in season, closes with “the rite of fire” and with the preparation of a mixture of acquavite, sugar and coffee which is offered to all the guests at the same moment accompanied by the sound of the bell ringing.

A tradition that Nessi’s successor, Benvenuto Puricelli, has maintained intact. A unique experience that continues to fascinate the tourists who visit the Como Lake, including numerous exponents of the worlds of culture, sport and entertainment.
The inn on Isola Comacina is open from March to October.

To lodge in Como Lake

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