Forget the Views — This Breakfast Buffet Is Reason Enough to Visit Lake Como

It may ruin all other breakfasts for you.

Breakfast buffet at Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Enrico Costantini; Courtesy of Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Picture this: You wake up in a perfectly plush bed in the posh Grand Hotel Tremezzo. You open the shutters, gaze out onto the glittering turquoise waters of Lake Como, and spot a retro wooden boat framed by mountains dotted with quaint yellow buildings. Could things get any better? The answer is yes, because then you can head down to the main floor of the hotel — in a bathrobe and PJs if you like — and make your way to what is possibly the most spectacular breakfast buffet on earth.

This isn’t your typical hotel buffet. The buffet is situated in a grand room with high ceilings, gorgeous moldings, and fabulous wallpaper — it could easily double as a ballroom or a set from the latest installment of the White Lotus.

In the middle of the room, there are a handful of mirrored tables arranged in a rectangle, sparkling like the most opulent trays you’ve ever seen. In the middle of the rectangle, you’ll find the hotel staff who, once you’ve done a lap and figured out your food game plan, will help serve everything for you. Oh, you thought you’d serve yourself? No, no.

Breakfast from the buffet at Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Courtesy of Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Let’s start the day as we should, with the charcuterie. The selection here is so vast that you could quickly fill a plate just with cheese and cold cuts and call that breakfast. You’ll find bresaola (air-cured beef typical of the area), two types of salami, prosciutto, Parma ham, and more — all locally sourced, of course.

As far as the cheese goes, do you want Parmigiano Reggiano or pecorino from Sardinia? Don’t forget there’s also mozzarella di Bufala, aged local cheese, brie, feta, Emmental … the list goes on. And if you’re feeling like you need a little fish to round it all out, there’s smoked salmon and swordfish (served on silver fish-shaped plates, mind you) with all the fixings, as well as sardines and mackerel for some added umami. Now that your plate is already almost full, let’s head to the eggs.

The quick and chic option here is boiled eggs, which come served in vintage brass egg cups adorned with lions' heads, not unlike some you might find in a Versace print. The cups once belonged to Gualtiero Marchesi, a master of Italian cuisine who has an entire restaurant dedicated to his legacy on property. Even within this option, there are more options, as the eggs have been boiled for either three, six, or nine minutes.

If you want something a little more … custom, you can step into the sun-drenched open kitchen where you’ll find a chef waiting to poach, fry, or omelet your eggs however you like. While you get those eggs made to order, you might also consider waffles, or perhaps a slightly fancier, freshly prepared crêpe. Options, people!

Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Courtesy of Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Speaking of options and the recently revamped kitchen, guests can book pasta-making classes led by some of the hotel’s pasta experts in this lovely room with stunning views of the lake. 

So now that you’ve got your proteins, you might be wondering, what about the bread? Excellent question. The bread situation is – surprise – heavenly. Back at the buffet, you’ll find your classic toast, yes, but also freshly made mini focaccia, croissants, mini brioches, and tons of other options. On the sweet side, there are also mini cannoli with pistachio filling, different berry tarts, muffins, pound loaves, and even doughnuts. There’s also an entire section dedicated to jars full of biscotti and various Italian cookies from around the country. 

This brings us to the sweet stuff. If you want to go the more “natural” route, there are glistening silver towers loaded with fragrant fresh fruit. And not just your classic mixed berries, bananas, and maybe a slice or two of pale, lifeless pineapple. Here, they have the fancy fruit that your mom would never let you buy at the grocery store because you’d forget about it and let it go to waste. We’re talking ripe apricots, juicy peaches, plump pears, tart kiwis — a whole high-end produce section in one buffet.

In case you’d like to set your fruit up with some accompaniments, there are yogurt choices aplenty, as well as all kinds of cereals and toppings. Think muesli, goji berries, dried figs, coconut flakes — the works. Oh, and in case you need honey, there are chestnut and orange honeys from the nearby valleys, or perhaps you’d like to grab a spoon and scrape some of the good stuff straight off the giant honeycomb that’s perched up like a sweet, golden prize. 

Breakfast from the buffet at Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Sam Gutierrez

Now, in case you’re inclined to say no to fruit but never say no to chocolate, there’s a whole table filled with milk, dark, coffee, hazelnut, and other chocolate options. Also of note is the house-made Nutella, which puts the jarred stuff to shame. And in case you have a “more is more” mentality when it comes to the confection, there’s a chocolate fountain so you can coat anything your heart desires. 

At long last, you have a plate or two heaping with fresh, delicious treats. What's next? Find yourself a seat on the terrace, which looks out onto staggering Lake Como, order a coffee (a cappuccino, espresso, whatever you like, this is Italy after all), take in all the fairytale sights and sounds, dig into your first bite, and start thinking about what you’re going to get for your third serving.

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