Who are we?

We are Michiel Smits and Ingrid Kemp and live since December 2017 in Italy, in the picturesque village of Massino Visconti, near Lake Maggiore. Massino Visconti is located in the Piedmont region, the gastronomic centre of Italy! We live here together with Enzo, our Bernese mountain dog. In the Netherlands we lived for many years at Maarssen-Dorp, situated in the center of Holland.

For many years Michiel worked as a sound control- and air pollution specialist at an environmental protection agency in the center of the Netherlands. Ingrid addition to being a candidate civil-law notary, but she also worked as a lawyer in family law for many years. But “something in gastronomy” and “running a small hotel” was also her wish and now she is the hostess of Villa Magnolia!

Enzo is our 2nd Bernese Mountain Dog. Enzo is now 6 years old. He is social, wants to cuddle all day, and is (sometimes) stubborn… in short, a real Bernese! Enzo likes to meet other dog friends. Dogs are therefore very welcome in Villa Magnolia.

Why Massino Visconti?

We both love Italy very much. That we would ever live there was pretty certain. After years of searching we happened to come across a house:

  • with stunning view of Lake Maggiore;
  • located in a beautiful area;
  • good and easily accessible by car;
  • close to an airport (Milan Malpensa);
  • close to a lovely village;
  • with an enclosed garden,

in short… our dream house was found!

Massino Visconti is located on the south-west side of Lake Maggiore. This is the quieter side of the lake. You can look up the busier areas by driving to Stresa, Locarno and so on.

Our village is the birthplace of the Visconti family: an Italian noble family that ruled Milan from 1277 to 1447. In Massino Visconti this family was the “vice comes”, as the vassal of the archbishop of the region. The family castle is still an eye-catcher in the village. In the village there is an ATM, an excellent bakery, a small supermarket, a pharmacy, a takeaway pizzeria, a coffee bar and a great ice cream parlor. You walk from our villa to the village within 10 minutes. The bus stop is in front of the gate. The services are offered by Comazzi and Pirazzi.