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Established in 2004

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We tried several hotels in Torri del Benaco which suited our budget but after seeing Hotel Gardesana everything else was a disappointment and so we had to go for the best there is!  Our guests will not be disappointed with this hotel which has been in existance for hundreds of years.  The building dates from 1452 and many illustrious guests have stayed there such as Winston Churchill, Max Ernst, Vivien Leigh, Lawrence Olivier, Maria Callas, King of Spain Juan  Carlos I, Jacques Piccard, Kim Novak etc. and now "Painting in Italy".  

Torri del Benaco is on the east coast of the Lake, north of "Garda".  It  has nothing of the tourist atmosphere, noise and hype that surrounds Garda.  Torri del Benaco is a quiet small town situated directly on the lakeside with a small traffic free town centre full of interesting shops, lots of bars, ice cream parlours and for those that want to swim in the lake, some beaches . There are plenty of painting opportunities in this beautiful town such as the medieval port, the turreted fourteenth century castle, the narrow streets with archways, pretty houses with flowers flowing from balconies and of course the lake itself.  We chose this location because it is only one hour from Verona airport and the city of Verona.  This makes it an ideal location to include an opera in the the programme at the famous Verona Arena - the biggest openair arena in Italy (June/July dates only).  

The hotel has 34 rooms furnished in nineteenth century Venetian style with private bath-shower, Satelite TV, Wifi and air conditioning.  Some rooms have a lake view and some rooms have a lake view as well as small balcony.  There is a wide marble arcade with bar service on the ground floor to watch the world go by and a lounge bar on the balcony overlooking the harbour where breakfast and dinner are served.  

The staff are charming and extremely helpful.  This is a perfect location for a painting holiday and will suit non-painting partners as there is so much to explore and places to relax around the hotel.


Sunday 14th June 2020 - Charles Mitchell

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"What a beautiful location! Very inspiring and almost spoilt for choice for subjects to paint. I should have opted for a room on the front but I’m being picky. Charles is a lovely man and his time was spent evenly between all the participants. I am rusty on my watercolour painting techniques and would have loved to monopolise his time.....selfish! think? Having been 4 times in 2 years on your holidays, this will not be the last I can assure you. Well done yet again an you can expect for me to pester you again. My expectations are justifiablely high. Oh where to next... any suggestions?" - Frank - Torri del Benaco June 2018



Wonderful week rounded off by a wonderful trip to Verona and the opera. The hotel in Verona was a really excellent choice - very central and accessible, bar very accommodating when we were late back from the opera and still feeling very elated. We loved Torri and the hotel was beautifully situated - lots of interest for the painter. Charles was always very helpful on the painting part of the holiday - as I was there with non painting husband i probably didn't get the best out of it in terms of timing ( I should have spent more time painting!!). My only slightly adverse comment is that there was always too much food, it was mostly very good but quite rich and on several occasions we opted for a mixed salad for the main course and fresh fruit for dessert.this was easily available when we asked but it would have been better if there had been some lighter /plain er food and offered as a choice, rather than special request........... but, then, we were in Italy!!” – Torri del Benaco – June 2018


"Torri del Benaco was an excellent location. Loved being ther and found it very beautiful. Charles, our tutor, was so warm and helpful. He gave a lot of individual attention. The hotel was very accommodating and provided lovely dining experiences. Missing Torri". -  Sandy - Lake Garda June 2017


"Wonderful holiday ! A splendid location for painting and Charles gave excellent instruction. Good food, plenty of wine and lovely fellow artists made this holiday quite special". - Lake Garda June 2017

Charles was an excellent instructor. He not only helped me enormously with my understanding of how to use watercolor, but also provided insightful comments on how to develop the composition and approach the piece from a more abstract perspective - just what I was looking for. The town was charming and the group was a lovely bunch of folks which made it a very pleasurable week for a solo traveler". August 2016

"Thank you so much for the lovely painting holiday with Charles at Lake Garda. I truly enjoyed myself from the first to the last minutes, since everything was perfectly organized and Charles proved to be a sensitive Tutor! So I´ll be surely Painting In Italy again. The other participants have also been very kind and patient with me, so I was able to improve my listening comprehension etc. " - Ulrike July 2016

“We had a lovely holiday with smooth transfers at either end to and from the Airport. The hotel was friendly, clean and my room absolutely lovely. Breakfast was amazing in the Hotel.. Torri was perfect as it was small, quiet, full of lovely shops and not too touristy. It was a wonderful week Sheila and brilliantly organised and Charles was a very good tutor who was very encouraging and helpful to all our different artistic abilities. Many many thanks”. – Claire July 2016