Where to stay in Lugano?

Où Dormir à Lugano

What to do when planning a trip to Switzerland? Where to expatriate in Switzerland? Here’s where to stay in Lugano!

Switzerland’s ninth-largest city by population, Lugano borders Italy, in the middle of the Alps, just a few kilometers from Milan, between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como. Lugano’s ideal location in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland – with its ideal climate, lush vegetation and stunning scenery – makes it a major tourist destination. It is also the country’s third-largest financial center.

It boasts a rich historical and cultural heritage, with a large number of religious buildings and museums for a permanent population of just 63,932. Thanks to its sustained growth, the city is gradually swallowing up the surrounding communes, creating a vast urban area of 150,000 inhabitants.

Let’s face it: accommodation in Lugano will be expensive. Via Nassa, for example, is reputed to be the fifth most expensive shopping street in Switzerland, and is home to a number of luxury boutiques. Paradoxically, however, it’s easy to find accommodation in Lugano’s ever-expanding city center and residential areas. Here’s where to stay in Lugano.


Wrapped around the northern shores of Lake Lugano, the city center has a slightly exaggerated air of Rio de Janeiro’s Bay of Along or Sugar Loaf: its rocky outcrop overlooking the lake lends the city its typical charm. The district’s squares are simply sublime: the Piazza della Riforma is the city’s most beautiful square, not far from the courtyard of the neoclassical Palazzo Civico. If you come during the second week of July, don’t miss the Estival Jazz festival.

The rest of the year, wander through the labyrinth of alleyways, where the architecture is reminiscent of Tuscany and Liguria, while the high standard of living and the number of luxury boutiques dotting the pavement are a reminder that you’re still in Switzerland. Wandering along via Nassa, take a look at the church of San Carlo Borromeo, then continue on to the church of Santa Maria degli Angioli if you enjoy visiting religious buildings. For a relaxing break from city sightseeing, take advantage of Ciani Park and its green setting on the shores of the lake. Not far away, between the ferry terminal and Viale Carlo Cattaneo, you’ll find numerous bars where you can enjoy a drink on the terrace. If you can afford a hotel in Lugano, look no further!

Eastern districts

On the other side of the little river – Cassarate – are areas less central in terms of access to amenities and social life (museums, bars, restaurants, historical monuments), but a great place to stay if you like to get away from the city and into nature: East Lugano is built on the slopes of Monte Brè, from where you can take the funicular up to enjoy a splendid view of Lake Lugano at an altitude of 925 meters. Please note that there are not many hotels here, but you will be able to find other accommodation solutions, such as renting a room or apartment from a local to stay in Lugano and enjoy the lake.

Main photo credit: Pixabay – Adege