Montagnola is a small Swiss village in Collina d'Oro municipality. Located in the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino, it is close to the border between Switzerland and Italy. It looks over Lake Lugano and the city of Lugano upon it. It falls within the local parish of Sant'Abbondio Gentilino.
Montagnola is first mentioned in 1226.
The merger of several formerly separate properties of the monastery of S. Abbondio in Como in 1535, led to the establishment of the Concilium Sancti Abundii which covered not only Gentilino but the village of Montagnola with the hamlets of Vigilio, Orino, Arasio, Certenago, Poprino, Barca and Scairolo. An inventory of the monastery mentioned the presence of a fortress at Arasio.
The local economy was based on agriculture as well as emigration of architects and builders from the Gilardi, Lucchini, Berra and Camuzzi families into various European countries, especially Russia. Several of these builders were able to create major works in these foreign cities and rise to great fame. The pleasant climate and attractive location of the village attracted many illustrious personalities from abroad including the writer Hermann Hesse. A museum to the writer opened in 1997. Between 1923-27 it was the seat of the prestigious Officina Bodoni, the printing shop of Hans (later Giovanni) Mardersteig. Since 1956, the city is home to an international school, The American School In Switzerland, which, in 2006, had about 450 students of various nationalities. Because of its proximity to Lugano, Montagnola is now a kind residential suburb of the city.
The former municipality stretched over the central portion of the Collina d'Oro valley from the Bay of Agno to Pian Scairolo, and included a number of villages.
The historical population is given in the following chart:
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