Italian news agency ANSA reported that newlywed Andrea Benedetto began to drown on Sunday afternoon after his inflatable swan was carried away by the wind.
According to a witness, the swimmer’s friends alerted a life guard – but Magnini reached him first.
The 37-year-old was swimming nearby with his girlfriend, Italian model and TV personality Giorgia Palmas, when he saw the tourist was in trouble.
A former world champion swimmer who won bronze at the 2004 Athens Olympics, Magnini had no problem getting to the man in a few quick strokes.
“At a certain point, he got scared, couldn’t move and swallowed a bit of water,” Magnini told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
“When I reached him, he couldn’t even speak.”
Magnini kept the man afloat until the lifeguard arrived.
Benedetto, 45, had married his partner two days earlier at a ceremony in Cagliari.