Italian Hospitality at Sarzano Castle
Innovative hospitality project
Borgo BiancoMatilde is an innovative hospitality project that draws on the history of the surrounding area to project the medieval complex of Sarzano Castle into the future. The architects of this new direction are Luca Di Pietro and his partner Lorenzo Baricca, who have developed a diverse format of initiatives to meet the Municipality of Casina’s needs to keep alive the multiple cultural, historical, tourism, food, wine, and environmental values of such an evocative historical complex. "Creating a story that is linked to the excellence of the location" is the aim behind this multi-building accommodation site, with the village as its focal point, from which it looks toward international tourism.
The two partners' program revolves around three steps: a wine bar and restaurant that are already open, followed by a hotel with a small number of rooms, and a spa. The former church of San Bartolomeo is already the ideal setting for exhibitions, events, company meetings and also wine and food tastings, with various producers and chefs selected by Di Pietro and Baricca. Italian Dream – a company specially created by the two managers – intends to keep the charm of the past intact while taking advantage of today's particularities. For this reason, it has also planned partnerships with local associations and companies, food and wine tours, professional cooking courses, and integrations with Slow Food convivia linked to the Parco Nazionale dell'Appennino Tosco-Emiliano
The pursuit of excellence is not only centered on places or fresh produce but has also extended to professional experts. As such, the Italian Dream team put together by the two partners includes, among its key members, General Manager and Sommelier Fernando Burani (Brazilian by birth and Italian by adoption) and professional chef Maichol Stefani. In this branch of the Apennines, History is spelled with a capital H, because Matilde of Canossa – a key figure in the penance inflicted on Emperor Henry IV by Pope Gregory VII – included the fortress as part of the military system in the lands over which she ruled. And once again here, none other than the great poet Dante Alighieri drew inspiration from the Pietra di Bismantova for his description of the Mountain of Purgatory, in the Divine Comedy. Today, this ecological and cultural mosaic is part of the network of UNESCO Biosphere Reserves, more specifically the MaB plan (Man and the Biosphere Program) proof of how respectful the relationship between man and the environment is here.