Nature, art and innovation: the key to the success of tourism in Lombardy

The presence of plains, lakes, rivers and mountains gives Lombardy a varied landscape and unique biodiversity that is hard to find in other Italian regions.

The region not only boasts abundant natural beauty, but also internationally recognized artistic and cultural heritage, embodied by its nine UNESCO sites. It is a marriage between nature and art which offers visitors a wide range of very interesting tourist destinations. The region’s appeal is evidenced by the record numbers recorded by Polis Lombardia’s “Regional tourism and attractiveness observatory”. In 2017, almost 40 million tourists, over half of which came from abroad, visited Lombardy: a 5.9% increase compared to 2016.

In the wake of the continuous development of this sector, at MIPIM 2019 Regione Lombardia is presenting three real estate investment projects of considerable artistic value located in areas of great natural beauty.

Sustainable redevelopment and restoration of historic buildings which, preserving their original character, become hotels and tourist facilities. The stars of these opportunities are the village of Malpaga in Cavernago, the Grand Hotel in San Pellegrino Terme and the former Cantoni di Bellano cotton mill.

Malpaga village, located in the municipality of  Cavernago, in the Parco Regionale del Serio near the city of Bergamo, is a medieval gem of rare beauty nestled in green surroundings. “Per Malpaga project and rebirth” is a highly sustainable project to redevelop and regenerate the whole village, whose centre of gravity is the castle, once the residence of condottiero Bartolomeo Colleoni. The conservative restoration of the existing apartment blocks will allow the entire village to become a tourist destination designed for different uses ranging from leisure to historical, housing, hotel and tertiary. The project will allow residents and tourists to experience a new way of living and vacationing that blends tradition and innovation.

The second sustainable restoration project is located fifty kilometres north of Malpaga. San Pellegrino Terme, in the province of Bergamo, is the jewel of the Val Brembana. Internationally renowned for the purity of its mineral water, the town preserves  elegant private houses, public spaces and extraordinary architectural evidence of Belle Époque such as the Municipal Casino, Baths and above all the Grand Hotel: built in 1905, it is one of the most famous symbols of Italian Art Nouveau. The project to redevelop the 18,470 sq m hotel structure, which aims to restore all its decorative and architectural elements, involves the construction of a spa and 110 rooms. The redevelopment of the Grand Hotel is part of the broader, general project of tourism to develop tourism and increase employment in this area at the foot of the Alps.

The last investment opportunity is in Bellano, a charming town located on the eastern shore of Lake Como. The main attraction of this small urban centre is the Orrido, a spectacular canyon located in the heart of the town. The Bellano Municipality’s Urban Regeneration Project involves, among other operations, the redevelopment of the former Cantoni cotton mill. This 17,500 sq m building will meet the increasingly high demand for high-end accommodation for the tourists that annually visit this part of the lake. The project will involve the building’s transformation into a hotel/accommodation facility, spa centre, museum and training centre.

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