About us

Underlying the Stronghold restoration project, beyond the numbers, beyond the construction site, and before any schedule, there is the dream of a family. The family of Luca Veronelli and Elsa Panini, who have always had a common dream: to live and work in touch with nature, in a context with the flavour of lived spaces that gives a different taste to everything, away from the small spaces of an office and from the lifeless colours of the city. They had this dream for themselves but even more for their two children, who have a great privilege: they will be the first to go back running and playing in those spaces where, for more than 700 years, there has been no sound but the echo of wildlife growing.

Luca is a former company director, a carrier to which he devoted the last 20 years of his life, and that gave him the proper cast of mind to become the Resident Manager at the Stronghold.

Elsa is a biologist by education and a cook by passion; her cooking school has the mission to spread the idea of a healthy eating beyond the walls of the Stronghold, thanks to the open-to-all classes, that will liven up the schedule throughout the year.

The idea and the project

2016 is the year of the change. During that summer Elsa Panini and Luca Veronelli read on a paper the long overdue news they have been waiting for. After years of researches for a structure with a story to tell and that was waiting to be brought back to life, a place where to cook and to host events, where to rest and to live emotions, there it was: the Arignano Stronghold , presenting itself to their eyes in all its moving beauty.

It was love at first sight, when they immediately realized the enormous potential of the building, left in neglect for more than 700 years. The castle was in a truly ugly state of deterioration, and despite the many visits of potential buyers it wasn’t able to find anybody who would take care of it again. Luca’s and Elsa’s eyes were not misled by the patina of age, so that they decided to overshadow their jobs to devote themselves entirely to the Stronghold and its gardens.

A project requiring time, attention and care, because the awakening after a 700-year sleep needs to be smooth and gentle.