ACC Naturale Architettura + PlaC - Hotel Cascina Galarej, a former historic farmstead in the heart of the Langhe Region
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Hotel Cascina Galarej, a former historic farmstead in the heart of the Langhe Region

ACC Naturale Architettura + PlaC

Hospitality  /  Completed
ACC Naturale Architettura + PlaC

In the heart of the Langhe, a Unesco World Heritage Site, on the estate of the Fontanafredda wineries, are the delicate interventions that unite and connect the new, charming, sustainable, diffuse hotel "Le Case dei Conti Mirafiore." The development projects, respecting the environment carried out by the company, with the cultural activities of the E. di Mirafiore Foundation, aim with this project to expand the tourist-accommodation offer by enhancing the testimonies of a prestigious past linked to the history of the places and the beauty offered by nature. The project takes into account the uniqueness of the landscape in which the complex is set and aims to enhance a new phase of development, with a view to increasing respect for both nature and the health and well being of users.

The system of restoration, recovery and landscape interventions is implemented in order not to distort and enhance the history of the estate, marking green and strategic points and creating a path linked to the sustainable hotel diffuse. The first interventions were the Foundation and the tasting room, then the 4-star Hotel Vigna Magica, and the recovery of the Cascina Galarey.
The relationship with the surrounding nature, the key to the project, extends into the exterior design with the new greenhouse and an area of green pergolas. The care of the outdoor spaces plays on the balance between the agricultural landscape and private spaces with the aim of building the image of a real vineyard-garden that places native species alongside the vines to maintain the biodiversity of the place.

The design takes into account aspects related to sustainability, both in plant choices and in the selection of materials and products and their production chains. All the settings, are the result of choices aimed at standard or custom products and certified materials, in order to emphasize the eco-sustainable and environmentally friendly vocation of the developed project. The concept is declined in the search for solutions that have the lowest impact on the environment and aimed at energy saving, a philosophy that does not exclude the presence of innovation and technology. This includes the restoration of the existing buildings and the use of traditional local materials such as wood, stone, and brick, alongside the insertion of large steel windows , which enhance the existing structures.

The project consists of the recovery for receptive use of the Cascina Gallarej building , with 10 rooms and a spa, disused by agricultural activities and positioned in a dominant situation on the ridge of a hill enjoys a unique view of Grinzane Cavour Castle. The 10 rooms are located in the main building, while the former barn, with its typical exposed brick structure, houses the indoor pool and spa. The two existing structures are connected by a new connecting building, the "greenhouse," which is entirely dry-built with a glulam structure in which the communal spaces dedicated to guests are located. As for the interiors, the spaces are adapted to the hotel function, trying to intervene as little as possible on the existing structure and emphasizing the recovered rooms, with vaults, wooden roofs and the large arched openings of the facades. The new functional additions, such as new glazed parapets and large window frames, the metal mezzanines, constitute discontinuities from the rigorous restoration of the facade characters. Elements, made of lightweight materials, metal, wood, and glass, are intended to clearly differentiate themselves from the existing structure, expressly avoiding attempts at camouflage and allowing the building to be enjoyed in its original characters. The schematic and almost archetypal simplicity of the proposed elements , materials and colors, insert new typologies respectful of the rural context in which one finds oneself.

The Village was born thanks to Emanuele Alberto, with the goal of creating a community of people. Now transformed into "VILLAGE NARRANT in Fontanafredda & Casa E. di Mirafiore" it is surrounded by the beauty of the hills and in 120 hectares of bionatural reserve, in the heart of Barolo. The latest development, Hotel Cascina Gallarej, is a historic farmstead on the estate used as a shelter and now transformed into a charming hotel where historicity, contemporaneity and nature come together.


 Serralunga d'Alba - Cuneo
 Casa di E. Mirafiore & Fontanafredda s.r.l
 2200 mq
  7,100,000.00 €
 ACC Naturale Architettura Cristiana Catino + PlaC architecture urban design
 arch. Cristiana Catino, arch. Andrea Alessio, arch. Gian Luca Meli, arch. Marco Gherardi
 Marenco Costruzioni
 Studio Ferrero, pratiche amministrative. Studio Agnelli, impianti elettrici e speciali. Termica Progetti, impianti meccainic e idraulici. Ing. Massobrio, progettazione strutturale.
 Green Pea, Artemide, Vimar, Salis, Florim, Iris Ceramica, Mapei, Ceramica Cielo, Gessi, Garofoli, Sidel, Riva 1920, Roda, Gervasoni, Vibieffe, Driade, Frea&Frea, Ki Life, Orveca contract, Floricoltura Monviso
 Barbara Corsico


Cristiana Catino began her career with Andrea Bruno and Renzo Piano and was founder/partner of Negozio Blu. Since 1995 she has specialised in bio-architecture and in 2016 created ACC Naturale Architettura. Her most significant projects include Green Pea, the first green retail center (Turin 2020), the Hotel Fontanafredda (Alba 2017-), the socio-cultural centre Workout Pasubio, Parma (2016 competition), restoration, interior and retail design projects and urban/landscape redevelopment.
PlaC is an architecture/urbanism firm that develops regeneration projects on different scales; its work is the result of collaborative processes, with a critical approach about city-territory, construction and design. PlaC focuses on emphasizing existing qualities to evolve in something unexpected; strengthening of identities, adaptability of program and flexibility are the main tools. PlaC has developed projects in Italy and abroad and got awarded in different international competitions.


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