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02/05/2013

Eliante and Legambiente together for the management of Monte Barro's Hermitage

Eliante and Legambiente Lecco have won the call for bids issued by Monte Barro Regional Park concerning the management of the accommodation facilities, the organisation of environmental education activities and the tourism promotion of the Park’s Hermitage. Thanks to the support of WWF Lombardy, Eliante and Legambiente Lecco will manage the Hermitage’s activities until 2016.

Monte Barro’s Hermitage is a building surrounded by a monumental beech forest at about 800 meters above sea level, located in the middle of 44 kilometers of trails running through the park. From the Hermitage it is possible to enjoy an exceptional panorama, with a tremendous view on three lakes (Como, Annone and Garlate ones). In particular clear days it is even possible to get a glimpse of Milan’s Duomo.

MONTE BARRO’S HERMITAGE: THE STORY SO FAR

The area surrounding the Hermitage has a centuries-old history, including the remains of one of the most important Gothic settlement in the world (V - VI century a.d.). The Hermitage itself is no exception; originally a Franciscan monastery (hence the name "hermitage"), in 1889 it was changed into the Grand Hotel Monte Barro, which was run until 1927. Then, in 1968 the Hemitage was turned into a sanatorium and lost its historical form because of heavy works on its structure. 

Seen from the valley, it is easy to see the Hermitage as a large building striding with the surrounding environment, having been built at a time when nobody cared about nature preservation. However, the Park has been trying to make the Hermitage as less impactful as possible since the early 90’s: three floors of the original building have been knocked down and the first herbal-purification plant in the province of Lecco has been set up. 

THE HERMITAGE TODAY

Today the Park is continuing this path towards sustainability, with the ambitious goal to make the Hermitage a center for dissemination of environmental issues, as well as a hostel able to accommodate up to 50 people. 

Eliante and Legambiente Lecco have decided to take up the challenge and to manage together this space. While Legambiente is going to take care of the accommodation facilities, Eliante is focusing on environmental education activities tailored for both adults and children, as well as the organization of events. The goal is to attract students, teachers, businesses and tourists from all over Lombardy and beyond thanks to a range of high-quality and environmentally-friendly educational and recreational activities.

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