The skilful recovery of a house in the center of a thousand-year-old village in the lesser-known Dolomites speaks of a passion for the truest mountains. And you can stay there

Let's start from the beginning, like in fairy tales. This is the story of a wise and respectful recovery, carried out with tenacity, dedication and passion - authentic - for the mountain. The genuine one, made up of few words and simple, thoughtful and sincere gestures, the wild one, surrounded by the dense stillness of nature, the unexplored one, unknown to most.

The story takes place in a millenary village, Ronch, on plateau of Laste, 1500 m high. A special place - ancestral - which enjoys a privileged position: in front the majesty of Monte Civetta stands out, “the most beautiful rock wall in the Alps” wrote Dino Buzzati. In the center, a seventeenth-century farmhouse. To be kept.

Where is the village of Ronch

The village of Ronch, in the municipality of Rocca Pietore, in Veneto, is located in the alto Cordevole, in one of the five Ladin valleys of the Dolomites, together with the Conca Ampezzana, the South Tyrolean valleys Gardena and Badia and the Trentino Val di Fassa. It is configured as a typical Ladin villas made up of a dozen farm buildings and barns. It is located 200 meters from the famous Sass de Rocia and Sass de la Murada cliffs, which offer climbing routes of all levels and are considered among the best climbing walls in the Alps.

From Ronch there are also numerous itineraries for walking, or pedaling on a mountain bike, on the Laste plateau and towards Mount Migogn , along the Alta Via Delle Creste, from where it is possible to embrace in one fell swoop ' look at all the most beautiful peaks of the Dolomites: Marmolada, Pale di San Martino, Civetta, Pelmo, Antelao, Tofane and the Sella Group. In winter, Ronch is the starting point for snowshoeing and touring skis.

Millennial history and strategic position

The history of the village is very ancient and is linked to its very favorable position: being placed on a slope facing South, towards the only access to the Upper Valley from the plain Venetian, they made it, since the first centuries after Christ, a strategic point for the first fortifications barbarian on the Sass de La Murada which constituted the most advanced garrison to control the mines of ferro del Fursil, then disputed throughout the Middle Ages between the bishop-prince of Bressanone and the Serenissima.

At the service of the garrison of the fortress, at the foot of Sass de la Murada, the village of Ronch has developed into the characteristic layout of villas Ladin, where farms gathered to help each other in dealing with the daily difficulties of a high mountain environment, especially in the winter season.

The recovery of the house in the center of the village

The seventeenth-century building in the center of the village of Ronch was purchased in the spring of 2018 by the engineer Stefano Mosconi, together with his wife Francesca, who personally followed - with fervid rare passion and dedication - the recovery jobs. From Bergamo who worked and lived in Libya, Austria, Switzerland and Romania, Mosconi was director of projects such as the Genoa Bridge and of the lots of the three main Alpine tunnels being excavated: the Brenner Base Tunnel, the Moncenisio Tunnel and the Gotthard Tunnel.

Historical supervision

The dating that traces the structure of the farm back to the seventeenth century has been confirmed by the architect Marino Baldin, a reference figure for the restoration of historic buildings in the Dolomites, who during the renovation took care not only of the recovery of the original plasters, but also of supervision of the entire work.

Storm Vaia didn't stop the renovation project

The recovery and renovation works also affected the structures of the building which at end of October 2018 was severely damaged by storm Vaia, a catastrophic event that severely hit the villages and the entire territory of the Dolomites, especially the Alto Agordino.

Arriving in Ronch on the night of October 31st, finding the house uncovered and flooded by rain was a moment that I will never forget”, explains Stefano Mosconi, but from the next morning, despite the first snow of the year, I was only willing to commit to repair in time for the winter and redesign an intervention that was broader and more structured, which would deliver the house to a long future.

In addition to the refurbishment of the roof, a structural reinforcement was also carried out in correspondence with the second floor, inserting two reinforcing chains and bandages in steel mesh and structural limes placed under the plaster.

Interventions in the name of recovery

For the design interventions Stefano Mosconi opted for technical solutions that would allow the maximum recovery of existing materials and structures, albeit in compliance with current technical construction standards. Such as the conservation of the primary frame of the roof, which was more than twice as light as the standard requirements. The adaptation was therefore achieved through the design of a support frame made of beams and pillars to recover the secondary framework of the original larch roof, in addition to the insertion of a reticular steel beam in the eastern pitch portion under which the ancient wooden dressing rooms did not allow the laying of wooden beams and props.

The hospitality that of yesteryear but with all contemporary comforts

The restored building now houses of Mosconi family, which will be completed with the recovery of the stables and the rear barn, but also has a cozy apartment that from last summer is intended for tourist rental.

You can stay in Cesa del Panigas

Cesa del Panigas is equipped with all the facilities and contemporary comforts, including super fast wi-fi connection for smartworkers, but each original element of the ancient house was recovered: from the stube to the economic kitchen, from the fir boards of the floor to the larch beams of the attics up to the comfortable, now used as a cloakroom and storage for trekking equipment. Even for the plaster, the original one still existing on some portions of the facade was analyzed to replicate the mixture in the missing parts.

The configuration of the apartment

The apartment intended for hospitality, spread over 120 m2 distributed over two levels, on the ground floor is equipped with a large living area with entrance, dressing room in the ancient comfortable, kitchen and traditional stube. A staircase leads to the sleeping area located on the upper floor, where there are two bedrooms and a study with sofa bed.

Preserving a way of life

This is the story of a recovery project born with the will to preserve, a architecture but above all a way of living and sharing. This is the story of a certain type of care, meticulous and respectful of the history of the farm and the territory in which it is grafted. This is the story of a maintenance, of raw materials and feelings. This is a story, written by an (passionate) engineer who builds tunnels and bridges by trade, that now inhabits and pervades every corner of the new rooms of the farm, simple, material and warm.

A special willingness to share

And it is the story of a special availability special, that of one who, interpreting the meaning deeply community of a mountain village, he lavishes his advice - secret and precious - to let people know, travel and live ( really) to its guests those uncontaminated and marginalized places: dense and silent woods bordered by majestic peaks. And it is not uncommon for the house to be visited by deer, roe deer, mouflons, foxes and badgers, as well as the two eagles that live on Mount Migogn and which in summer can be seen circling around almost every day. Just like in a fairytale. This is a story of the mountains, of a mountain that remains a mountain.