Via Primatesta 7, 28028 Pettenasco/Crabbia - Lake Orta

History & Family Story

We are the Family Manini – Martinazzi, the owners of the Villa L’Antica Colonia. The impressive building was built around the end of the 18th century. There are no records about the history of the house at that time, but memorials handed down from generation to generation tells that a Don Riccardo, a clergyman, was leaving there around the end of the 19th century. The large ground around the building, that in the beginning extended until the lake, was planted with vineyards and fruit trees and cultivated by the women of the village that were working for the clergyman. When he died, Don Riccardo bequeathed the property to the Cottolengo of Turin, an institute still existing nowadays for people with physical and psychical diseases.

Around the beginning of the 20th century the Cottolengo sold the property to the company De Angeli Frua, that owned some manufacturing industries located in the area of Milan and on the Orta Lake. During the summer season the Family De Angeli Frua changed the property into a summer residence for the children of its employees, using part of the house for the breeding of the silk-worm in the winter season. The vineyards and the big fruit trees were replaced from great mulberry trees to feed the silk-worms. The yarn was then used in the Family’s industries. One of these centenarian trees is still existing nowadays in the property.

In 1954 the company De Angeli Frua stopped its activity on the Orta Lake and the whole house with the ground was on sale. Giuseppe Manini and Maria Clementina Maulini bought it in that year. For long time the house was meant for a private use. In 1995 the daughter Elda, together with her husband Guido and the daughters Monica and Valentina, started to renovate the property turning it into holiday destination.

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