The Giacomoni Family
A 40 year history!
Orso Bruno opened for skiing on December 24, 1974!
Mauro was a young surveyor in the early 1970s working for his father Livio Giacomoni's construction company in Malè.
After several years of marriage, Mauro and Piera had three beautiful daughters: Sonja, Katja, and Nadja.
Mauro had been a mountaineer since boyhood and loved nature and mountains. One day, he decided to finally realize his crazy dream of building a lodge at the top of Mount Vigo (an altitude of 2200 meters) that could only be reached by foot.
Once Mauro made this decision, he was unstoppable. He moved forward with construction despite weather conditions; no matter strong winds, snow storms, or rain. He took advantage of any days off to hike up to Mount Vigo, roll-up his sleeves and continue building.
At the time, there was no electricity at the top of Mount Vigo, so Mauro and his workers used candles and gas lamps after dark. Later, a generator was taken to the construction site that provided light for a few hours a day. Rainwater was used to boil water for pasta and to mix cement needed to lay mortar.
Year after year, brick after brick along with sacrifice and hard work, the heart of the lodge (now the restaurant area) took shape. Sleeping quarters were built below so workers could stay the night and avoid the daily walk from the bottom of the valley to the top of the mountain.
It took more than three years before the lodge could open to skiers.
At that time, the exterior of the lodge remained unfinished with no wood or plaster. Wind and snow crept through the doors of the building.
Also, there were only two ski lifts that could take skiers to Orso Bruno: one from Malga Palciana and the other from Folgarida. Both lifts were extremely steep and felt endless, especially on cold and windy days.
It took over 20 years for Orso Bruno to reach the size it is today. The last improvements were made in 1988 when the upper level and new sandwich bar were built.
In the last year, the two original chairlifts have been replaced by two modern express chairlifts, and a ski connection with the ski area of Madonna di Campoglio has been added. Additionally, visitors can now reach Orso Bruno from the bottom of Val di Sole in less than 14 minutes thanks to Daolasa express gondola built in 2007.
Busy managing the demanding responsibilities of Orso Bruno, Mauro fell ill, and in the late 1990s was diagnosed with Alzheimers. Under the sweet care of Piera, he coped with this disabling disease for more than 14 years.
Mauro passed on December 18, 2012 once again free to roam his beloved mountain.
Orso Bruno is now run by daughters Sonja and Katja with the help of their mother, Piera.
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