The Nino Franco Spumanti company was founded in 1919. Currently run by Primo Franco and his daughter Silvia, Nino Franco’s sparkling wine is synonymous with class and quality, known in the world of “bubbles” for its award-winning Prosecco 100% Glera. Close to the center of Valdobbiadene, the brand’s high-tech winery was restored by Tobia Scarpa and then expanded on Paolo Bornello’s design.
Overlooking the wine-making environments of the ground floor, the tasting room, accessible through the scenic warehouse, where thousands of bottles lie in steel trolleys creating a huge art installation, is distinguished by elegant chromatic nuances that go from aubergine to green to bronze. On the wall, an autographed photo by Ferdinando Scianna donated to Primo Franco symbolizes the passion of Franco’s family for the Arts, a sensitivity to the Beauty and the Good that finds its emblematic synthesis in the magnificent Wine Relais Villa Barberina, just 1 km from the winery.
The house-museum dates back to the second half of the 18th century when it was built on behalf of the Sarri-Dall’Armi family. In the ‘900, it was acquired by the Piva family, owner of a renowned silk factory in the center of Valdobbiadene, as a wedding gift to Barberina Piva (who gave the name to the Villa). In 2003 it was bought by the Franco family who in 2006 initiated an important renovation. The conservative restoration has brought back to their splendor the original frescoes, curtains and furniture, keeping intact the rare collection of objects, books (rare first editions are conserved in the library) and works of art that belonged to the families that lived there throughout the years.
The magnificent secular park of the villa blends with the ancient vineyard – the only Clos, i.e. walled vineyard, in Valdobbiadene – that gives life to the wine Brut Grave di Stecca. At the back of the villa, a two-level split panoramic swimming pool opens onto the magnificent panorama of the hills and the Prealpi Venete.
Today, Annalisa Franco, Primo’s wife, is the Relais’ elegant hostess who welcomes her guests – the villa has 5 lovely rooms – with refined yet exquisitely warm hospitality.
Tasting a glass of Grave di Stecca wine sitting in the picturesque garden of the Villa is perhaps the most charming way to enjoy the timeless atmosphere (Agatha Christie‘s style!) of this privileged corner of the Venetian countryside.
Villa Barberina tells us about 300 years of Venetian history also thanks to the central role that the residence has played for Valdobbiadene over the years. A reference point for the community, in its garden you can still see an ancient fountain which, according to the inscription engraved on the side, was “for public convenience” for the citizens.